Wednesday, August 24, 2011

542 - Silvery Grey and Bloody

“I love you too, Sukala,” Kallijas said and disappeared into another cavern.  There came odd creaking noises and then the sound of water rushing, perhaps into a stone sink. 

“Bear with us, my dear potentates!”  Sukala said and went off after him.

“Just tea for me, please,” I say.  “May I help?”

“No, no, sit down Minis,” and “Certainly, my lad, come right in here!”  Kall and Sukala said at the same time, then both laughed uproariously.

“What sort of tea?” Sukala asked.  She sounded happy even saying that.  There was an odd arrangement of wooden pipes zig-zagging down one wall of the kitchen cavern, indeed over a stone sink.  A flat soap-stone top to another stove.  The shelves were crammed full of wildly bright painted pots and more strings of onions and garlic and scallions.  Massive pots lined the edge of the wall under the shelves, probably for grains and other dry things, considering the pictures painted and glazed on them.

A massive piece of wood served as a table.  Its top was as thick as the tips of my fingers to my elbow and it was as long as Kall was tall.

“I can pour a pot or carry with the best of them!”  I couldn’t help smiling as I picked up the tray that Kall had filled up with cups and set three pots upon it.  Reknarja cleared his throat from the main cavern. The sound travelled clearly.

“I am quite happy with tea, thank you, Amaesta Sukala,” he said.

“I would like to try this chocolate cup concoction,” Klaimera said.  “It was invented by someone in the war, wasn’t it?”

“Some Yeoli, who poured hot milk into pehahka, and then they figured how to make it so that the children could drink it, or those not drinking alcohol, as I understand it,” Reknarja said.

The kaf pot, the tea pot and the chocolate pot all clinked nicely on the tray that I picked up.  The dog bumped his nose into the back of my knees and I had to laugh.  “You aren’t going to trip me up, dog, get.”  He sniffed and dropped back further behind me.

“So how did you all like the asa kraiya ceremony?” Sukala said cheerily, as if it had been a comedy play or something.

“It... was intense,” I said.  “But does the sex part at the end always happen?”

“Oh no no, it’s different for everyone,” said Sukala.  “Chevenga, or should I say Virani-e, is a special case.”  Reknarja buried his face in his teacup to hide a smile with that and his beard hid his cheek muscles.

“He was very brave,” Klaimera said.  “I can tell by how afraid he was.  I never imagined he could be that afraid of anything.  Something else that struck me is what someone told me, that all Yeoli war-schools are designed for that ceremony.”

“They are,” Sukala confirmed.  “There are nine questions the person is asked, and places in the war-school matched to each of them.”

“But they are war-schools, not no-war schools,” Reknarja protested.  “That doesn’t make any sense.  No offense, Amaesta.”  Sukala just smiled beatifically, without answering him.

“I was afraid he’d go back on his decision to go asa kraiya,”  Kallijas said somberly.  “He nearly did.”

“He had to fight to let go of the sword,” I put in.

“I think he might have failed,” said Klaimera, “if it wasn’t for... his shadow-father, right, that man with the grey-black hair who’d been thumbed?  Whatever he said, that’s when it happened.”

“I wasn’t sure I saw what I thought I saw,” I said.  “It seemed to me that, well... never mind it just can’t be.”  Kallijas raised an eyebrow at me.

“What?  What did you think you saw?” Sukala asked, smiling.  I sipped my tea, trying to clear my throat.

“I know what I saw,” Klaimera said.  “There was a spirit-sword in him.  The healer pulled it out.”

“And it was silvery-grey and bloody?”  I said.

“Yes, and the pommel was like the sword he carried, the Yeoli national sword: a ring.”


I am posting short, sorry, but I got married today.  Pictures to come.

Tomorrow I will be driving back to Canada, so I will likely not post.  Also sorry.

It's complicated. Really. 


  1. Congratulations on your marriage!! May you enjoy many happy years together and find strength, love and comfort in each others arms, and may all of life richest blessings be yours.

  2. Congratulations!!! I hope you are very happy together.

    btw this is klklikitty on a borrowed connection with no access to my lj account.

  3. Mrowowwwwwl! In a motel in Effington Il. Dead tired.


  5. Thank you, GV! Ninja wedding planning...