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.
I’m keeping my initial edits pretty light until we get to the parts where I need to add significantly more material. That said, I’m looking over some of this and going “oh, this is so bad, my sentences are so even, and they’re all long!” Somewhere Mr. Rich is shaking his head at me, and I can hear him cheerfully explaining how to convey action in a story by varying sentence length. I’m sorry, Kenneth. I’ll do better.
Lightning on the Sea, cont.
Rain can seem to form patterns on windows if you study it long enough. Living somewhere that rains so often, you typically get the chance. Downtown, in a bar just off of 1st, Marius considered the rain and the patterns he thought it made as he drank quietly and steadied himself for the task at hand.
It was perhaps a little absurd, but in his time being what he was, Marius had never become completely comfortable with feeding. Well, that wasn’t entirely true. He’d never become comfortable feeding off of strangers. The process was very intimate, and despite the attitudes of the modern age and the freeness some people indulged in, he came from a time where casual encounters were largely frowned upon. Sure, as a former sailor, Marius had his moments in the past, but he’d always felt guilty after. Whether it was his own morals or the leftover threads of cultural conditioning, he just never felt right about it. Of course, the necessity for staying alive combined with the fact that he wasn’t strong enough to take energy from the humanity around him meant at least twice a month he had to get over himself.
Fun fact! The shop that Rilla works for – Love Letters – was actually my final for my Small Business 101 class. I got a 4.0 on that project – and for that class – and if I had a clue how to put together the capital, probably would have tried to open the business.
Lightning by the Sea, cont.
A few hours later, a bit further north and to the west of I-5, Nerissa was desperately trying to ignore the war between the gulls and the pigeons that was being staged on her balcony in the hopes of acquiring a few more moments of sleep. She wasn’t succeeding.
The battle of the birds aside, the bedroom itself was quiet save for the steady breathing of the woman lying still in a bed that seemed too large for what little it held. She groaned and rolled over to stare at the gauzy canopy that obscured her view of the ceiling. The bedroom around her was a study in creating atmosphere, though it was the thrifty DIY version. Aside from the canopy draped around the bed, mirrors from import stores decorated the walls and various Moroccan style glass lamps hung from the ceiling on chains, and furniture that probably once graced a second hand store had been repainted a deep mahogany with touches of gold gilt. A great deal of work had been put into maintaining a particular look in this room, which made the very modern alarm clock all the more out of place. At 8:00 am, the seemingly anachronistic clock began to beep shrilly, and Nerissa reluctantly sat up.
The two men turned away and headed back out of the theater and into the lobby. Chris grumbled for a good deal of it, but it seemed more for show than anything else. After retrieving their coats and Marius’s hat, they waved farewell to the woman closing box office and headed back to Chris’s car.
“So am I just taking you home, then,” Chris asked as they climbed in.
And we’re back! You may notice that the sections posted are not all going to be the same length. Like, not even a little sometimes. This is in part because I switch perspectives as the story goes, and I plan on ending posts before the perspective switch. That won’t happen every time, though. These next two will both be from Marius’ perspective, because it’s a longer segment and I wanted to break it up. Look, we’ll figure it out together.
Lightning by the Sea, cont.
Outside the theater, running through the rain and bursting in the door came two men, both looking to be somewhere near thirty. The first, in leather trench beaded with water, laughed as he shook the excess rain out of his hair. The second, not laughing but still looking very much amused, removed his hat and flicked drops off the brim at his companion.
“Marius, come on, I said I was sorry,” the laughing gentleman said as he wiped the new water from his face. “How was I supposed to know the bridge would be closed?”
So then! I am not an artist, but I like the idea of MerMay and other month themes that push you to create something every day. This story is actually one I began in 2011 and abandoned, but I really liked the idea. It’s not about mermaids per se, but it is about aquatic beings, and touches on a number of similar themes. Well, eventually. In the beginning it feels more like a vampire story, and there’s a reason for that, that hopefully I won’t need to explain. Anyway! Let’s attempt this daily postings in May business.
Also! I didn’t ever have a name for this story, but I was going to group the different acts (not chapters, longer than chapters) by names of different songs involving the water. Go with me on this.
Have you ever had those moments when you’re having a conversation with someone, and then you hop onto Facebook or something and the first ad they show you pertains to that conversation? And then you start to freak out because it’s confirmation that they really are listening all the time? I had that with this Inspirobot quote. I will now proceed to be aggravatingly vague and not explain why.
This is another one of those instances where Inspirobot offered up something that, instead of making me giggle, made me pause for a moment and contemplate whether or not the AI had a point. Which always makes me a tiny bit nervous, if I’m going to be honest. Because I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’ve read enough science fiction to know that when the singularity comes, we’re probably in trouble.
So the question you’re probably asking yourself right now is, am I being boring and repetitive by reusing this title for all the Inspirobot quotes, or am I showing off my knowledge of Roman numerals? I won’t tell.
Anyway! Happy Half-Price Candy Day! Inspirobot has feelings about the February holiday season. Take it or leave it.
Happy New Year! So, this is not an Inspirobot quote (don’t worry, more are coming). I downloaded WordSwag, which is an app that you use to make quote images on Instagram. I actually downloaded it for my little gamer side project, The Cartographer’s Guild, because we have an Instagram now and should really be doing something with it. This is my first image experiment.
So, “nie mój cyrk, nie moje małpy” is a Polish saying that means “not my circus, not my monkey” which is basically saying that’s not my business, and so that’s not my problem. The saying became pretty popular recently, honestly not sure why, and it has a special place in my heart because I am half Polish. As in my mother is a first generation American. That’s not important right now.
What is important is that I have really come to embrace this saying as I’ve gotten older. And I don’t mean from a larger, social responsibility standpoint. I don’t think that just because my children are out of public school, we should stop funding public schools, or other nonsense along those lines. I understand that we are trying to have a society here, and that means promoting the greater good, which often means supporting things that don’t directly benefit me. And I am fine with that.
But on a personal level, I have been learning when to step away for my own health and well being. And so my goal for the new year is to realize when it’s not my circus, and to put the monkey down before it starts flinging poo.