Thursday, February 7, 2013

September 15



Just got back from lunch.  I brought half of it back with me since some asshole bumped my table hard as he walked by, knocking my tray into my lap.  There I sat, tuna salad and protein drink all over my shirt and pants.  Then the shithead, some guy in his thirties missing both front teeth in his upper gum, smiled at me.

He said, “Sorry, slut.  But you’re used to having nastiness in your lap, ain’t ya?”

Several people nearby laughed while Mom fussed, trying to get me clean with a napkin.  Weln started forward as if to either help me or to punch the Gap-toothed Wonder, but I warned him away with a look.  I was afraid someone might jump him.  Despite his size, Weln seems to be a pretty gentle guy.  If he got into a fight and started losing, a whole bunch of the Kalquorians that hang out in the dining area keeping an eye on things would get involved.  I guarantee you, my fellow Earthers would blame it all on me.

Most of all, I was worried that Mom might realize the ‘accident’ wasn’t an accident.  I cannot take her crying again.  So I cleaned up as best I could, pointedly ignored everyone else, and sat as long as it took Mom to eat.  I’d lost my appetite.

At least it wasn’t the hot soup I’d almost ordered.  Things could be worse.  That’s what I keep telling myself anyway.

I’ve spent a lot of the day in bed.   With nothing to do and no one to talk to, what else is there?  The worst thing is how my head keeps replaying the message Dusa sent me. 

“Shalia, I am so sorry to hear what happened to Matara Eve.  I’m even more sorry that such ugly things are being said about you.  You don’t deserve any of it.  You’ve done nothing wrong.  I completely understand why you left a message saying you can’t see me and Esak anymore, but please reconsider.  We will be very careful from now on.  No one else will know when we visit you.  Just don’t cut me off like this.  I treasure the friendship we’ve built, and it hurts to think I can’t see you again.”  Maybe I was just fantasizing, but I thought I heard his voice break up a little as he spoke. 

Then Esak:  “I will not let anyone hurt you or your mother, Shalia.  Talk to us.  It will be all right.”

Do I really mean that much to them?  I know how lost and empty I feel not seeing Dusa’s smile.  I think back to the last time I saw them and my gut knots.  I alternate between laughter and tears when I remember Esak’s patient suffering as he watched Mom knit him a very non-Nobek cap.  I could see him gathering all his courage to wear it when it’s eventually finished, just to make her happy.  I know he’d do it too, even though it’s a color only a little girl would wear.  He and Dusa are so sweet.  They’ve been incredibly good to us. 

I can’t bear to erase their message.  Not when it’s the only shred of kindness I have left in this world.  I’m going to keep it, because I don’t dare allow myself to remain involved with them in any way, not when Mom’s wellbeing is a part of the equation.

It’s so unfair.

18 comments:

  1. Loved it, but I'm greedy. I find myself wishing away days so I can read more! Poor Dusa so tender hearted. Gotta love those guys!

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    1. I know, I'm greedy too. But it could be worse - only once a week.
      -Andy

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  2. Excellent! And now I have to wait for the next bit.
    *head desk*
    -Andy

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  3. Loved it. It's keeping me on pins and needles. Wonder how long it will take Shalia to figure out that nothing she does will fix this, except get some protection from some yummy Kalquorians.

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    1. I know right? And I'm dying to know if she's going to pick Dusa and Esak or Nang as that protection!

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  4. Why does no one leave this place yet? Shouldn't the residents be leaving for colonies or Kalquoria. I also thought the Kalquorians weren't supposed to be allowing this religious behavior. Any of them allowing this is completely against their character.

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    1. They are still waiting for the transports to Kalquor and other colonies to arrive. They have an entire planet to evacuate, and though most of the population perished, that is a huge job. Remember, the Kalquorians showed up to invade and stop the war, not instantly truck off the women. We are still in the early stages of the Galactic Council figuring out what in the world to do with all these soon-to-be-expatriate Earthers.

      The Kalquorians are also not about to interfere in Earth religious observances and beliefs except to keep Earthers from actually hurting others or themselves. Can you imagine the backlash if they tried to police faith?

      Shalia didn't react enough to the 'accident' to warrant Kalquorian interference. Had the actions of Mr. Jerk put Shalia in imminent danger or had she reacted with great emotion, the Kalquorian men watching over the dining hall would have put a stop to it. That's why they are there. They saw what happened and were ready to interfere should the situation escalate (hence Shalia warning Weln off with that look -- she didn't WANT escalation). Since things didn't get any worse than a lap full of food, the guards wisely allowed it to resolve itself, keeping the uneasy peace between Kalquorians and Earthers.

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  5. There has to be more earthers who sympathies with Sheila. Are the afraid to step up. Of do the majority truly side with the A-holes?

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    1. They're afraid ... of both their fellow Earthers and the Kalquorians they aren't yet completely sure they can trust. We'll meet one of those people in particular later on.

