Caleb

Decisions are being made.

Also, BIRTH CONTROL.

The Marina Chronicle

I walked down to the cottage where Anselm lives and he was at work in his kitchen, mixing something. I had brought him some herbs and things from the manor garden and greenhouse at his request.

“Glad you found time in your busy schedule,” he said, “I thought I might never see you.” I laughed. “Is everything there?”

“Yes,” I said softly. I poured myself a cup of tea. “Mastero,” I said.

“Lisette,” he answered not looking up.

“If, hypothetically, one didn’t want to get pregnant,” I muttered, “is there some sort of potion or charm that might, you know, help with that.”

“Low magic users swear by whip willow,” he said distractedly. “It’s never been tested in a university setting. One of Aaron’s ask you?”

“No,” I mumbled, “it doesn’t matter. In a tea?”

“Do you know of another way to administer a bark than a tea?” He said…

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What Is It?

That night I sat on my bed as Olivia combed out and braided my hair.

“The beef was good,” she said. I nodded. “Did you have a nice morning?”

“I think so,” I said, eyeing the violets now sitting on my vanity. She nodded. “The Dumanis train is in town.”

“Ah,” she said, “I imagine that diverted Tristan.” I twisted and looked at her. “Andrea or Brie?”

“Charlotte, Andrea’s daughter,” I said, “you know them?” I asked. She laughed.

“I was supposed to bring Charlotte out at court, if you can believe it,” she said, “of course things changed.” I nodded. “I would have asked about Trey but I know he’d never come here.”

“Anyway, then we went to the inn, and Tristan and William behaved very oddly,” I sighed as she turned my head back to continue braiding.

“I’d imagine they would,” she said, “William’s no fool, he can spot when he has a rival.” I looked at her. “Darling, you’re not that naive, you must have realized Tristan’s regard for you.”

“Well, I suppose,” I said, “but, William??” She laughed and turned my head again.

“He came to us last year and asked to marry you,” she said. I was speechless. “We obviously couldn’t say yes, but Caleb told him you were too young, and that we were certainly not going to make such a decision for you, and that he was free to continue your friendship and ask you in a few years.”

“William has been courting me?” I asked. She laughed. “He must think I’m dense.”

“I think he thinks you’re discreet,” she said, “and now I think he thinks that he has competition.” She finished my hair. “Besides which, it’s good practice for you. Once everything is settled you’ll only have more suitors, not fewer. Not to mention it can be fun.”

“It doesn’t seem fun,” I muttered. “I like William, we’re friends and Tristan,” I sighed. “How did you do it?”

“Rather poorly in retrospect but I thought I was brilliant,” she grinned. “You’ll do fine. You’ve never lead William on, and once he learns the truth he’ll back off.”

Author’s Note: A Shift In Perspective

Hi Everyone!

So, here’s the deal. I’ve reached kind of a plot standstill, and while I try to journal, look through old journals and saved documents, and untangle the bit of a knot I’ve tied, I didn’t want to stop playing in Cammadan and sharing it with you.

I have been here since I was 15, I do know all of the beginning and end points, I know where this is going, it’s the road along the way where I get fuzzy, and sometimes things take on their own life. For a clear example based on today’s post, Marina and Lefty were supposed to flirt a bunch to make Tristan jealous, but once I put them together they fell stubbornly and frustratingly in love.

Marina’s always had a way of not doing what I want her to do. Seriously, she began life as a vaguely sci-fi psychic character in a space opera (Think River Tam, or a Jedi feeling the force), but then she popped up with a massive crush on Tristan and an inferiority complex as big as all get out, and I knew where she finally belonged.  But, now there’s this mess, and I need to get it sorted because seriously, these two were not supposed to be together. For someone so mild mannered and passive Marina can be awfully frustrating.

ANYWAY, it did seem that Marina and Lefty sleeping together, Tristan leaving and Aaron and Athena setting a date was a logical breaking point, so, we’re going to do an experiment for the summer.

I’m going back to Year 1, but we’re seeing things from Annalise’s POV this time. This is in some ways easier (I know everything that happens! I wrote it already!) and harder (Marina’s a lot more like me, personally, than Annalise, so it’s tougher to get into her head!) so it should be a fun challenge. We’ll start by covering a time period I’ve always called “The Golden Summer,” that is, the months that the twins spend at Pantona.

I’m excited for y’all to get to know Lisette and Aaron a bit better, to take a slightly kinder view of Tristan (he’s still TOTALLY the worst, but he’s way LESS the worst to Lisette than he is to Marina) and just to have a ton of time to hang out with Athena.

See you next week!

The Eve of Battle

We’re outside of the city. Everything feels terribly still. We all know what’s coming next and I feel outside of myself.

I’m still barely speaking to my father. Not that he speaks much at all. I’ve been working with Elodie and the other healers to get the potions that we need in case people are hurt. General Martin doesn’t think that we’ll only be facing shadows this time.

Annalise’s silence is the most unnerving. She’s steely, and flinty, I don’t know what changed, but she’s not like she was.

“Marina?” Aaron walked in to my tent. I looked up at him. “She wants to see you.” I nodded and followed him. He looked almost somber. Or I suppose as close to it as he would ever get. “Are you alright?”

“Is she,” I swallowed, “is she better?” He shook his head. “Aaron,” I whispered. He took my hand and kissed it. “Don’t,” I cautioned.

“If I die tomorrow,” he said softly, “I want you to know that it was my great honor to have met you, and that it will be my greatest regret to not get to build that better world of ours.”

“You’re teasing me,” I said, “and I don’t like it.” He smiled.

“I can’t help myself,” he said. “I should find Athena.”

“You’ve made up then?” I asked. He smirked.

“Something about impending doom will do that,” he said. I entered Annalise’s tent. She was looking over maps and then glanced up at me.

“You summoned me?” I asked. She looked me in the eyes now. “You’re afraid?”

“Yes,” she managed to whisper. “Of course it doesn’t matter.” She swallowed. “Martin thinks you should be kept away from the city, I disagree. What do you think?”

“I’ve told you,” I whispered. “I’m not a fighter, and I’m not,” she nodded. “I’ll do as you say, of course. But I’d be more useful here, helping with the wounded.” She swallowed. “Is that all?”

“No,” she shook her head. “Are you and Tristan,” she sighed, “it’s silly, I feel ridiculous, with everything that’s about to happen, but if you two,” she swallowed.

“We aren’t,” I said. She looked at me. “He loves you, not me.” She nodded.

“The other night, when I found you, I thought,” she sighed, “and then you said you wanted to leave.”

“I should leave,” I said. “Brayton sent those shadows with Davis for me, Lisette. He won’t stop.”

“I’ll stop him,” she said.

“But maybe not in time,” I said. She looked at me. “You Saw me at his side.”

“And you Saw Dovetail in flames,” she said. “But look at it!”

“The battle hasn’t begun yet,” I argued. “I want to help you but I can’t, if he takes me, I can’t!” She swallowed. “Let me be useful, but let me stay behind.”

“Alright,” she said. “Stay behind, help the wounded, I understand.” I nodded. She hugged me then and it took me by surprise. “I love you,” she whispered, “and I don’t want to lose you.”

“We’re Chosen, Annalise,” I said softly. “You’re the Sword of The Goddess,” our foreheads were touching, “I don’t know what that means exactly, but I know it means we’re bound.”

“I suppose,” she said quietly. “You’ll be there at the end though?”

“I won’t leave,” I said. And I knew deep in my heart that I meant it, not just that I wouldn’t leave this battle, but that I wouldn’t leave her, not ever.