Thursday, May 16, 2013

Marchant, Orb's Year 913-916

Alana was still trying to live down the shame of having children out of wedlock.  It was common knowledge that she'd had an affair with Brand Taveryn and had little Eryka.  It made people look at Darius differently, and even little Caira.  People whispered that perhaps the youngest children weren't Amar's, citing his old age.

Hearing bits of the gossip infuriated her!
To make matters worse, Brand thought that he could stop by whenever he wanted to see to his child.

The first time she'd seen him in her kitchen, she had stomped her foot and glared.  "What are you doing here?" she'd raged.  He had insulted her by refusing to leave his wife for her and then thought to come whenever he wanted?!

It was unheard of!

But, Brand had merely glanced up and smiled, cooing about what a darling girl Eryka was.  Angered beyond belief, she'd insisted he leave immediately and never return. 

She'd expected him to fuss about seeing his child, but he'd shrugged and walked away, as though she were nothing to him. 
Truthfully, that was why she'd never told her pirate about the child she'd had from their liaison.  She'd worried that he would take Darius from her.  And how would she have been able to fight him?
She had never told Darius that another man other than Amar was his father, but she always wondered if he somehow sensed it.  She knew that Baji & Barika suspected, although they never treated him different.  They seemed to think that they knew more than her and could live better than her.

She scoffed.  Let them live their live and have their hopes crushed and see what decisions they make then, she thought bitterly.  Then instantly she'd felt guilt for wishing any hardship upon her own children.  She was truly an awful women, she thought.
After Brand left, she allowed herself a tiny temper tantrum to alieve the pressure building in her.

"What's wrong with Mother?" Darius asked Barika.

Barika stood by and quietly looped her arm around his shoulders and led him away.  "She'd just frustrated right now."
"Come, let's work on your homework for the day," Barika influenced.
"I already did my homework, does that mean you can tell me why she's acting so funny?" Caira asked, glancing at her mother banging around the pots and pans in the kitchen.
Barika turned towards Caira and smiled.  "No, but I will say congratulations for doing your homework with any help! You've grown so much these last few years!"

Caira smiled.  How like Barika to gently guide attention from their mother to something else.  She would make a natural mother, unlike the woman that birthed them!
And hopefully Caira herself, since she was almost the spitting image of her elder sister.  She looked up to Barika in all ways and hoped one day to be as graceful and lady-like as she was!

Orb's Year 914
Alana couldn't believe Eryka was a toddler already.  Brand had never dared step foot in her home again, but came by the shop every now & again to buy outrageous purchases.  She was sure that was his way of providing for his illegitimate daughter.

It didn't seem enough to Alana.  She had dreamed that they would run away from the shackles keeping them in Celestia and escape together. 

But, their attraction and pleasure had not been enough reason for him to give up a stable home and inheritance. 

Perhaps next time she would set her sights lower...
The Grocer had been sniffing around again and promised a good time.  Anything to break up the monotony of each day!
She sighed as she read "Pursuit of Lifelong Happiness."  Drivel, she snorted, slamming the book shut.  There was no such thing as Lifelong Happiness!  But, still... she hesitated... maybe there was something she could learn from the words...  Perhaps she was missing something....

Orb's Year 915
Baji glanced in the mirror, and gave in to the compulsion to practice a few smooth moves.  Not that there were any girls his age that he was interested in.

Or that he had enough time in the day to flirt with them...
He woke in the morning early each day with Baji to do their homework and make sure the store was stocked. 

Then after getting home from school, he was open immediately and tend to the money.  Barika would make sure the place was spotless & clean and then set to work restocking items that had been purchased. 

Together they made a great team!
Barika had told him that she'd seen the spirit of their father and that he had told her how proud he was of them. 

It had warmed his heart.
It felt like his Dad was looking out for them, no matter how far away.
"Now that Caira is older, she can begin to help us in the store," Baji said.

Caira frowned.  That didn't sound very fun.  "Well, but it's such a small shop! Perhaps it would be best if I watched the children!"

Baji turned to her and frowned.  "That is what mother does!"

Barika rolled her eyes.  "You know as well as I do that she entertains men throughout the day and ignores the children.  It would be best for the children if they had someone responsible watching them."  Barika fixed her eyes on Caira, emphasizing the need for responsibility.
Caira fluffed her hair and fixed her hair in the mirror later.  Of course she could be responsible for the rugrats!  How hard could it be! 

It certainly beat working in the stuffy shop at all hours of the evening!

Maybe this way she'd be able to meet more cute boys!
After all, Barika had met Thomas!

Orb's Year 916
Barika glanced around the shop, pleased with how well it was running.
Baji was spectacular managing the sales, the stocking and the money all at once. 
Sometimes he was so much like their father, she swore he didn't need her a bit!  Which might come to pass, she thought guiltily. 
Thomas dropped to one knee and professed his love for her and asked her to marry him.   His father had given him enough money to set up a tailor shop in Celestia, so they wouldn't have to leave her family.   She had never been happier!
They had spoken their vows and handfasted their marriage in the family home she so loved.
"Does that mean Barika is leaving us?" Eryka asked sadly.  "What will we do without her?!"  Eryka wiped a tear from her eye.
Barika laughed, "You will hardly miss me at all, I'm sure!"  she said.  "Besides, I will not be far away.  We can still see each other every day if you wish!"

Baji watched his twin sister say goodbye to the children and felt his heart breaking.  How lucky Barika was to have found her true love and to be going off to build something new.

Sometimes he worried about the pressure of keeping his father's dream alive at the expense of his own.  He had dreamed of being a famous architect, building castles and battlements for the King.  But, he supposed in his own way, he was helping to build a better Celestia by providing everyday items that the villagers needed.

He just wished he had someone to build with...

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