[identity profile] pirate-mystic.livejournal.com
Moments after the apocalypse fails

So many things I meant to do, these past years. Maybe leave Excolo, go find my sister and my baby, who'll have babies of her own now, she survived. Never happened. Seems like I can't leave this land, with my goddess gone into it.

Can feel her in the rain, turn my face up to it. Know this's what I've been kept alive for, all these times. Fightin' I could always do.

All them things come crawlin' up like from nightmares, but the folks're worst, folks who've gave 'emselves over to him like I nearly did back then, by mistake. Killin' folk I've known, it just cuts me up inside, makes me sick. Ain't nothin' I can do, tho, save keep shootin' an then cuttin', with my goddess in the rain soakin' all through everythin', until the tide turns.

Oh m'lady. Deep well, sweet water, like we used t'sing. Always held me up, kept me from sinkin', even after you gone.

Others fightin' on our side, Her side, the blue city dream's side. See a woman in armour go by fast in the smoke an' rain on a pale horse, face like somethin' come apart. Lookin' like she oughta be on the other side, but she's on ours, an ain't we learned in the last years that beauty ain't goodness ain't beauty. Fine lady upon a white horse. Raise a hand to her as she goes.

I ain't gonna last much longer. Bleedin' from my side and shoulder, all red salt into the rain. Ready, though. I am.

Cut takes me to the back of the thighs, hamstringin'. Gut wound after, an they move on, know I ain't a threat now. 'M on my back, an the rain's fillin' up my mouth. Feels like the river risin'. The mountain rising from the water is the city whose powers are apparent, old old words to Her. I done good in the end, I know. I done good.

Closed
[identity profile] pirate-mystic.livejournal.com
Wednesday, the 24th of September
Town


Everythin's changed.

I felt her go, my goddess, sinking down through me into the land, and I sat up from where I was huddled in that doorway and I saw everythin' clear, just for that moment.

First thing I done's open up my bag and take out that mask and smash it, butt of my rifle hard into it. Cracked right down the middle, into two pieces. Can feel my mind cloudin' up again so I wrap it up in my coat an get up. Don't know where she went, Nanshe, but I'm gonna find out, and get me fixed up too. Somethin' happened to her and I was too busy runnin' round thinkin' everyone was out to get me. I let her down.

Gettin' dark when I come by the Abbey. Door opens in the dimness, yellow light all welcomin'. I got a lot of fixin' and mendin' to do, and it's time I got started.

[Closed]
[identity profile] syl-thorn.livejournal.com
[Just past midnight, Thursday, August 14, day 445]
[The woods]


(Continued from here)

I still really ain't sure where we are. We been walkin' ferrat least a couple hours now, but th'clouds've covered th'moon, an'I can't judge what time't might be. Long 'nough fer th'wound'n m'should t'clot over an' m'arm t'go stiff's old leather. Ain't much else I c'n say beyond'at.

Glass'n me ain't spoken much, partly cuz we's both burnt out, partly 'cuz we wanna stay's quiet's possible. I ain't seen neither'a th'bitches since I left'em trapped'n screamin', but I ain't gonna count us 's anywhere near safe 'til we's outta th'woods 'n safe in our beds.

Pause's we cross into a clearin'. "Any idea how much further we got t'go?" I says inna whisper.


[OPEN to those from the previous scene, and others should they choose]
[identity profile] syl-thorn.livejournal.com
[Early evening, Wednesday, August 13th, day 444]
[The woods outside town]


Woke up'is mornin' when the sky wuz th'deep blue'a th'sea bottom, m'breath stranglin'n m'throat, and a pain'n m'head't threatened t'push m'eyes from'eir sockets. I sat up, chokin' 'n clawin't m'throat, wond'rin' dully if'n m'head wuz gonna burst 'fore I strangled, an'en't wuz done. Th'air'n m'lungs pushed out hard, there wuzza flash 'fore m'eyes, an'en th'pain wuz gone. But not b'fore I heard somethin', a weird screamin' noise somewhere deep'n th'mist. Closest thin' t'it've ever heard s'when I came 'pon a mama vixen'n th'woods, she stood up from'er cubs'n fuckin' screamed at me. This sound wuz like'at...but wit'n edge, like th'bone squeal'a teeth grindin'n pain. Dunno what't wuz, but't made me feel sick'n pale'n sweaty, an' I didn't sleep no more after'at.

Seems mosta th'others'n th'Carnival felt somethin' th'same. Lotta folk woke up'n th'night, 'r member a chokin' spell...nobody else mentioned the scream, though. I don't mention it neither, but think mebbe I oughta go talk t'Nanshe soon's I can. Whatever't wuz, don't think't meant anythin' good.

