Friday, October 16, 2015

Zahari, Romana Village
Maarteen sits in the shade of one of the permanent buildings of the village. He watches his people move about their daily lives as his needle pushes through the fabric in his lap, adding another stitch to the yoke of the small tunic. he holds it up, examining the piece for any pulled or tight stitches. Movement, different from the graceful moves of his people, attracts his attention.

The Seer watches as the couple crosses the cobblestone path. A small smile tugs at the corners of his lips. The *Gadji, the male witch no longer hides the scarred side of his face. Perhaps it was the presence of others men who wear their scars proudly, or perhaps it was the fact that here no one stares in horror. Watching them knock on his uncle's door, Maarteen gathers his things and stands. The woman tosses her hair and the Gypsy closes his eyes for a moment, thinking of another. The last time he had seen her she was covered in glittering scales, a beautiful hybrid of shapeshifter and the Huntress he had heard stories about for as long as he could remember.

A gentle hand rests on his arm. An equally gentle voice asks, "You miss her so much?"

His smile deepens and he looks at the woman standing beside him. "You move like moonlight across the sands. Silent and beautiful. Sight becomes you Sarah. Si." He sighs, raising the woman's hand to his lips. "I miss her. Is so obvious?"

Sarah pats his cheek. "Only to one who misses our Nadji as well. She is no longer Outcast. Speaking her name will not damn you in the eyes of the Elders." She nods to the couple now entering Bahktian Ghandari ne Romanavich's home. "You can ask them about her." She purses her lips. "Or, you can call her again. I know just how much you love that cell phone Geo made you get."

The Seer shudders. "I'll talk to them. Goddess knows I'll get brain cancer from that blessed thing yet.." He mutters under his breath as he walks away, knowing full well the former "Blind Woman" could hear every word.

The door opens before Maarteen raises a hand to tap. His uncle motions him to take a seat across the trestle table from the Human Witches. "Maarteen! Welcome Seer. You are just in time to share a meal with your favorite Uncle and our Visitors!"

The younger Romanavich knows that tone. Uncle Bakhtian wanted his view on the Humans, and he was sure he wouldn't be the only one to be "Just in time" either.

Bakhtian opens the door at the next tap and the twins, Geo and Niko enter, laden with food. Sarah follows, directing them where to set the food and shooes them to sit beside Maarteen. The younger man slides down the bench, only to be urged to move back to his original spot at the end of the bench. he leans close to Geo as the man settles beside him. The Humans are distracted, watching as other Clan members join the group.

"Why do you not take your place at Bakhti's right hand?"

The Warrior returns the soft spoken words, "Because you are Cooza to Josephito. Which makes you their link to the Clan. And, as Seer, you will be able to tell if they try to bespell with words and lies."
Sarah places a platter of meat in the center of the table in front of them. "Enow. Tis for Bakhtian to turn meal into meeting, and we all know he will want to eat first. Shush mi Hermano."

Geo captures her hand and kisses the palm. "Where is our Angelique? Does she wish to eat with her Papa'?"

"Our little one is with the other children. You will spoil her when noon meal is over and no sooner." 

Geo kisses his wife's arm and purrs softly. She laughs and pulls away to put more platters on the table. Niko snickers. Geo throws an arm over his brother's shoulders, saying loudly, "Women. They are the gift of Life, and the Burr that keeps one from getting completely comfortable."

Sarah snorts and turns to Bakhtian. "So Uncle, Is that true? Are women both a Gift and a Burr? Or is it that men do not know the value of a good woman until she has removed a few patches of hide from both Man and Beast?"

Bakhtian laughs. "Tell me Traeger of Exton, Is our Josephito still a Man such as these, or has your daughter tamed his Beast?"


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