Thursday, May 8, 2008

Pass the Plot #1, Scene 4

Rhea-Anne struggled more sharply. While she hadn't considered it before, the idea of her actually being a sacrificial lamb to repair the errors of the past suddenly seemed like a logical conclusion. Grammy had bandied those types of terms around, but then again, she had also been Pentecostal, and Rhea-Anne had long ago learned to ignore some things that Grammy said. All of a sudden, she strongly regretted that.

One of the other figures reached out and stopped the figure with the silver spike from going closer. "Something is wrong, Miranda. This is not the right one."

Lucas was suddenly at the center of the rest of the figures' attention. "She had the locket. She had the passphrase. She is the one." He made a motion with his hands as if he was flicking water away.

Miranda slid the silver spike back into her hair. She came closer and at a wave of her hands, the water weeds parted, freeing Rhea-Anne. Miranda reached out and helped her to sit up. "Child, how did you get the locket."

"My grammy gave it to me." Rhea-Anne was trapped in the figure's gaze. Its eyes were hypnotic pools of light green.

"Who is this person?"

"Nettie Broadly." It was all Rhea-Anne could do to keep herself from bursting into tears. This was not at all what she had expected.

"Daughter of Edwina Small, daughter of Margene Whidlock?"

Rhea-Anne nodded.

"You are the right one, my child."

"Miranda, this one has no idea what she is doing." It was the figure who had prevented Miranda from doing whatever she had planned to do with that spike.

"Ignorance is no excuse. The debt must be re-paid. That is the law. Without the payment, we war."

The words were said simply, but suddenly Rhea-Anne knew that if there was war, she would be on the loosing side. She felt very small, very young, and very cold.

"If this one does not understand what she is doing, how can she repay the debt?"

Miranda gave her full attention back to Rhea-Anne. "Did your grammy," she paused around the word as if she wasn't quite familiar with it, "explain the debt?"

All Rhea-Anne could remember was her grammy's insistence that in the 40th year, and at the first full moon, she was supposed to be in the swamp, meet someone, and then... and then... Grammy had given her the words to say, and the locket to wear. It was important that she do this but... If she didn't do as she was instructed, bad things would happen, she knew that, but... Now that she was concentrating, Grammy had never actually explained the how's and the whyfore's. Their conversations had been cloaked in storybook terms, to hide it from Rhea-Anne's mother, who according to Grammy, didn't take real things seriously, and that partially explained the lack. But even when they had had their private chats... Rhea-Anne understood now that she had been used. By the one person who she would never, ever, have believed would do this.

"You have a choice. The debt can only be repaid by someone, knowingly. You, it is plain to see, do not know anything." The brusque words were softened by Miranda's tone.

"Will you explain it to me?" Rhea-Anne still believed her grammy enough to be worried about what would happen if she couldn't hold her end of the deal, and the words about war didn't help.

"We will do that. But you must agree to be bound by our rules until the explaining is done."

1 comment:

Gerri said...

This is very interesting. I had to go back and read from the beginning!