Fer t'day, though, there's work t'be done. Can't b'lieve th'summer's near t'ended. We's headed fer our second winter innis town, an'I think mosta us're resigned t'it. Somma th'folks'a been lettin'eir wagons go, lettin' th'wheels sink inta th'ground, 'r settin'em on blocks. Some folks've built shacks 're rented places in town. Some've taken jobs, too, part time 'r full. Can't blame'em, really, since'ere ain't allat much money comin' in fer the rides 'r games no more. There's a feelin' on th'Lot now't we might never leave, annit makes m'skin itch.

Me, I still keep m'wagon ready t'move, an'm makin' 'nough cash sellin' potions'n charms, so'm doin' okay. Smokey's gettin' fat, though, 'e's spendin' so much time'n pasture. I ain't never learned t'ride'r nothin', so'ere really ain't nothin' for'im t'do. Guess I could rent'im out t'folks in town, but I dunno. In some ways't makes me feel like'm puttin' down roots m'self, an'at jes' makes me twitch.

At least I still got work t'do. Shoulder m'satchel 'n head out inta th'woods. Rain's gone, but'ere's a cool breeze, so I throw on m'jacket, 'n pull boots on 'gainst th'mud 'n wet grass. Th'woods 'n th'river here've been good t'me, at least in terms've finding materials. Roots 'n herbs, moss 'n bone. Miss somma th'stuff I c'n get 'n th'south (Christ, I miss olive oil), but gotta say, gathered a lotta stuff last winter't I can't normally get, annit came in right handy over th'past few months.

...Lord, guess I better start thinkin' 'bout getting th'heaters set back up inna few weeks. Jesus wept.

[OPEN to Reed and Catherine primarily, but others too]
[identity profile] catherineknight.livejournal.com
[Early morning, Monday, August 9th, day 435]
[The park]


I'm beginning to have doubts.

Not about coming here, of course...I have no doubt whatsoever that God has guided me here to do battle with the most ancient of evils. But in some way I must have failed to follow his guidance. That can be the only reason why it has been so much time has passed and I have not yet found battle.

Oh, he is here...I have heard the same thing from too many folk to have any doubt. I have even rode out past the water tower, clad in my armour, my weapons at my side. I shouted my challenge at him, Hirondelle pawed restlessly, and we waited...but the demon did not emerge. In frustration, I sent Hirondelle off at a hard gallop, and we rode until both of us dripped with sweat, but my desire was still unquenched. The fault is mine, I know...but I am lost as to what to do.

Now, it is weeks later, and I still haven't made any progress, and I feel I'm no closer to finding the battle that I seek. It sets me shifting in my saddle, my fingers gripping tightly at the reins. Hirondelle senses my tension, and she snorts and dances, finally setting off at a high-stepping trot down the gravel path. I should rein her in, but I don't. Maybe some exercise will make us both feel better. But inside me, my soul boils. I left the sect to seek out evil, to do battle and bring it down...and I am determined to do those things before my disease cripples me. But now that I've done the first, what must I do to accomplish the rest?

[OPEN to Reed and possibly others]
[identity profile] tereixa-zann.livejournal.com
[Early afternoon of Thursday, May 20 (day 354)]
[Out and about at the Miskatonic Café]


I can see. I can see.

I woke up by the Carousel yesterday morning before dawn, my shining girl, my baby, running sweet and bright and singing out into the night, the piping skirl. And I saw all of her, the grandfather's-axe truth that stretches here from the time before the end of time, the machinery and fine gears from when the railways were young and the air was just beginning to sing with crystal and people were reaching out across the seas and skies and the whole world was beginning to be held in the net of our meaning. And she came up through that, went on while all the air and earth around her turned to dust and then to smoke and the things we built grew smaller, finer, and then the air was full of tiny things broken and light pouring out and still she was here, my baby, wood and gears and paint and the calliope tune, on forever and forever and forever through the night, because that is what we do, we make music and shape sound and we give it meaning, we give it all meaning. Even when it grows old, even when it will come to go, the seeing and the making sings through us all and within us...

Oh, within us, every moment, we find the heartbeat of creation.

And yesterday I spent with Mama and Dad and Essa and Sabella and Xay, and Jay and Hux, and Genny, and my Carousel, and the rides stretching up through the sky into a summer sea of heat and the bolts and gears biting deep and steady in and the breeze singing in the strut and stretch of girders, and we built this, we built it all, and I would do it for nothing more than to do it, to please people and to stand in the hot air and the summer night, and all of this how can it be wrong?

