29 Storis, 1138
Time refused to behave. Committing murder probably took moments of clock time, but part of me would never leave those few seconds. I can’t make myself live from one second to the next when time itself won’t cooperate. Hundreds of thoughts wanted my immediate attention. My skin itched where the blood dried.
My heart started to pound — the panic always comes after — and amazingly, my mind helped. You should apologize to Danna Grenlin. Continue reading “Rien’s Rebellion 35 – 29 Storis 1138 Rien”
29 Storis, 1138
The room was black before I returned to it. I don’t know where my mind went after the man fell, but my face was wet and something distant hurt. My throat burned — tears or vomit. If I screamed, someone would have come. Night’s fallen. I sat in the dark, holding my companion’s body, her murderer on the floor beside us. Continue reading “Rien’s Rebellion 33 – 29 Storis 1138 Rien”
23 Storis, 1138
I’d forgotten my scheduled tenday leave. Generals don’t get them, but Advocates must rest their Ingeniae. The border had been busier than expected, and given the choice of staring at my walls or taking the time, I wanted away.
If I rode hard, I’d make Celestan in two days. I’d have to stop overnight, but Watable lay in the path. I should talk to the Teregenitor while the Prava’s in autumn recess anyway. He’ll be home. I sent flash messages to him and Rien, then spent the afternoon ordering my files.
The heliograph officer on duty told me the Celestan station was out; they were getting a storm, but he had a reply from Watable. Rien won’t mind a surprise. Watable’s reply read, Best possible time. Women gone. Lethian Retreat. Thank the gods. See you tomorrow. Continue reading “Rien’s Rebellion 32: 23-28 Storis 1138 Ragin”
29 Storis 1138
In the morning, we returned to the office to work on Teregenia Silvalt’s case. I left the Company file on our table; Bran had mentioned he was staying at the Belleview, and I’d invited him to a late supper. No need to drag him out in a Wet ice storm when I could deliver his passcard. As for his survivor or partner or whatever the mysterious Quin Byssus was, Avah dropped the subject and I wouldn’t resurrect it. Bran could tell me what that man meant to him any time.
Avah disappeared at midday — another session with the tooth Healer — and my office grew cluttered as marked books accumulated on my worktables and floor. I shoved a stack of genealogies on the floor deeper under my desk and heard the odd sound of something rolling, then striking the wall. Continue reading “Rien’s Rebellion 31 – 29 Storis 1138 Rien”
22 Prunalis to 21 Orcharis, Archilia’s Day 1138
By First Summer’s Night, I could finally look up from mundane law and get outside of myself. The panics still came and my face still seemed subtly off, but my shoulder was as Healed as it ever would be and my ribs were knitted.
I used the leisure to begin my other project, around my work — figuring out what came next. I received at least one urgent flash message from Savrin a tenday, and two or three letters, all asking my advice. I always responded, he never seemed to listen, and the questions were always variations on the theme of working with the Prava. He didn’t seem to learn from what I wrote. He made no mention whatsoever of my status, nor of any progress on returning me to my place. As expected. Continue reading “Rien’s Rebellion 24 – Summer 1138 Rien”
15 Imbris 1138
Dat Lani had folded herself on the floor cushions of her cramped, windowless room when she came in after what looked like a long shift. She was a small, taut woman, like twenty stone of muscle compressed down to ten. Like most of the Western Army, she kept her hair cropped short and she’d acquired a permanent sunburn and squint. Here at a rear garrison, she wasn’t the only woman within sixty milliae, but the men still outnumbered her at least ten to one. Most women out here are Healers — that ingeniae can’t be wasted just because she needs to squat to pee. Continue reading “Rien’s Rebellion 22 – 15 Imbris 1138 Ragin”
5 Imbris, 1138
“Go,” I said for the ninth time as Avah and I checked off the manifest of records and legal books for the carter to take to the docks. The steam launch to Celestan would take us tomorrow at noon, and I, for one, anticipated the three days of enforced leisure. “It’s your family party, please, if you don’t go enjoy it, I will be highly irritated.”
“Rien, you’re leaving, too. We skipped your birthing day and I shan’t let you sit alone in an empty house while I — “
I spun her around and gave her a small shake. “Avah, all I want tonight is a cassia bun and a book and a night’s sleep. I already told Ethene and Mina and Meri goodbye, that I cannot manage more and they entirely understood, so please, follow their examples. I’m exhausted.” Continue reading “Rien’s Rebellion 17 – 5 Imbris 1138 Rien”