And the new material begins! There will almost undoubtedly be some stylistic changes, considering that the original manuscript was started eight years ago and I’ve been through a bachelor’s degree and several life changes since then. Let us go forth and see what happens!
The Arms of the Ocean
The door opened and closed. Marius stood on the stoop for a moment and removed a glove before running a hand over his face. He then made his way back to the car a touch more swiftly than he might have otherwise. The small amount of Rilla’s essence that he’d taken hummed inside him, resonating like her voice did. It was strangely exhilarating in a way that few things had been since the Dive. He hadn’t taken much, just a taste, just enough to excite his senses. The craving for more was almost unbearable.
“What the hell am I doing,” he asked himself as he got back into the car. This was wrong, it was accelerating too quickly. If she had been any more forward they would be up in her bed right now. It was the sort of thing he didn’t do anymore. Not since he had been a young, reckless sailor on shore leave.
This is it, my darling readers! The last of the old material! Well, all right, there are like four paragraphs in tomorrow’s update that are technically part of the old material, but other than that it’s all new moving forward! Fingers crossed for consistent updates!
The Arms of the Ocean, cont.
Once Marius had walked away from the table, Rilla set down her fork and put her hands to her cheeks. Closing her eyes, she took a deep breath, and hoped with all she had that her every emotion was not waltzing across her face the way it felt they were. Biting her lip again, she thought about the way he had looked at her. As if he wanted to consume her. It had been thrilling, somewhat intimidating, and had sparked a flame that she could feel in her blood. He had felt dangerous in that moment, which seemed absurd, but his eyes…there had been something in his eyes. She shook her head, took another breath, and let it out slowly.
“I can’t be making this up,” she murmured, and then laughed. Sitting alone at the table talking to herself was probably not the best approach. She turned her attention back to dessert, and picked at it slowly. She was off her appetite for want of something else.
Leaning back in the chair, Marius did not disappoint, smiling back at her, then motioned for the waitress and requested the check. Thus far it had actually been a rather nice evening, and his date was evolving into a creature that merited further study. He was a little surprised by her compassion – he wasn’t sure why it was surprising, maybe just in that musicians had a bit of a reputation for egotism. Or maybe it was because he didn’t open up in front of others, and so wasn’t used to the opportunity for compassion being present. It was likely that second one.
Smirking, he chastised himself a little as he watched her walk away. He really enjoyed the way she walked. She had a pronounced swish to her hips, not so much that it looked ridiculous but enough to appeal. There was something very unhurried in her normal, unthinking walk. As if she knew she would get there, and rushing wouldn’t make her destination any closer.
“Oh, god, why am I doing this,” Rilla asked her reflection as she pinned the sides of her hair up in a manner to frame her face without getting in her face.
“Because he’s dreamy despite the mixed signals,” Karin returned with humor. “Also, the fact that I don’t think you’ve so much as deeply kissed someone in a year probably helps.”
We are fast approaching the end of the old work, and this segment had large sections that had been skipped and needed to be filled in. Soon we will be in the land of all new writing! Hopefully I can maintain this update schedule!
The Arms of the Ocean, cont.
As Marius lay down to stare at the ceiling for an indefinite amount of time, Rilla tossed in her sleep. Fitful and moaning, she seemed unable to sleep peacefully yet at the same time too tired to truly wake. When the alarm finally went off, she sat up with a jolt, panting and disoriented. Blinking and shaking her head, she fell back against her pillows again and took a deep breath, staring at her darkened ceiling and trying to focus.
“No more alcohol and sushi on weekdays,” she muttered, reaching a hand up and rubbing her face. “Though I sure hope sushi by itself is still okay.”
So we’re getting more into the parts of the story that are missing large holes of plot and transitions, and it’s up to me to fill them in! Hopefully with success! It’s almost like I’m turning May into my own aquatic NaNoWriMo! Actually, that’s not the worst idea, and I’ll have to ponder that for next year. Hmmm…
The Arms of the Ocean
“This is such a bad idea,” Marius muttered to himself as he sped home a little faster than was perhaps wise. Thankfully it was late, and in the middle of the week, so he wasn’t terribly concerned about being caught. “She’s attractive, she’s proven herself to have some depth, she seems intelligent enough. She’s entirely too young for me. Of course, most women are.”