And today the air is cooling gently as if the world was taking a deep breath in and a slow breeze was blowing, and down to the Miskatonic, all gilded and green, an undersea dream of pipes and steam and music younger than my Carousel and older than anyone I've met--anyone else, I know, older than anyone who wouldn't panick over being loved. And the road smells of cobble-dust and worn asphalt tar, and the air inside smells of coffee and sugar and bread and eggs, and the jukebox is playing, and if I spin around once before I sit down and I'm laughing, who'd gainsay me? It's such a beautiful day.

[Open]
[identity profile] tereixa-zann.livejournal.com
[Early afternoon of Thursday, May 20 (day 354)]
[Out and about at the Miskatonic Café]


I can see. I can see.

I woke up by the Carousel yesterday morning before dawn, my shining girl, my baby, running sweet and bright and singing out into the night, the piping skirl. And I saw all of her, the grandfather's-axe truth that stretches here from the time before the end of time, the machinery and fine gears from when the railways were young and the air was just beginning to sing with crystal and people were reaching out across the seas and skies and the whole world was beginning to be held in the net of our meaning. And she came up through that, went on while all the air and earth around her turned to dust and then to smoke and the things we built grew smaller, finer, and then the air was full of tiny things broken and light pouring out and still she was here, my baby, wood and gears and paint and the calliope tune, on forever and forever and forever through the night, because that is what we do, we make music and shape sound and we give it meaning, we give it all meaning. Even when it grows old, even when it will come to go, the seeing and the making sings through us all and within us...

Oh, within us, every moment, we find the heartbeat of creation.

And yesterday I spent with Mama and Dad and Essa and Sabella and Xay, and Jay and Hux, and Genny, and my Carousel, and the rides stretching up through the sky into a summer sea of heat and the bolts and gears biting deep and steady in and the breeze singing in the strut and stretch of girders, and we built this, we built it all, and I would do it for nothing more than to do it, to please people and to stand in the hot air and the summer night, and all of this how can it be wrong?

And today the air is cooling gently as if the world was taking a deep breath in and a slow breeze was blowing, and down to the Miskatonic, all gilded and green, an undersea dream of pipes and steam and music younger than my Carousel and older than anyone I've met--anyone else, I know, older than anyone who wouldn't panick over being loved. And the road smells of cobble-dust and worn asphalt tar, and the air inside smells of coffee and sugar and bread and eggs, and the jukebox is playing, and if I spin around once before I sit down and I'm laughing, who'd gainsay me? It's such a beautiful day.

[Open]
[identity profile] npc-excolo.livejournal.com
Dream.

There is a great sea. The sky is grey, the water green, and the seafoam is the flecked white of milk on the turn. The shore is stone and shingle, and the cliffs are bone-shades. Will you wake on the little fishing boat that rides the waves, wary of great beasts that lurk beneath the surface, or on the cold and stony shore? Or perhaps as some watery thing yourself, breathing in water as cold as ice and with a salt-iron taste like blood?

[OPEN TO ALL]
[identity profile] npc-excolo.livejournal.com
Dream.

There is a great sea. The sky is grey, the water green, and the seafoam is the flecked white of milk on the turn. The shore is stone and shingle, and the cliffs are bone-shades. Will you wake on the little fishing boat that rides the waves, wary of great beasts that lurk beneath the surface, or on the cold and stony shore? Or perhaps as some watery thing yourself, breathing in water as cold as ice and with a salt-iron taste like blood?

[OPEN TO ALL]
[identity profile] pirate-mystic.livejournal.com
Saturday, March 13th
Reed's cottage


They hanged that man. That soldier. Still feelin strange about that. Not cause he didn't deserve to die, but. When they put me in the jail, I saw him a time or two, 'cluding that day everyone went strange. Second time, I mean, cause I saw him the first time, too, when half the damn town lost their memories. Was like there was - somethin - between us, both times, and it weren't nothin good.

Hanged him cause he was a monster, an he surely was. Who knows what all else they been keepin on that carnival lot, now? Always said they weren't to be trusted. But they was monsters as hanged him, too, an I saw their faces plain that day.

Ain't no one listenin.

Been out here since Miao threw me out. Ain't goin to hold any grudge, cause I reckon they got to her. To her mind. They got half the town now, that I seen. Least half. Heard people're still disappearin, even though they hanged that soldier.

No one comin out here now, no one from the town. Quiet out here, an the only folk I see are out on the farms when I go to buy food, cos I got none laid in for the winter. Just sit in the evenin, in the almost-dark. Everythin out here seemin dark and rough now. Sometimes I hold my mask, or put it against my face: only pretty thing I got left, from my time at the 'Boy. Look at my hands against it, all dark an rough too. Feel like I could crawl outta my skin.

