Archive | May 16, 2017

The Hidden Mall Part II

Part I
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Abigail reached out her hand without thinking. “What – oh.” It was an amulet, bronze-like in color, the script swirling around it looking similar to that on the awning.

“What is it?” Liv crowded in close. “What – hunh. What is it?” she repeated.

“I’m not sure,” Abigail admitted.

“It is,” the old woman interjected, “a key and a shield, a sword and a lock. It will do what you need it to. And for you two, it is free. Now, should you want something else, do come in and look around.”

Oh, a freebie. Abigail slid the amulet on its cord around her neck and stepped into the old woman’s shop.

Inside seemed like a tent more than a shop, with blankets layering the walls until you couldn’t see the shape of the room it was in, shelves stacked here and there and hangers dangling from ropes criss-crossing the ceiling. The skirts and dresses hanging from the hangers were the prettiest things Abigail had ever seen.

Liv, on the other hand, seemed drawn to the cases of jewelry and strange things arranged in a back corner. Abigail found her digging in her pocket. “I’m down to five dollars,” she moaned. “I never should have gotten that stupid necklace from Spencer’s.”

“I will trade,” the old woman suggested. “The ‘stupid necklace’ for this piece you want.”

The piece looked like scrimshaw, a twist of bone carved with an elaborate pattern.

“Is that even legal to own?” Abigail wondered.

The old woman smiled. “The animal it comes from is not endangered. A trade? The piece you regret for this piece? It will look lovely with that blue dress in your bag.”

Liv looked down at the piece, sighed, and nodded. “A trade, thank you. That’s very nice of you.”

“I deal in trades,” the woman told her, “and regrets. Thank you for your custom, young ladies.”
Without seeming as if they were leaving, they were outside her shop again.


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Family Ties – a Drabble of Cynara

See Also Plans
Let’s see, Math.
Cya starts year 6, 2000 AD
Yoshi starts Year 24, 2018 AD
The White Stag grandson starts… year 41? We’ll say 41, 2035
The next one is year 60, great-grandson, 2056
So call this 2064.

There were two people at Iasthai’s front door: a woman with a red streak through chocolate-brown hair and a very skinny man with hair so blonde it was nearly white. They weren’t part of the neighborhood, that much Iasthai knew; it was a small enough, isolated enough village that she knew all her neighbors — and they were clean and well-dressed like Addergoole people, but they weren’t anyone Iasthai recognized from there either.

The woman looked familiar, but Iasthai couldn’t quite place where or why.

“Iasthai?” She asked like it was a formality.

“That’s me,” she agreed carefully.

“I’m Cya Dayton, called Doomsday, and this is Charno, called Speedforce.”

“Ah? I see?” Oh… Oh! She took a step backwards.

“I swear to you, I come here meaning no harm to you or yours.”

Iasthai relaxed slowly. “How can I help you?”

“I’m hoping we can help each other.” She didn’t ask to come in; Iasthai appreciated it.

“How’s that?” she asked, carefully. One didn’t want to offend Red Doomsday.

“I like to keep track of my kin, to help them out. Unfortunately for that urge, my line tends towards boys.”

Iasthai glanced unwillingly to the back of her cottage, where her sons were playing. “…And?”

“And I’m willing to offer you and your household a home in Cloverleaf, five years’ living expenses, and pre-Addergoole education for all of your children if you will agree to allow me visitation with my grand— hrrm… great-great-grandson,” she murmured that part even quieter than the rest of her speech.

“You, not his father?”

“His deals are his own.”

“He — he said you suggested me.” She found her shoulders tightening.

“Ah, well, it’s harder and harder to find those that aren’t related to us or to Boom as a whole, the more generations go to Addergoole.”

“So you could find him for me?”

The woman smiled slowly. “As long as you agreed that you meant him no permanent harm and would Keep him no more than, say… four years.”

“You’d agree to that?” What kind of grandmother was she?

“My grands make their own mistakes. Besides, it might allow him to know his sons, and that would do him good.”

“Sons?” Iasthai asked, despite herself.

The woman’s smile grew to something sharp and amused. “I already negotiated with his first-year Keeper.”

Iasthai looked back at her tiny cottage. She took a breath. It wasn’t a great place, but they’d accepted her with no questions and liked her medical ability. “I’ll do it. WIth those caveats. Come back in… a week, if you can, and we’ll be ready to go.”

“I’ll see you in a week. Thank you, Iasthai.”

A house, a stipend, and her first-year Keeper tracked down for her. And Red Doomsday acted like Iasthai was doing her a favor. “You’re quite welcome, sa’Doomsday.”

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