He met his grandmother the day after his mother did for the first time. Or second. It was hard to tell. Apparently she was two when her mother had disappeared.
His first question tumbled out of his mouth before he could even consider being tactful. “So did you abandon her or what? She never said.”
The old woman didn’t seem phased. She shared his mother’s eyes, he could see the similarity there, so striking, but unlike his mother who was quick to temper, his grandmother didn’t appear to follow that suit. At least, not right now. “I was beaten into a coma and don’t remember the first twenty years of my life still. Now, let’s look at you, smart mouth.”
He didn’t have a word to say to that, as she pulled him in to give him a good once over.
She might have been unphased, but he certainly wasn’t anymore.
When it comes down to it, a schedule is simply math.
The amount of hours in a day, the days in a week, the weeks in a month. How long does each task take? How long until the deadline? How to balance it all with the other tasks there are to do? She knows this well, because it’s a lot of fun to put all of this information into a grid. It’s so much fun to figure it out.
Then she has to do it as she has scheduled and it is suddenly less so.
She grinds her teeth. If only there was someone else who actually had to do these things, she decides. Then she could spend more time focusing on how to rearrange everything else. Because these tasks could be done in the time she allotted them. Even without the inspiration she might want going into it, without the drive, it was still possible.
Then how come it was so much fun to put even more in? To know that an entire day would be busy, but that it would be okay, because it would still be possible to accomplish it all?
When it comes down to it, she believes she has missed her calling. And another schedule is made.
Shivering, splendid, the frozen cold
has brought upon the times we’ve sold
away. The warmth begot from motion
knocking against the final devotion,
essential to the life all will eventually hold.
Saoirse didn’t care so much about clothes, except that they be serviceable enough to get her through what she needed to get through. Warm for those terrible cold winds, airy enough for the harsh sun – whatever she needed.
Catching Toiréasa in something different than what was usually considered good for travelling… Well, that was a different matter entirely. It reminded her of those days, right when the world was turning on its head, when she would catch a glimpse of the fire from the top of the craeg. Before the outfits became more and more suited for usage of the sword.
Saoirse was certain she preferred those outfits. The ones best suited for Toiréasa to wield her blade. However, there was something to be said for those skirts catching in low breezes, shoes that would have worn through if they had been worn through any length of their current journey.
There was something to be said for a dress, because it reminded Saoirse that she wanted that house up on top and the girl that had always been beyond her reach.
The house might still be, but the girl was right here.
“Can I come too?”
He had wanted to ask the first time, or the second, but Tumelo always appeared to have something for him to do and his mother, while usually patient, sometimes would not wait for anyone.
She squatted down in front of him, glancing about conspiratorially. “Let’s see if we can get out of here before anyone notices.” She took his hand and they quickly made their way out. He loved it when they did things like this. When they would leave the castle and head out into town. This time though, this time it was to one specific place. These were the children that had come without parents.
He couldn’t imagine.
“Ready, my flower?” She stroked his hair back in the braids they were contained in.
He nodded and they entered the orphanage.
“You’re a hunter now?”
Her sister sounded so surprised. Leondra shifted the phone in her hand. “I’ve told you all about it for months. Why are you surprised now?”
“Well… I don’t know. It’s not that I didn’t think you were serious. I knew you’d keep up with it. I… guess I didn’t realize that it would be what you did. Understand?”
“No.” Because as far as Leondra could glisten, her sister hadn’t believed it of her. What had she said that wouldn’t have made her understand this sooner? “What’s so hard to understand about what I said? I’ve been using the gun for years. Turning into my profession for the last couple. Finally working it out these last several months. Why are you surprised?”
“Because I’m not.”
“Did you know what that was short for?”
He looked at his brother-in-law, then back down at his infant child. The new name his husband had insisted upon, the one he had agreed on. Because if finally broke through his husband’s family’s tradition of naming.
Yet his brother-in-law, in a very matter-of-fact way, spoke as though he had missed something. His mind worked quickly.
His brother-in-law grinned. “Yep. Welcome to the family, finally. There’s no escaping the naming conventions, even if you try.”
He groaned, face in one hand with his one month old son cradled in arm.
It was the potion, he had to believe.
There was no other way his beloved nephew would have done this to him otherwise. There was no way that his lovely wife would have tricked him like this. He cared about the two of them too much to believe they would have decided to do this to him deliberately.
He looked into their travels. His nephew had gone so far to bring his bride to him. He had no doubts that the two had become close during this time. However, that was to be expected. There was no way that someone couldn’t enjoy the company of his nephew.
However, to this extent, he could not accept.
They passed through the swamp, where it was known trickery was abound. Potion drinkers were there. Potion makers, even worse.
They wouldn’t have done this to him. Not on purpose. They wouldn’t have chosen to drink this, knowing.
This was what he convinced himself of, to save his feelings for both his old family and new.
Comparatively, it was like snow.
Putting a foot down in the dust, it left a footprint as clear as though stepping through a thin layer of snow. It would stay there, without moving, step after step, the absolute nothingness of the surroundings changing nothing.
Reaching down and scraping the surface of the ground did the same. Through gloves, there was no possible way of feeling it. Unlike snow, there was no way of knowing it was cold simply by touch. One would have to make the assumption and continue under that manner.
No one would take off gloves here.
Dust didn’t make for a good building block. This dust couldn’t make a figure.
This dust would remain though, long after the snow had melted in whatever part of the planet it had fallen.
The dust wasn’t snow, but the footprints were the same.
Too close to the
opening, where people grasp
under the assumption that I
can accept a
hand when the thought makes me shiver