Feller came through not long past, claimed he was a tinker. They done him up well, I grant - he brung out his pots an pans an needles. Didn't fool me any. Knew they sent him out to spy on me, cause they knows I know. I let him in, an I gave him oatmeal an coffee cause he come out of a storm all blown about an wet as a drowned rat. An I kept watchin him. Feelin an itch in my hand for my old horse pistol. One knock with the handle'd do it, crack his skull. Put him in the ground where he belong, with the rest of the monsters. Just watchin him, standing back behind him while he ate. One good whack on the head, just like killin a rabbit.

Think he done something to me, that soldier, when we was in jail. Made me think like that. I ain't goin killin no one when I given them food under my own roof, though. I ain't. Nanshe, she won't hold with that, even if she gone and turned her back on me these days. I still pray, but it feels like shoutin underwater: ain't no one hearin, or if they are, they ain't understandin.

More people goin to be comin round, now the season's changin. Wonder who they goin to send this time.

Said he was a tinker, but I weren't fooled. Just like killin a rabbit.

[Closed]
[identity profile] pirate-mystic.livejournal.com
Saturday, March 13th
Reed's cottage


They hanged that man. That soldier. Still feelin strange about that. Not cause he didn't deserve to die, but. When they put me in the jail, I saw him a time or two, 'cluding that day everyone went strange. Second time, I mean, cause I saw him the first time, too, when half the damn town lost their memories. Was like there was - somethin - between us, both times, and it weren't nothin good.

Hanged him cause he was a monster, an he surely was. Who knows what all else they been keepin on that carnival lot, now? Always said they weren't to be trusted. But they was monsters as hanged him, too, an I saw their faces plain that day.

Ain't no one listenin.

Been out here since Miao threw me out. Ain't goin to hold any grudge, cause I reckon they got to her. To her mind. They got half the town now, that I seen. Least half. Heard people're still disappearin, even though they hanged that soldier.

No one comin out here now, no one from the town. Quiet out here, an the only folk I see are out on the farms when I go to buy food, cos I got none laid in for the winter. Just sit in the evenin, in the almost-dark. Everythin out here seemin dark and rough now. Sometimes I hold my mask, or put it against my face: only pretty thing I got left, from my time at the 'Boy. Look at my hands against it, all dark an rough too. Feel like I could crawl outta my skin.

Feller came through not long past, claimed he was a tinker. They done him up well, I grant - he brung out his pots an pans an needles. Didn't fool me any. Knew they sent him out to spy on me, cause they knows I know. I let him in, an I gave him oatmeal an coffee cause he come out of a storm all blown about an wet as a drowned rat. An I kept watchin him. Feelin an itch in my hand for my old horse pistol. One knock with the handle'd do it, crack his skull. Put him in the ground where he belong, with the rest of the monsters. Just watchin him, standing back behind him while he ate. One good whack on the head, just like killin a rabbit.

Think he done something to me, that soldier, when we was in jail. Made me think like that. I ain't goin killin no one when I given them food under my own roof, though. I ain't. Nanshe, she won't hold with that, even if she gone and turned her back on me these days. I still pray, but it feels like shoutin underwater: ain't no one hearin, or if they are, they ain't understandin.

More people goin to be comin round, now the season's changin. Wonder who they goin to send this time.

Said he was a tinker, but I weren't fooled. Just like killin a rabbit.

[Closed]
[identity profile] al-shairan.livejournal.com
“The silence often of pure innocence persuades when speaking fails.”
- Shakespeare


Monday lunchtime, near the sheriff's office, on Main Street

This has proved almost too easy. The clouds are rolling in, air heavy with the promise of rain, and I stand in my Danika body wearing an old coat with the collar turned up against the cold, jacket short enough to show a few inches of a tidy, worn work dress and a calflength of wool stocking. My shoes wear the signs of good, honest farm labour, and my blonde hair is frizzing round my face in the damp air. I look very distressed.

"Did - was there really a man arrested for... for beating on a girl?" I say to an old woman gossiping with her friend on the street. My fingers flutter together anxiously.

"Oh yes," she says, "it's a horrible thing. They think also he did in a girl as worked at - well, the brothel, my dear," she says, lowering her voice over that salacious detail, eyes gleaming with prurient interest. "They think he chopped her up."

"Oh," I say, and I faint very neatly to the ground. It's not long before I have half a dozen people round me - offering water, saying they will take me to the Dormouse, fussing with my coat collar to let me breathe.

