Monday, February 13, 2012

Tiny Story Time: Appoggiatura

Delighting in twinkling places...

This way and that way, too busy to stop, too busy to think.

Even after all the bloodshed, she still felt paradoxically nauseous and exhilarated after finding the troll female lying dead in the Jintha'alor ruins. Matty’s axes were not responsible, however: a Blood Elf was on her own silent quest, and sought no aid from the Alliance shaman. Her own memories of hunting trolls, ready to pounce around every wall, each stone, shook her, but now the dead troll just looked sad, like a bird that had flown into a window: dead, and surprised by it.

Guthrum Thunderfist's presence calmed Matty, as she looked at her map, hands shaking, regaining focus. "Aye, sometimes these draenei lassies are as skittish as gryphon chicks, and twice as tough to tame," he mused to himself. This one seemed tired but sure, but he saw the pallor under her smile, a waxy cloud passing over the sun. Something had shaken her. “Keep your feet on the ground,” he blessed as she flew away.

She stopped by Ravenholdt, though she had no business there. The rogues mildly threatened and cautioned her. The Lord of the manor wouldn’t speak to her, his arrogant silence of the established class.


The night was filled with soft pewter-colored stars, and she jumped on the balustrade off the balcony, feeling mischievous and irreverent. Rogues sparred in the courtyard below while their training master looked on, unimpressed. “Humans,” she thought, “so damn righteous. Take everything on like they invented it.” Not enough magic here: time to go.

Over another hill, she spied Captain Ironhill’s Ghost, damned to walk an eternity near Dun Garok. The siege engines still running, fumes and fuel spilling into the air. There was nothing she could do for these spirits. Poor Captain, she felt complete pity for him, though in life if a strange creature such as a Draenei had ever pitied him…gods would cry.
The never-ending next thing, the next treasure, moved her forward, constantly.

If she stopped, she would think.
And if she thought, she would feel.
It had been too many years.

She awoke to the sounds of haunted drums: drums called, beckoned, beseeched, but no one answered. No one came.

Those years ago, she had caught him in one moment of honesty. A simple trap, really. He rarely told the truth, but she asked in the night, between the blink of stars and when the moon turned away, and asked him if he ever meant to be hers. And in that one rare moment, he spoke the truth. “No.”

Her pragmatism took over then. She knew he would never tell her the truth again, and was free of his spell. She left.

But the reasons she had stayed in the first place made no sense: he didn’t understand her, and was angry when she wanted him to try. He found nothing adorable about her, or endearing, only a combination of sexual appeal and tenacity, and her unrelenting force to make him into something he was incapable of perceiving. He was no bride’s groom. She was not the one.

But he wasn’t either.

“Might as well give into this,” unconsciously thinking. Matty moved her hips to the beat of the drums as she washed. At Dreamer’s Rest she had found natural sleep. In her native Azuremyst, the seething, humming crystals kept the Draenei overly vigilant and charged. She envied the Night Elves’ land, their solidity and traditions. She could stay here forever, though they looked at her oddly, waving her hands, shaking down through her midsection, dancing around her tent, though the by-standing citizens of the small enclave could see her silhouette dancing in the tent’s silks. They thought she had come alone, but her dance was as if it had an audience. But she danced for herself. “Oh, the drums!” She had dug them up not too long ago, and something in her bags kept knocking them, turning on the rhythms like a hiccupping cat! She felt so silly, acting all mourning and moony for something or someone that she didn’t want. She started laughing, and then crying. The Elves became slightly alarmed at the Draenei woman’s erratic actions, but stoically, mysteriously, or just apathetically left her alone. It was their way.

The drums stopped beating: she’d have to put those somewhere safe and out of reach. When they beat, she was the only one who could hear them. That may drive her mad, for she had enough experiences of late that were all on her own. She thought it best if she returned to Dalaran to prepare for the next studies.

On the way home, she felt, well, just fine. The post produced a note from a tricky mage she knew. She heard a whisper, “I see you,” he said.

“I see you, too,” she smiled. (and I hate that song, by the way...)


  1. Today I'd set aside for ugh, taxes. But instead I'm going to catch up on my reading.

    I loved your stories as always. Poor smitten Scout Knowles.

    And oh, I'm going to have to come out from under my rock more often, I'd never heard that song.

  2. Reading>Taxes

    And I'm sure you'll agree if you do listen to that song why it really resonates with folks, and that's the age-old tale of lost loves. Maybe the old-school Mormons have it right: have multiple wives so no one gets left out! (I KID OF COURSE!)

    But - I need to share this - driving home yesterday and listening to that NPR story, I smugly thought to myself, bah, that song is awful, way too clingy and saccharine for my taste. The next thing I know, I was remembering pivotal moments in some milestone relationships where I knew it was over-over, and got all teary! For the love of....sheesh. Got a drive-through diet Dr. Pepper and all was right as rain once more. One of those pivotal moments involved a mountain bike, that subsequently got stolen in Five Points, in Denver, Colorado. Whomever stole that bike, a message: you were riding on a broken heart, thief.

    But it all worked out for the best.

    1. It's funny I listened to it and was somewhat perplexed. My daughter always stayed friends with old boyfriends and wished them well.

      I however always held on to the passion, it just changed, and in a bad way, lol!

      May frogs rain down on your abode! Lamentations of the women and all that so yeah, not a song I can relate to!

      Sorry about that mountain bike and I'll remember to try Diet Dr. Pepper for those bad moments!


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