July 16, 2015

In Which Xeta Has a Home

February 27, 1193

Xeta had never been afraid of her father in law, exactly, but there was something intimidating about just how... himself he was. She'd always found Lord Severin to be on some different level of existence than most men, as if he were more of an idea, or a monument, than an actual human being. He wouldn't have been flattered to hear that, but it was true nonetheless. He'd never quite felt real to her, and knowing that, she usually made a point not to be alone with him.

But she'd been putting off talking to him for nearly two months now. Her stepfather had been gone for half that time, and they'd buried him and mourned him and they were expected to move on with their lives. For Xeta's part, she'd been inspired by Ovrean's steady ease even in his final hours, determined to be happy regardless of life or death or any more trivial things mankind flung about. She'd lived in the shadows long enough.

"So... what do you think?"

"I think it's your life, and it's not my right to stop you from living it as you see fit." Lord Severin's eyes glinted, as if he'd thought it too obvious an answer to even merit a question. Xeta fought to keep from swallowing. She hadn't told him that she and Camaline were lovers--but why did she get the sense that he knew? "I realize that life here has been difficult for you since Jadin passed. I'd imagine it's been the same for Camaline at Tetran. If the two of you would be happier living elsewhere, I understand entirely."

"Thank you." She pinched the fabric of her gown beneath her fingers. It was an old dress, a timeless favorite of hers, but the comfort in the color blue had died with Jadin. Perhaps it was time for a change in wardrobe as well. Her blue gowns would mean more for her daughters, when they grew. "But what are your thoughts about where my children should go?"

"Well, we know we won't have to worry about Lyssa. She can stay where she likes in the short time between her graduation and her wedding. Alina, I believe, is still young enough that she ought to be with her mother, for all it seems she needs a new set of dresses every other week these days."

Xeta let herself giggle. They did grow quickly at that age. "All right."

"It would be easier for Dalston to remain here, as my heir. But, ultimately, I believe that he and Wolf and Celina should make that decision for themselves."

Xeta nodded. Dalston, she knew, would feel duty-bound to stay at Veldora. Wolf too would probably stay, a simple country cottage insufficient to the demands of his endless energy. Celina, she wasn't quite sure about; a quiet cottage would suit her better than the hustle and bustle of the keep, but she'd never been one for change.

"Though, they would of course be welcome to come and go as they please, between here and your new home."

"Yes. Camaline and Octavius have a similar understanding with Prior."

"Good. And, of course, you will always have a home here if you need one." Her father-in-law dropped his arms to his sides and smiled. On Jadin, that smile had been a friendly, loving beam focused on her and her alone; with his father, it didn't feel that he was so much smiling at Xeta as he was at the prospect of a better world ahead. Not that that was any horrible reason to grin, but it would have been nice to be more than just a detail in the grandiose picture of his mind.

Then again... she had Camaline for that now. And she wouldn't trade Camaline for anyone's special favor. And she didn't think she'd ever need another home again.

All the same, it had been good of him to offer. "Thank you."

NEXT CHAPTER:

7 comments:

Van said...

Yay. Friday tomorrow.

Ann said...

"Xeta had never been afraid of her father in law, exactly, but there was something intimidating about just how... himself he was. She'd always found Lord Severin to be on some different level of existence than most men, as if he were more of an idea, or a monument, than an actual human being."

That! Just... that.
I've never really identified with Xeta, but this is almost exactly what I've been thinking. I guess we're more similar than I realized, she and I.

It's good to hear that she's taking Camaline up on her offer! I'm glad that they'll have each other, not just in their minds and hearts, but in their home as well. I've had my fill of characters that didn't get that, for one reason or another, lately. It's good to see, to be reminded that it doesn't have to be that way.

Van said...

I doubt Xeta's the only one in Naroni of that opinion when it comes to Severin. Most of his own generation love him or hate him, but I think many of Xeta's age aren't quite sure what to do with him; they like what he wants to do, but he just seems kind of surreal.

Happy things for Xeta and Camaline on the horizon! And yeah, I know what you mean. It seems that a lot of people these days will give good characters shitty endings just for the sake of being "edgy" and "realistic". Frankly, I'm of the opinion that there's enough gloom in the real world and I don't want an overabundance of it in my fiction either.

mimusofbellingar said...

Strange how the view on a character can change once he becomes old enough. xD
But, holy hell, Severin's 61 already? Where did the time go?

Van said...

Indeed. XD

Yeah, Severin is sixty-one, or will be this year. :S And looking damn good for sixty-one, as Sims tend to do.

Ekho said...

Let's see if this works... I'm on my iPhone and last time I commented on here with it, it didn't go through!
Sorry I've been distant, I'm reading here and there for the time being. So Xeta and Camaline are taking it to the next level, so exciting! I can't even imagine how Xeta is feeling, I mean, I think (and she probably thinks it too) that Jadin would want her to be happy, he'd probably even get a kick out them together! Either way, Severin will support Xeta, especially if moving in together doesn't work out.

Van said...

No worries! Life happens, after all.

That probably sums up how Xeta's feeling. It's been long enough that she doesn't feel guilty about moving on, but she does still think about Jadin often. Wherever he is, I'm sure he's happy for her.