"I should've said something," I say, and I burst into tears. That gets me sat down on a bench, an old woman's arm around my shoulders, and a very handsome young man crouched at my feet. "I should - "

"What is is, dear? Do you know something about what happened to those girls?"

I shake my head tightly.

"I know - I know - him," I say quietly. "He - We went out a couple of times, and he was - he was real nice to me, and -" The old woman gives me a handkerchief. "You know, I ain't really dated much," I say, shamefaced, "cos my momma's sick a bunch and I'm busy out on the farm, and he just - he was real nice, and when he -" I turn my face away, and I can feel the vibrating tension from the boy at my feet, his desire to be a hero. "He - I thought it was my fault," I say, and then there is a furious chatter rising from the little crowd, and the conversation spreads in ripples.

"Some carnie's been carving up our girls," one man says fiercely. And there is discussion of me and of Melania - ah, yes, that explains some of what I saw in her - and how we're hard working girls, salt of the earth girls, and who is this monster and why hasn't he been strung up? What the hell is wrong with this town that a murderer and molester can be caught redhanded and he's cosseted in jail? And did you hear that he attacked that nice Mrs Beddau (I wonder if at any other time Glass has been described as nice) when she went to visit him in prison? He should be put in the old stocks in town. People would show him how they felt, alright. They'd show him very clearly indeed.

I manage a brave, trembling smile for the boy at my feet, and he springs up, ready for something, anything, if it will make me look at him like that again. And I nestle in against the arm of the old woman as the crowd grows larger and voices grow louder, and I wait for the storm to break.

[OPEN]
[identity profile] al-shairan.livejournal.com
“The silence often of pure innocence persuades when speaking fails.”
- Shakespeare


Monday lunchtime, near the sheriff's office, on Main Street

This has proved almost too easy. The clouds are rolling in, air heavy with the promise of rain, and I stand in my Danika body wearing an old coat with the collar turned up against the cold, jacket short enough to show a few inches of a tidy, worn work dress and a calflength of wool stocking. My shoes wear the signs of good, honest farm labour, and my blonde hair is frizzing round my face in the damp air. I look very distressed.

"Did - was there really a man arrested for... for beating on a girl?" I say to an old woman gossiping with her friend on the street. My fingers flutter together anxiously.

"Oh yes," she says, "it's a horrible thing. They think also he did in a girl as worked at - well, the brothel, my dear," she says, lowering her voice over that salacious detail, eyes gleaming with prurient interest. "They think he chopped her up."

"Oh," I say, and I faint very neatly to the ground. It's not long before I have half a dozen people round me - offering water, saying they will take me to the Dormouse, fussing with my coat collar to let me breathe.

"I should've said something," I say, and I burst into tears. That gets me sat down on a bench, an old woman's arm around my shoulders, and a very handsome young man crouched at my feet. "I should - "

"What is is, dear? Do you know something about what happened to those girls?"

I shake my head tightly.

"I know - I know - him," I say quietly. "He - We went out a couple of times, and he was - he was real nice to me, and -" The old woman gives me a handkerchief. "You know, I ain't really dated much," I say, shamefaced, "cos my momma's sick a bunch and I'm busy out on the farm, and he just - he was real nice, and when he -" I turn my face away, and I can feel the vibrating tension from the boy at my feet, his desire to be a hero. "He - I thought it was my fault," I say, and then there is a furious chatter rising from the little crowd, and the conversation spreads in ripples.

"Some carnie's been carving up our girls," one man says fiercely. And there is discussion of me and of Melania - ah, yes, that explains some of what I saw in her - and how we're hard working girls, salt of the earth girls, and who is this monster and why hasn't he been strung up? What the hell is wrong with this town that a murderer and molester can be caught redhanded and he's cosseted in jail? And did you hear that he attacked that nice Mrs Beddau (I wonder if at any other time Glass has been described as nice) when she went to visit him in prison? He should be put in the old stocks in town. People would show him how they felt, alright. They'd show him very clearly indeed.

I manage a brave, trembling smile for the boy at my feet, and he springs up, ready for something, anything, if it will make me look at him like that again. And I nestle in against the arm of the old woman as the crowd grows larger and voices grow louder, and I wait for the storm to break.

[OPEN]
[identity profile] kateohara.livejournal.com
Saturday, January 30th, evening

I'm not quite sure how I feel about tonight. Nervous, and happy, and a bit shy all at once, I think. After the business with Damien and Johnny I've felt my nerves have had more grounds - though it's more for Tess's sake than mine. I can just imagine what people will be saying about the Thiesses now they know about Johnny and Damien, and when they realise about me and Tess. I hate the thought of being the subject of petty gossip, but I can't stand the thought of it happening to Tess.

