Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Day Two-Eighty-Two: Life, Death, and the Aristocracy


Death… death was weird.

Libby asked me what it was like to die this morning. I knew she'd been wanting to ask, hoping that I would give her an answer on my own, but I remained staunchly silent. I've been staunchly silent about EVERYTHING that's happened so far - she doesn't know Eve offed me, The Baron's survival and betrayal is still a secret - and I guess she was getting annoyed.

Wouldn't ask me details, though. Not about what happened. She's a good partner like that. So, instead, she asked what it was like to die.

I didn't have a good answer, 'cause truth be told, I don't REMEMBER what it was like to die. There was pain… and visions of Libby 'n me in our home… me trying to tell her that Eve smiled… and then, soon, darkness. Darkness and blue fire.

Then I was in a cave. And I didn't wanna wake up. So I didn't. Once I figured out Eve's message to me, I was here. That was my experience with death.

Did something else happen? Probably. It's been weeks since I died. Surely the afterlife is more than just a brief flash of black before you're brought back, because not everyone GETS brought back. My uncle Orlando died a few years back, 'n I haven't gotten any letters from mom saying he shambled onto the farm and asked for key lime pie.

(I guess he wouldn't, though. Key lime pie killed Uncle Lando. Let that be a lesson, diary - even squishy food needs to be chewed.)

And there are ghosts… and zombies… and other spiritual doo-dads… I dunno. Death is weird, like I said. I have no insights on the topic, so don't ask me, diary. I know you won't, 'cause you're an inanimate book thing (and thus don't have to WORRY about this dying crap), and that's what I like about you. Objects don't judge. They just are.

In short: no good answer for Libby on the nature of life after death. I made something up instead. "It smells like rotten eggs, and there's a dude in a white suit. He serves you tea and crumpets. I didn't get to finish my crumpet, 'cause you, like, brought me back to life. Jerk." And she punched me.

Yep. That's… that’s all that happened today.


Sigh. I can't hide my life from you, diary. You stare into my soul. You judge. I know I just said you don't, but I rescind that paragraph. You totally do. I see it in your cover.

I said yesterday that Libby's been keeping people away from me since I woke up. Edmund's been helping, a little bit, though he's more hesitant - I heard him arguing with Libby that I'd be "exposed to them eventually, / even if thou persisteth in wenchery." That earned him a BIG smack, and I really felt for the guy - I don't know that many other words rhyme with 'eventually'.

I fretted over what they meant by their whispered conversation. I fretted so much that I couldn't ask, and just as I spared Libby painful details of my death, she spared me details of… of… the mob.

I found out 'round lunch today. Libby's hefting a watermelon in her tummy these days, and though she's not nearly as temperamental as when she had Eve - hell, I'd say she's downright peaceful by comparison - she still has some odd cravings. Today it was a fragrant combination of pickles and pudding. (Women.) The in-house staff refused to make it for her, and she ordered herself escorted out of our string of apartments so she could complain in person.

I couldn't go with her. I've been commanded to stay inside the apartment for now. Edmund did the honours, a proud shiner circling his eye, and I was left by myself.

For a few minutes.

I was doodling on a scrap of paper when I heard a tap at the door of the opposite apartment. They're all connected, and though we can't freely wander the hallways, we can go from room to room with impunity. Bigger than my house, and better furnished, so I don't mind the arrangement that much… save for the fact that the other two apartments are populated by a bunch of smelly nobles. (Gods, they complain about not having access to baths ALL DAMNED DAY. I can hear them through the walls.)

Libby warned me not to open the door if I heard anything. She's been silently watching over it since I woke up, mindful to keep intruders out. She was gone then, though, and I, well, I was bored! Damn bored. I don't know how this lot has remained cooped up in here for several weeks without going batty. Though, uh, the 'batty' part might be a possibility, as you'll see in a sec.

I tiptoed up to the door and listened. There was another faint knock. Mindful of my wife's presence SOMEWHERE in the goblin castle, I whispered "Who's there?" through the door.

The person on the other side breathed hard. Then, in an equally-cautious voice, Harold whispered "Is that you, Dragomir? Is she gone?"

I chuckled and nodded. "Yeah, she's gone."

Those three words set off an explosion of excitement. I'd failed to notice that Harold's breathing was accompanied by the muffled movement of a dozen nobles, and as soon as I said 'gone' Harold screamed "NOW'S OUR CHANCE!" and fucking PLOWED through the door, knocking me across the room. The other nobles followed him, and in seconds they'd surrounded me and pulled me to my feet.

They screamed at me. Jubilantly. The men clapped my shoulders so hard that I've been spitting up phlegm all evening, and the women ripped the sleeves right off my shirt. One portly woman fondled my biceps for a few seconds, 'til I elbowed her away. It was fucking bizarre, diary, and the whole time I figured they were gonna eat me.

They didn't eat me. This wasn't a cannibal raid. They thanked me. Over and over and over, they thanked me. And… they kept yelling… something… about 'saviour'… and 'leading'… and 'leadership'… and… stuff… things so alien to me… I will have nightmares tonight of their delighted screams, I just know it.

Libby came back after a few minutes of this confused tussle. Belly or no, she ripped into the nobles and punched 'em out of the room, screaming at them for their audacity. Seriously, that's what she said. When did she get such a wide vocabulary? Go fig. The rest of the day was peaceful after that, though Libby remained grumpy because she had no pickled pudding.

But she will tomorrow. Oh yes. Edmund assured me that the goblin chefs won't her ignore her weird requests a second time.

We played a new board game Libby concocted for a few hours after that, had dinner, and went to bed early, Libby and I taking the bed while Edmund curled up on a tiny couch in the corner. (He's a travelling bard. He's slept on rocks before. He doesn't care where he lays down.) I can't sleep, though, 'cause things keep running through my head.

Monsters. Daughters. Rumbling doors made of light. A bald man with a shredded face. And… nobles… nobles happy to see me… nobles calling me their saviour… what… what the hell is tha

Dragomir's going to bed now. My baby and I are tired of his stupid candle. And that incessant pen scratching. When we get a new house, we're getting separate beds - in separate rooms.


nooooooooo, my feet get cold when I'm in bed alone.


Dragomir the Chastised-But-Sneaky-Enough-To-Retrieve-His-Diary-From-Under-The-Bed

1 comment:

  1. Every time I see that busted up hat, it breaks my black heart.