Sighing, he shook his head and downshifted. Chris was more right than he had realized. If this girl was as important as Priska seemed to think she was, then Marius would indeed have to hurry up and figure out what it was he wanted from her. It didn’t help that he wasn’t certain just what Priska was driving at with all of this. He understood that it was strange and noteworthy that she could draw on the Song. He supposed that it could be a concern simply because he knew what that ability was capable of, and a human with that capability was outside of the laws of his kind. Yet this concept of potential, of finding this girl being a “gift” was simply not making sense to him.
So here ends Chapter 1/Act 1/whatever. Which is not to say this project is over, just that you’ll be seeing a different subheading moving forward, but it’s the same story. We’re still following Rilla and Marius as they figure out what in the hell is happening between them, and other supernatural influences insert themselves.
Lightning on the Sea, concluded
Approximately thirty feet away, through two walls, a painting, and a mirror, Rilla washed her hands and took a deep breath. The night wasn’t going badly, per se, but she had stuck her foot in it with the glove question and now didn’t really have a clue how to pull back out. From next to her, she heard Karin sigh.
“It’s not that bad,” Karin said after a minute as Rilla shut off the water. “Though honestly, and I’m not sure how to say this, but I don’t know that he’s on the market as it were. Even if the woman he came to the show with really is just a friend, he’s seemed distracted all night.”
They all finished their goodbyes, and Karin pulled Chris away as Marius and Priska made their way out of the club, following a good portion of the crowd but not all of it. It didn’t take long to get back to the lot where they had all parked, and Marius opened the door for Priska as he felt any gentleman should. Once seated, he started the car and was pulling out when he decided he’d let her ruminate for long enough.
“Well?” Marius asked.
“You were right,” Priska said with a sigh, leaning her head back against the rest. “I don’t know how it’s possible, but you are very much right. She has the Song.”
On the other side of the wall, walking down the sidewalk towards the door, Chris was being introduced to Priska.
“So have you know Marius long,” Priska asked as they dodged a drunk moving dazedly past.
Chris grinned. “Yes and no? I met him the first time while working on a Naval salvage contract. He was the expert brought in to confirm they’d found what they were looking for, and I was one of the overseers making sure the dive crews didn’t break anything. We didn’t actually start spending time together until a couple years later when I moved to Seattle.”
So, real talk, I don’t like Marilla’s stage name. It’s actually the third version of her stage name, because the first two were a little too flowery. I’m still not happy with this one. I like La Sirène as a surname, but so far we’ve gone through Lorelei, Nereid, and now Nerissa, and I am still not happy. Willing to take suggestions.
Lightning on the Sea, cont.
The rain continued through the night and well into the next day. This was unsurprising for this time of year. The combination of the weather, and the fact that the shop was closed Sundays and Mondays during the winter, helped Rilla reach the conclusion that there was nothing she should be doing other than staying at home where it was warm and tea was plentiful. When work eventually forced her to venture back out into the world, the early week and no pressing engagements meant that she stuck remaining in a warm, tea rich environment. By Wednesday the rain had subsided long enough to give way to fog, but at least promised to remain dry.
The heavy fog outside the window was matched by a heavier blanket of fragrant steam inside. Rilla lounged in the scented pink waters of the old clawfoot bath, her hair pinned up and wrapped in a kerchief. A bathtub large enough to soak in had been the primary draw to this location, aside from the price. The bathroom in this older home had never been updated other than to replace some of the leaking pipes, and it was the first time Rilla could think of where that worked in her favor. The huge, ancient tub fit her not-precisely-tiny figure just fine, with room to wiggle and stretch out. The heavy, perfumed peace was interrupted by a knocking on the door.