I told Amanda today that Tess is my sweetheart. I could tell that she'd been wanting to ask all week; working at the store it wasn't hard for her to figure out that Tess had been staying over regularly, and this week she could tell Tess was here every day. I could see she wanted to ask but also didn't know how, and in the end I was tired of dancing around the subject. So when we cashed up the register I told her.

She burst into tears. It wasn't what I had expected. Shock, yes, and perhaps even disgust, but not tears. It took me five minutes to get her calm enough so I could hear what she was saying. She said she liked me so very much, and she'd never been happier than she's been in this job, and she hated to think of me going to hell.

I think, overall, I would have preferred it if she'd been angry. What do you say when someone's crying because they're worried for your soul? I gave her a glass of water, and I said I had wondered about that myself, but I was pretty certain love was a good thing, a kind thing. After a while she stopped crying, and she said I hoped I was right.

I'm pretty sure she'll come back to work next week. I think it will be alright. It didn't put me in a party frame of mind, though, but I don't let myself indulge in self-pity. We've got about a dozen people arriving in half an hour, and I've got the food all ready. It's a buffet with simple, tasty dishes easy to cook in bulk - a green bean casserole, mashed potatoes, macaroni cheese, a roast chicken, a pork casserole - and apple pie and plum cobbler for dessert. I didn't want to make party food; I wanted food that felt like home. People can just help themselves when they arrive, and sit or stand and talk. I don't think Tess and I want much fuss.

I still want to look nice, though, and so once everything is ready - the dishes sitting in the oven to keep warm, the plates and glasses set out on the sideboard - I go into the bedroom to get myself fixed up. My pretty but simple navy dress will do, I think.

[open to invited guests!]
[identity profile] kateohara.livejournal.com
Saturday, January 30th, evening

I'm not quite sure how I feel about tonight. Nervous, and happy, and a bit shy all at once, I think. After the business with Damien and Johnny I've felt my nerves have had more grounds - though it's more for Tess's sake than mine. I can just imagine what people will be saying about the Thiesses now they know about Johnny and Damien, and when they realise about me and Tess. I hate the thought of being the subject of petty gossip, but I can't stand the thought of it happening to Tess.

I told Amanda today that Tess is my sweetheart. I could tell that she'd been wanting to ask all week; working at the store it wasn't hard for her to figure out that Tess had been staying over regularly, and this week she could tell Tess was here every day. I could see she wanted to ask but also didn't know how, and in the end I was tired of dancing around the subject. So when we cashed up the register I told her.

She burst into tears. It wasn't what I had expected. Shock, yes, and perhaps even disgust, but not tears. It took me five minutes to get her calm enough so I could hear what she was saying. She said she liked me so very much, and she'd never been happier than she's been in this job, and she hated to think of me going to hell.

I think, overall, I would have preferred it if she'd been angry. What do you say when someone's crying because they're worried for your soul? I gave her a glass of water, and I said I had wondered about that myself, but I was pretty certain love was a good thing, a kind thing. After a while she stopped crying, and she said I hoped I was right.

I'm pretty sure she'll come back to work next week. I think it will be alright. It didn't put me in a party frame of mind, though, but I don't let myself indulge in self-pity. We've got about a dozen people arriving in half an hour, and I've got the food all ready. It's a buffet with simple, tasty dishes easy to cook in bulk - a green bean casserole, mashed potatoes, macaroni cheese, a roast chicken, a pork casserole - and apple pie and plum cobbler for dessert. I didn't want to make party food; I wanted food that felt like home. People can just help themselves when they arrive, and sit or stand and talk. I don't think Tess and I want much fuss.

I still want to look nice, though, and so once everything is ready - the dishes sitting in the oven to keep warm, the plates and glasses set out on the sideboard - I go into the bedroom to get myself fixed up. My pretty but simple navy dress will do, I think.

[open to invited guests!]
[identity profile] glass-beddau.livejournal.com
[Fifteen minutes past amnesia, January 13 (day 227)]
[Miskatonic Café]


I'm on the road. On a street, rather, neat cobbles and scabs of snow and buildings (in fine enough repair, low-built, a storey or two; lived in, like enough) under the grey air. Sun's overhead through dim clouds and I'm guessing it to be midday.

I've no mind for where I am. None at all.

Catch myself and a quick glance back and 'round isn't showing me anyone I think I need mind, and I keep walking as if I'd some mind for where I was going. Pass a building smells of fresh-cut wood and another with mannequins and glossed clothes in the window, and at least none of what I'm seeing so far is making me worry. There's a woman crossing into the gated garden on the other side of the street, walking easy and alone, and the glass of the windows is split into smaller panes in places but it's not broken nor laced with bars. Safe enough to walk here for now, I think.