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  6. So, it's going to take around nine months for major transport shuttles to get to Earth from Kalquor...Will they start evacuating 'friendly' Earthers first? (if it seems like I'm digging to see if Shalia is going to be on Earth for the next nine months, it's b/c I totally am!)

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  7. Oh, so you think you'll get me to talk, do you?

    Actually, not all Kalquorian transports are as far away as Kalquor. Some, due to the war and regular commerce, are a bit closer. In particular, there are military transports that carried ground troops around to fight on Earther and defend Kalquorian colonies. With these options, Shalia does not have to wait nine months to leave Earth.

    The main entity in charge of taking care of surviving Earthers is not Kalquor, but the Galactic Council. For the moment, Kalquor is leading the charge when it comes to rescue since their fleet was there in Earth's neighborhood ... you know, setting off Armageddon in their bid to invade.

    Scavenger types like Tragooms and the ever profit-hungry gang from Dantovon have some ships in the vicinity as well. I imagine they were looking to profit in some fashion from the war and trailing the Kalquorian fleet in the hopes of doing so.

    Neutral entities from the Galactic Council, looking to help civilians caught in the crossfires of this conflict, have also been nearby. There are only a few of those ships present right now. Their function was to keep tabs on the war so they could render humanitarian aid if needed after the fighting stopped.

    All that to say that Kalquor is taking away only 'friendly' Earthers for now. While the fleet is feeding and caring for those who will let them do so, Kalquor is waiting for the main fleet of the Galactic Council to come and take the rest of the survivors off Earth.

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  8. I know Shalia has a few choices about where to go to live. She is slowly changing her opinion about Kalquorians. Since Eve can be "cured" of both illnesses only on Kalquor, and Shalia's priority is her mother, why wouldn't she choose Kalquor? Even in the worst case scenario, she'd stay on Kalquor for 2 years before she'd have to leave. Can't she go to one of their colonies? She's already attracted to Dramok Dusa and Nobek Esak. And the Earther snobs hate her already; why go to the same colony they are, where the religious zealots reside? Eventually, her reputation as a "Kalquorian sympathizer" will spread, making it difficult to live there. She would be better off going to going to Kalquor. Can Dusa and Esak claim a Matara without an Imdiko?

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  9. Shalia is still weighing all her options. Her biggest problem is that even though her recent petting sessions have been so exciting, she has not had good experiences with sex. She is understandably hesitant about going into a situation with three men, when she knows she'll be expected to 'give up the goods' so to speak.

    Her concern about spending the two years fending off clans who want her to join them while her mother receives treatment is that eventually she'll have to leave the Empire (no, Kalquorian colonies are not an option if she won't clan). This means she'll have to go to an Earther colony where her living on Kalquor could be discovered and held against her.

    Shalia already knows in her heart what she will have to do. She just doesn't want to face it yet. Right now, she has the luxury of putting that decision off, so that is what she's doing.

    Dusa and Esak cannot claim a Matara without an Imdiko. Furthermore, their full complement of a clan with all three men in place has to be considered an established, stable unit before they can have a female mate. Not only do they need an Imdiko, they must be together for a specific amount of time, as will be explained later in the diary.

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    1. Oh my! The guys have to have a full and established clan?! That complicates matters! I just love Dusa and Esak though! Is it explained whether or not Nang has a clan? I'm still reeling from the shock of Shalia's much enjoyed make out session with Nang! I assumed he did, but then realized him being older means nothing. There were plenty of older guys in To Clan and Conquer with out any mates. Oh man... OMG, Weln's not clanned right?! I distinctly recall him being single.

      Shalia's Diary is getting so good. I have no idea what you're going to do next! For all we know Shalia's going to be trying to sneak her and her mom on a Dantovan shuttle! I love it!

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    2. Nang's clan status will come up later. And Weln is not yet clanned.

      I'm glad you're enjoying it!

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  10. I think Shalia should try to help Dusa and Esak find an Imdiko. Whether or not she eventually clans them, she likes them and cares about them. I don't think we know enough about Nang for Shalia to think about him romantically. romantically took advantage of her! I don't think Dusa did, though. I wonder if they've been considering Weln. How much time does Shalia have before she has to make her decision? I wonder when the Kalquorian ship for those in southern GA arrives...

    Does Shalia really think of the two years she will spend on Kalquor as "fending off clans"? How sad. Emperor Clajak and Empress Jessica need to hire Cultural Advisors QUICKLY! If Earther women only knew how Kalquorian men felt and treated women! Attached is my resume...

    I AM SO HOOKED!! I WANT TO CLAN!!

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  11. I recently started reading the journal. I know i'm so behind but this entry had me tearing up! If it was between my mom n the guy i'm falling for i'd pick my mom too. But I hope the situation with Shalia will improve. I'm cheering for you Shalia! lol <3 u Tracy!

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    1. Welcome to the party! Wow, it's been a long time since I've read this. I'd completely forgotten this scene. Hold on tight...a lot of twists and turns ahead.

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