by Kama » Tue Jul 09, 2013 3:21 pm
Golden Mulgore. At high summer the name was certainly becoming true, as the well watered green grasses sighed in the hot winds, gave up youth, and moved on to a graceful golden age. The soft sighs of spring became louder whispers, and the gold grass moved more sharply and whispered more loudly that just a few months before. Anxious perhaps, and already whispering of winter and a long sleep in the dark.
Above the prairie the air was cooler, but almost as dry. It blew more softly though, and the breeze hardly swayed the soft chamois sides of a hut that clung to the side of a mesa. A garden lay next to the hut but it did not thrive. An orcess worked the garden, alone. She did not thrive either.
Kama shook her head at the state of the garden and pulled dried leaves off here and there, and lifted the drooping heads of some of late blooms. She brushed the petals with her thumb. They were loose but did not fall. Nothing had been lost. All it needed was nurture and patience. A pain grew in Kama's chest, and rose to tighten her throat, and make her eyes water and sting. She was patient. She was nurturing. But neither the garden nor the hut were her responsibility anymore, and she would be leaving today. Patience and nurture would have to come from someone else. The owners had been notified, and eventually strangers would move in. Kama hoped that they would know as much joy as she and her mate had known here. Such joy was a blessing. All gone, now - for Kama anyway, and her mate, who had vanished without a word. Without trace. Kama's mate had been too powerful. Too respected. Too successful. Success bred envy, and envy bred violence, and violence bred desolation. Desolation created void.
She worked the garden anyway.
Kama strewed the dead leaves along the soil that looked poorest, and worked the dry soil loose, the leaves in. Where ground had begun to set like stone she crushed the clods with her strong hands to make it softer and more accepting. It needed water too. Drops appeared, turning the dry soil dark in spots. She brushed her face against her sleeve. The garden needed moisture, yes. But it did not need salt. She brought water in leather buckets, and poured it out between the plants, unconsciously calling for a blessing of life and renewal, and did this several times over.
Then she was done. It was time to leave.
She brushed out the slight bit of dirt and leaves on her green Echo Isles sari, and uncoiled her long white braid. From the last bucket she dipped fresh water to wash her face, to make it pure and free of salt and dust. She would not let the ancestors see her face dirty. She rinsed her hands and arms as well and was refreshed and calmed. With the last of the water, she put out her small hearth fire for the last time. One thing left before she could go, although she almost felt guilty doing it.
Kama went to the center of the hut, and untied a dried bouquet of flowers that hung from the center pole. The first gift from her mate, she had never thrown it out, instead hanging it to dry. It was a talisman of joy and good fortune and life without equal. She had almost left it for whoever came to the hut next, but it was hers, given by her mate, and she would keep it as long as she lived.
It was good to be clean. To breathe deep, stand straight and be dressed in beauty, and to hold a token of love in one's hand. It was a good day.
Kama stepped out of the hut for the last time. She did not look back. The nameless gold wyvern who bore her to and fro looked at Kama with dull puzzlement, not able to understand the mood or the lightness of today's burden. Wyvern listened while Orcess crooned some soft and soothing sounds, and loosely tied a bundle of dry grass and flowers to the saddle horn. Wyvern felt the sudden weight on her back as her Orcess mounted, tugged reins, and lightly drummed her bare heels against Wyvern's ribs. Wyvern leaped and flapped slow and strong beats with her wings, and together they rose into the air. The crooning sounds continued, and soothed them both.
Kama rejoiced in the lightness of flight, circling a couple of times and feeling the wind cooling and drying her face. She drew off a distance from the hut, but not too far. Height was what she was after. The air grew cooler and thinner as the height increased, until finally Wyvern was choking and laboring to beat at the thin cold air, and Kama too gasped to breathe. They were so high she could see a curve to the land, like a great ball with a pure mist of air close around it. Cold fingers shook to unknot the thong around the bouquet, and to tie off reins to the saddle horn. "Go! And thank you! Another will tend to you now... Go back to the den, beauty. A better Orc will take you and give you a name. You deserve one. Now, GO!"
Wyvern looked back, uneasy and distressed. The mood of Orcess confused her and made her mane stand on end. The noises seemed equally made of exasperation and affection. Wyvern was confused and unhappy. Orcess had lifted one leg over the saddle horns, and sat Wyvern as if her back was a bench. In bewildered shock, Wyvern watched Orcess-Long-White-Mane steel herself and shove away from the saddle, launching herself into the cold nothing around them, clutching the bundle of grasses and not trying to flap at all, not even once. Orcess fell away, and Wyvern watched until she grew smaller and smaller, and disappeared. Wyvern flapped. Hovering. Not sure what to do. Eventually, Wyvern turned and began a long glide towards Durotar. Hungry now. Sad. Why? Why did Long-White-Mane leave?