The street ends and another crosses it, and I see what I'm guessing's a general store only a touch to my left. Consider it a moment, but not sure what I'd say, and no mind for how well they'll take to me there or how long I could watch. There's an eating house near to it, though, signed up as the Miskatonic Café. Slip a hand into my pocket to check, and there's coin enough I think I can sit down and gather my bearings. Open the door to the Café and find myself glancing up startled at the music pouring out like churchsong, the interior like a green sea laced with brass foam. Not seen the like to this in ages.

Sit down and order a coffee and glance around when it comes. Wrap my hands 'round the cup and there's a dull chink of stone on porcelain, and I turn my palm towards my eyes to see--

Spit and staunchweed. Blink away the glitter and touch one hand to my temple, run my fingers back light across my hair, find it pinned back.

Well, then. Apparently I'm wed, whatever else I might be (and with that ring, guessing my husband's something of a-- I want to say magpie, and that seems not quite right). Carrying little enough and well turned-out enough that I've a place to stay, here, to keep a change of warmer clothes at the least, heavier boots, a gathering bag. And my hair's long enough to pin back, as well, suggests I might've settled here a while...

Start setting out what's in my pockets on the table as if it's of no never-mind, and seeing what I might have set in them as would mean anything. Glance around as I'm doing so, but I'm not seeing anyone I place.

[Open]
[Closed]
[identity profile] glass-beddau.livejournal.com
[Fifteen minutes past amnesia, January 13 (day 227)]
[Miskatonic Café]


I'm on the road. On a street, rather, neat cobbles and scabs of snow and buildings (in fine enough repair, low-built, a storey or two; lived in, like enough) under the grey air. Sun's overhead through dim clouds and I'm guessing it to be midday.

I've no mind for where I am. None at all.

Catch myself and a quick glance back and 'round isn't showing me anyone I think I need mind, and I keep walking as if I'd some mind for where I was going. Pass a building smells of fresh-cut wood and another with mannequins and glossed clothes in the window, and at least none of what I'm seeing so far is making me worry. There's a woman crossing into the gated garden on the other side of the street, walking easy and alone, and the glass of the windows is split into smaller panes in places but it's not broken nor laced with bars. Safe enough to walk here for now, I think.

The street ends and another crosses it, and I see what I'm guessing's a general store only a touch to my left. Consider it a moment, but not sure what I'd say, and no mind for how well they'll take to me there or how long I could watch. There's an eating house near to it, though, signed up as the Miskatonic Café. Slip a hand into my pocket to check, and there's coin enough I think I can sit down and gather my bearings. Open the door to the Café and find myself glancing up startled at the music pouring out like churchsong, the interior like a green sea laced with brass foam. Not seen the like to this in ages.

Sit down and order a coffee and glance around when it comes. Wrap my hands 'round the cup and there's a dull chink of stone on porcelain, and I turn my palm towards my eyes to see--

Spit and staunchweed. Blink away the glitter and touch one hand to my temple, run my fingers back light across my hair, find it pinned back.

Well, then. Apparently I'm wed, whatever else I might be (and with that ring, guessing my husband's something of a-- I want to say magpie, and that seems not quite right). Carrying little enough and well turned-out enough that I've a place to stay, here, to keep a change of warmer clothes at the least, heavier boots, a gathering bag. And my hair's long enough to pin back, as well, suggests I might've settled here a while...

Start setting out what's in my pockets on the table as if it's of no never-mind, and seeing what I might have set in them as would mean anything. Glance around as I'm doing so, but I'm not seeing anyone I place.

[Open]
[Closed]
[identity profile] lei-miao-shan.livejournal.com
[Late afternoon, Monday, January 4th, day 218]
[Follow Me Boy]



The day has finally come. I wish so very much that I could say that I was ready...and I wish even more that this was not necessary at all. It seems such a terribly irony that not so long ago I dressed the house in the trappings on a funeral for Wanda...and just as they are to come down....this occurs. And the cloths are cast over the mirrors, the gong set outside the door, the red silk veiling my goddesses...only this time there shall be a coffin to shield them from.

Struck on the head. Hung by her ankles. Boiled. Carved. Possibly cooked. Oh, Vale. Oh, I can hardly bear to think of it. Poor Vale, so silly and so sweet, so kind to her clients and eager to talk about her day with me. The kind of girl destined to meet a wealthy gentleman, to be invited into his household, be pampered and cared for and eventually sent away with enough "gifts" to last a lifetime. Not this. Poor, poor Vale. She was with us but a short time, but we will do our best for her. She deserved that much.

