December 1, 2014

In Which Camaline Holds the Moon

April 6, 1188

Today, as Camaline figured, was Day Three. Jadin had died on Day One. Day Two had been a private day of mourning for the family, the day everyone else received the message and shelved their plans for the day after. Day Three--today--had been the funeral.

Over the three days, time had distorted. Camaline woke as if to the same day as the last, went to bed as if a week had passed, a dark déjà vu lurking in every moment, as if the three days cycled infinitely until she finally got them right.

But she never would.

"I just... I can't believe it!" Xeta brushed away a stream of tears, for all it would only be a minute before another took its place. "I didn't think he'd actually d-die, Camaline! But he d-did! He did!"

Camaline said nothing. The way Xeta had been these past months, barely holding herself together, some part of her had surely known. It was not the time to be pointing that out. "I'm sorry."

"He was much too young! Sparron too. Why do good people die young?"

"I'm sure every decent person on earth asks the same question." Lord knew she had when Sparron had died. And meanwhile--wicked of a thought it was--her ass of a brother still lived to torture poor Jeda another day. "Every time."

"My--my children. They're too young to be without a father!" As Xeta herself had been when her father had died. Hell--Camaline too, for all she'd been a woman grown. "How will they fare?"

You fared well enough. Somehow. "Jadin's still watching them--I'm sure of it." She wasn't.

But for all it was a feat like holding the moon, seemed the right thing to say. "And you."



Van said...

Review week. Then exam week.

Then break. :)

Winter said...

Camaline is still Camaline, but she's grown so much in recent years. She did as good as anyone could have comforting Xeta here. Nothing anyone says is going to make Xeta feel any better until she's ready. And Camaline is right, the kids will manage like Xeta did and like Prior will. Having Jadin would obviously have been better, but they'll make it. They have good people around them.

I share Camaline's wicked thought, too.

Van said...

She really has, hasn't she? The only person who might have done a better job comforting Xeta is Celina (and I'm sure she did before this; she's probably with her grandchildren now). Xeta will heal when she heals, and Camaline's sensitive of the fact that it won't be sooner.

The kids will manage, eventually. Lyssa, at least, has a busy few years ahead of her, being an older teenager in a kingdom with a university, so she'll be sufficiently distracted. Little Celina will probably suffer the most, given her age.

Rest assured that Ietrin gets to live exactly as long as I need him alive, and not a minute longer. ;)