As Kama slid from the saddle, she thrust back with both her hands and the soles of her bare feet, shoving herself out into space. She tried to point herself as though she were diving into water, but she yielded to the urge to splay her arms and legs apart, almost like an 'X' rune as she flew through the air, gliding like a kite it seemed. Kama expected to feel fear. Instead she felt free, like a soul flying home.
A vision. Many thousands of silver snowflakes in a black winter night. Each snowflake a star, and around the stars, worlds. One of the worlds was called Azeroth. It was rugged and torn, yet beautiful in its way. A shimmering iridescent skin of Air element shone around it, and beneath that skin, a ball of earth, and fire, and water. Continents. Seas. Mountains. Rivers. Peoples. Upon the elemental ball tribes hated and killed... and made love. Killing here. Making life there. Love. Two lovers. Two mates. Two different peoples. Impossible. Impossibly beautiful. All of it was terrible. All of it was glorious.
Kama could see Mulgore now, growing larger as it rushed towards her while she stood in space. Golden Mulgore, so warm and dear. Forests became trees. Ridges became boulders. It was all so clear. The chill air was driven away behind her as Mulgore drew towards her in love. She was warm again, and her long braid whipped behind her like a banner. The bouquet tugged and bent, and dry leaves and petals tore away from it, drifting behind her. More and more they tore away as Mulgore rushed towards her, faster and faster. From earth she came, and to earth she would return. Flowers. She had always loved them. Her blood would become sap and her waters nectar. Her flesh - roots and stems and leaves and petals. From her bones - seeds, and from the seeds, new life again.
She could see everything now. Fields. Flowers in the fields. Bees in the flowers. Opalescent sheen on bees' wings.
Mulgore was very close to her now. Almost as close as a lover. She missed her mate.
Peacebloom! Of all things... Peacebloom. A patch of it lay before her, coming closer now. Coming closer very quickly, their white blooms nodded greetings, their green leaves reached towards her in welcome. In a moment the peacebloom would reach out to receive her into their embrace, in just a blink.
In just a blink.
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Kama tried to open her eyes and could not. At first, she thought she was blind. She was not. Her eyelids were gummed shut. She had been crying in her sleep again. Clumsily she rubbed them open, and smacked her mouth open and shut. Her breath was foul, and the stink was her own sweat, old and sour.
Kama groped to her side for water, and knocked over the bottle of narcotic wine that her clanmate had given her. To ease her sleep and make her happy, she had said. Instead it gave her headaches and roiled her stomach. It gave her sick dreams, that tantalized and tortured at the same time. With a curse - not like her at all - Kama seized the bottle and flung it at the wall where it crashed and shattered. Shakily, she picked up the water carafe and drank the flat and stale water straight from it, grateful for its modest refreshment.
Sharp banging on the door was followed by a slam as an elf maid threw the door to her room open. She scowled at the disheveled orcess and the mess of glass and sticky wine equally. "We have allowed you to stay this long because of your.... friend's reputation. Your friend is gone now. The deposit on the room is more than exhausted, and this, this... " She sneered, loathing in her voice "orc's nest... needs airing and disinfecting. Get dressed, get packed, and get out!"
The elf glared. Kama looked back at her, expressionless.
"I will pay what is owed. I will find some ravine with Quillboar, or a clutch of tents among the Kolkar, where there is more welcome and better manners. And service."
The elf's eye's narrowed in gleaming malice. "Good! Orcs and elves do not belong together. The thought is disgusting. Among other disgusting things you have brought into our house. Be gone. Before noon." She smirked. "It is after eleven now."
Kama shrugged out of sweaty blankets. She stood and stretched, bare as an egg. The elf looked at her in horror and slammed the door.
Kama gathered her thoughts along with her things. "Beloved... You said that all left you, one by one, each and every one as the years rolled by. I will not. I will be here. I am the one who stays. As long as it takes, as long as I live. I am strong enough to do this."
Dressed, staff and sword in her shaky grip, Kamagosha of the Flower Pickers - despised among orcs, an orc - despised among other races, strode out of the room and the inn, her back straight and her face high and proud. There was a garden in Mulgore that needed attention, and a vigil to be kept in a hide hut. Spring water, fruit, prayer and patience. Those were what was needed, and Kama was the Orcess to do exactly those things.
"We will meet again my mate. we will find each other, no matter how far, or how long it takes."