I dress in white again, the lack of colour a symbol of the presence of death in the house. The coffin is downstairs, in what would normally be the parlour. Glass and Lucien brought it...and Vale...here earlier today. We are closed for today, but I put out an announcement in the town that anyone who wished to pay their respects was welcome. Tomorrow morning poor, dear Vale will be placed in a crypt to wait for the ground to thaw.

I sigh, slipping an ivory comb into my hair before standing and moving to the stairs. Folk will be arriving soon, and I must be there to greet them.

[OPEN to those who wish to pay their respects]
[identity profile] lei-miao-shan.livejournal.com
[Late afternoon, Monday, January 4th, day 218]
[Follow Me Boy]



The day has finally come. I wish so very much that I could say that I was ready...and I wish even more that this was not necessary at all. It seems such a terribly irony that not so long ago I dressed the house in the trappings on a funeral for Wanda...and just as they are to come down....this occurs. And the cloths are cast over the mirrors, the gong set outside the door, the red silk veiling my goddesses...only this time there shall be a coffin to shield them from.

Struck on the head. Hung by her ankles. Boiled. Carved. Possibly cooked. Oh, Vale. Oh, I can hardly bear to think of it. Poor Vale, so silly and so sweet, so kind to her clients and eager to talk about her day with me. The kind of girl destined to meet a wealthy gentleman, to be invited into his household, be pampered and cared for and eventually sent away with enough "gifts" to last a lifetime. Not this. Poor, poor Vale. She was with us but a short time, but we will do our best for her. She deserved that much.

I dress in white again, the lack of colour a symbol of the presence of death in the house. The coffin is downstairs, in what would normally be the parlour. Glass and Lucien brought it...and Vale...here earlier today. We are closed for today, but I put out an announcement in the town that anyone who wished to pay their respects was welcome. Tomorrow morning poor, dear Vale will be placed in a crypt to wait for the ground to thaw.

I sigh, slipping an ivory comb into my hair before standing and moving to the stairs. Folk will be arriving soon, and I must be there to greet them.

[OPEN to those who wish to pay their respects]
[identity profile] nansekam.livejournal.com
The church; early evening of the Feast of the Nuptials of the Year

Been a long day today - up all night waiting for dawn, singing in the day with candles and evergreen, using the high holy tongue to praise our Lady on her wedding day. Nanse nin per ta pa an-se ga-la-am... We were on our knees from midnight in the church, and it was bloody freezing, our breath steaming in front of us. Fucking painful, kneeling like that. First it's uncomfortable, then it's numb, then it starts hurting again, low dull hot ache that lights into a screaming burn, and then it goes back down into an ache and an annoyance and finally, sweet-fucking-finally, numbness again. Still, we got the braziers lit as the light starting rising, and the herbs we were burning got us all high enough that the aching didn't matter so much. Still nearly fell on my face when I tried to get up. A few of the novices did topple over, poor bastards. And we greeted the first light of day by blessing the altar with water and oil, and then we broke bread all together over the altar, mopping up the oil with the slices, smell of incense and herbs in the air, and we ate for love of each other and for our goddess. Fucking ace.

Day's been busy getting the feast ready for tonight. Novices were allowed to take a nap this afternoon, but I've had too much to do to think about lying down. Still, though I haven't slept in nearly two days, I'm feeling pretty alright.

Brother Ash leads the service tonight, and I'm glad he does. Think we're all coming to terms with the fact that Oya's not coming back, and we're going to need a new abbot or abbess. I'd pick Ash, myself. Some people have said I could do it, but I don't think that'd be right. I've got a long journey yet to go before I should be in charge of a community.

Greet the congregation at the door. Get a nice turn out despite the snow. People come in carrying gifts for Nanshe and our community, filling baskets by the door with dried fruit and bolts of cloth and handfuls of silver, and as the service starts novices heft the baskets up onto their shoulders and take them up the aisle to the altar while the rest of us sing with one voice
The lady of the good utterance whose purpose cannot be taken away;
Nanshe, may she be praised in the countries!


When the service is over, each member of the congregation is handed a candle. We extinguish the lights of the church, and light instead the candles of our members, row by row. Light ripples outward in the winter dark, and the doors of the church are thrown open.

"Go in peace," says Ash. "The darkness falls in the face of our love."

I watch them go out, light spreading across the pitch black courtyard. Never get tired of this moment, not even after twenty years. Think it'll always be one of my favourite moments of the year.

Some people head home, out of the gates, but most head toward the refectory where we'll have our feast. My stomach rumbles. I'm fucking starving. But for now I stay by the door, greeting our people as they go by.


[Open to all!]

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