Wednesday, 11 March 2015

On Black Dragons

Interlude V
Solstice accepted the ice-cream with a smile and snuggled back in the protective shoulder of her life-partner. She looks out at the world, shy and content. 
Onesti asked – Now it is your turn. You survived the black dragons - your encounter with Anthem.

Solstice protested – But this ice-cream will not last long. Get me another, just in case.

Onesti said – You have tricked me before.

Solstice smiles– I cannot tell you another’s story. I can only tell you my own.

Solstice stretches up into shoulder of her life partner. Remembering the moonlight last night. Remembering the touch of delight.

Onesti asks – Why do you bring your life partner into the world. Surely this is a cruelty?

Solstice says – Blood sister, I was young when I met him, my life partner. True, he does not understand everything and never will. But we sing and in his eyes I am content.

Onesti shrugs – And the Black Dragons?

Solstice says - We met the painter on equal terms, in human form. The painter had been running, his dragon taint obvious.

Onesti bows her head - He is unpredictable and dangerous. I am responsible for giving him the taint.

Solstice said – So you have said blood sister.

Solstice continues.

I stole ice cream from him while we stood for him to sketch. The ice cream was made with the juice of lemons and limes, with crushed mint.

He drew quickly, following the curves of our bodies and the swirl of my hair. I could see he felt the warmth of our bodies and how perfectly we matched.

After he finished, I held him gently and soaked away some of the taint. He looked at us and tried to understand. Why so casual with your affection?

I explained what it is to be a life partner. To commit to one alone and build a nest, a family, a life history. To learn to sing together and together take chances against the dark. To slowly build wealth, power and influence among the clans. But to not let that poison delight – to accept the warmth of another’s embrace and their songs without regret or condition. To dance with many, to lose myself for a moment in the shoes of another and look into new eyes with hunger and joy. But, just as I would never challenge another life partner, I would not place my own life partnership at risk.

The painter shook his head and said he did not understand. So I asked him to tell me of his life partner.

He hesitated. He told a confusing story of relationships that burnt bright and then cooled into unstainable forms. Of how, at the end of one partnership another emerged. How his life could be defined in terms of those fractures rather than slow continuity. He told how he had bought the White Album seven times, only to see it stolen away, snapped in half, burnt or shredded in the cold rage of another failure.

Onesti interrupted – What is a White Album?

I made the same enquiry. Not only do humans have personal relationships but they have created forms of imaginary relationships to pursue enterprise. The painter called on the image of the White Album to represent the defining moment of one of those intellectual endeavours. But, just as personal relationships fail, these imaginary relationships also fail, creating chaos and lost opportunity. But instead of rebuilding on rock, humans persevere in building their houses on sand.

Onesti interrupted again – And where did you leave him?

He was being hunted. Even as we spoke, dark eyes were searching for him. So I placed him in safety to recover, within the care of a guardian.

Onesti said - He is unpredictable and dangerous, but not as dangerous as the weaver.

Onesti handed her a second icecream, rich in whole milk, honey and crushed macadamia nuts – And what of Anthem?

Solstice frowned.

Peter Quinton
March 2015

This is a micro-story within Dragons Eye story (a "braided yarn") that started on an earlier G+ post. Details and story at: 

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