September 3, 2016

In Which Thetis's News Is Not So Distant

April 30, 1202

"How's she doing?" Thetis's son asked as he shut the door behind him, little more than whispered as he noticed Dora's sleeping form. Florian had given the side-eye when Severin had settled on a career in medicine, insistent that the boy simply didn't like people enough to enjoy it--not that that was a bad thing, of course, but there was only so much satisfaction a puzzle could give if part of solving it required a good bedside manner.

Thetis had disagreed from the start. The proof of it had shown its face when he'd met Rina; he may have been grouchy and socially-averse, but it wasn't for lack of caring. It may have even been for an excess of caring. Working as a physician gave him an outlet for pent-up concern that he was otherwise ill-equipped to express.

"Mmm... not much different from when you were here yesterday, unfortunately. She was awake for a while this morning, but she had to rest again."

Poor girl. The inexplicable illness was one thing, but even more troubling was her panic over her lost memories. Whenever Dora woke, those around her would take care to keep conversation to the present--or to the future, even, thanks to young Ceidrid's creative variety of (mostly) harmless amusement attempts.

But, inevitably, something would remind her that before arrival in Naroni... well, there was nothing to be reminded of.

"I wish there was more we could do. If parents' background was anything like mine or your father's, I don't know if any church would have records of them, but she needs... I don't know. A starting point, at least. Some hint as to who she is and where she came from. Do you suppose trying to trace our own lines back far enough might yield something? She does look so much like--"

"Alyssin." From the foot of the bed, Severin squinted down at her. It might have been two seconds, it might have been a whole minute; there was a fog about the room that both stretched and squeezed time, made any guessed measurement impossible.

But, however long he'd studied her, the day-wide haze broke with a sudden clear-eyed gasp. "...Mother, you don't have anywhere else you need to be today, do you?"

"No, I think Esela and Hamrick can handle anything that comes up at home." Perhaps her soft spots had grown too broad, but she didn't think she could leave Dora for long without any concrete news for anything short of an emergency. But, if that enlightened, end-tying stare toward the window meant anything, concrete news may not have been so distant a thing. "What is it? Do you know why she's sick? What she has? Why she can't remember?"

"No. Not quite." Or--as she knew innately, as the woman who raised him--not with enough certainty for him to say. Yet. "But I know someone who does."


1 comment:

Van said...

It's weird that it's September. My sincerest apologies to anyone who's now back at school. Unless you like school, but I sometimes have difficulty believing that anyone really does. XD