This post is part of Linda G.Hill’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday meme -an unedited stream of consciousness piece that ties into the weekly prompt: “vis.” Use a word, or tie your post’s theme around a word, that contains the letters VIS, in that order.
Today is a rather emotional day for me, for reasons that will appear in my next post…so I’m just going to jump into this, somewhat clumsily…
Last week, I shared the opening paragraphs of Scene Thirteen of Foul Deeds Will Rise, draft #1. This week, I give you the closing paragraphs of Scene Twenty-One. No specific details on what’s going on, here, because Spoilers, but I think this sums up the connection between these sisters nicely…
“Only for a Thirtygrain”
“Leave me for a thirtygrain, Aliaan,” she said.
“Leave you, Kaivaara?” The eldest turned to regard her closely, obvious though she mayhap thought it subtle. “When you are ill?”
“Only for a thirtygrain – less if I ring. I wish to make a note to be carried to Shentaa, and it’s forbidden for Untribed to see our writing.” She settled back into the chair, lifted the tea, and sipped. Not too much, at once, until she’d done what was needed; after that, she would trust in the woman who had given over so much of her living to her care.
“Are you certain sure, my Kai?” A lacing of fear, in her scent, and her gaze darted first to the tea, and then to the cupboard where the washbasin rested. It was just slightly ajar, and her focus traveled to the upper portion of the crack. Vaara stared into her drinking bowl, so that it would look like she noticed nothing. She chanced a single small swallow, and, at once, she felt something – shift – within her, some variable she didn’t yet understand.
“I will be well enough, eldest. And I am the Kai. Go, now, and let me tend to this, and then you will see me washed and ready for the rest of the hearing. A thirtygrain, mind, and no less unless I ring for you.” She attempted to keep her voice docile, so that the other wouldn’t suspect that she was able to consider.
Aliaan looked from her to the cupboard, and then back, thrice, swiftly. Certain sure, whatever it be that she wanted not Vaara to see was there, and it had bearing on her being alone, or mayhap being as the eldest would have her.
In a fivebreath, though, she was gone, and Vaara waited another tenbreath to be certain sure of it – a fiftybreath would carry a lower statistical risk, but she dared not indulge the time…she left the chair and opened the door, and there was a bottle bearing a scent that matched a trace note in the tea. Vaara spent a threebreath in setting to mind the exact position of this bottle among the jumbled linens and soaps and the bits and pieces these Untribed seemed to find so important. She held to the looking, then closed her eyes and tried to bring forth the vision of what she had seen, before she opened them again.
She did this, again and again, until she held a perfect image. And then she went, haltingly, on legs that felt as though they hadn’t been moved in a threeday, to the table where she kept her drawing supplies, and sketched the cupboard and what was within as quickly as she was able, making certain that the bottle was visibly the focal point.
She glanced at the timing-glass. Five grains near gone; so she would hasten. She took up the bottle, which was of the type of common pure clay Healers used, and scented it again, tipping it this way and that to feel and hear the way the fluid within moved within its confines – and she had again a vision of that chamber where she had grown, trapped and forgotten, save for Shentaa and Herself. Or this one – was the eldest trapping her just as surely, here, in the Kai’s Chambers?
Vaara lifted the stopper, and the liquid’s aroma rose to her, edged sharply in danger-scent. She peered inside, but it was too dark. She tipped the bottle again, and a viscous, sweet-deadly syrup reached the lip. She stared at this for a moment, and then, in a moment of inspiration such as accompanied the best of Hunts, she took up her glass stylus and dipped it into the bottle. She had twenty grains to finish, and there was not time to waste.
Why is Vaara behaving so strangely?
What’s in the bottle?
Who is Aliaan, and what does she know?
Will Vaara run out of time?
I’ve got over 60,000 words drafted, now….
I’m pretty sure I’ll finish, but when?
Come back next week, when I may or may not answer some, all, or none, of these questions!
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