Berra — Tears In The Dark
1627, Fire Season, Disorder Week
Fire Season, Disorder Week, Around Clayday, riding away from the Dragonewt City [[[s02:session-42|Session 42]]]
Night. Berra’s sleeping has been bad, and broken, and in a way rather unlike her she has been tossing and turning, whimpering in nightmares. Now, it might be worse. She is awake, her breathing too slow and steady except when there are tiny breaks in the forced calm.
“Are you awake, little cousin?” Xenofos is close enough for sound to carry in low spoken, not whispered tone. But over a spear1Edited from pear length, and we are both glad of it. length away, where he was sleeping.
There is a tiny sound from under the hide, nothing more. Maybe it is a yes. Too short to be a go-away, and she would not say no.
“You sound troubled?” Scribe looks around the camp, wrapped into his riding cloak.
A tiny sniff. Maybe she curled up smaller in there.
Xenofos walks to her sleeping place, places his scabbarded rapier on ground beside her sleeping fur and sits down on the ground on the sword’s other side.
It takes a while, but there is a little movement underneath, and Berra lifts the very edge of her hide. From underneath, she must be peeking out.
He sits with his hands around his knees, looking at embers of the campfire.
Berra’s hand creeps out, and slowly she grasps the sword.
He looks at her but makes no other move.
She pulls the sword in with her. From the sound of it, and the way the hide moves, it is being arranged above her head, where maybe there are others. That sounded like the rub of metal on metal.
“What are you doing with my sword, Berra?” he asks quietly.
No answer, but now her hand comes out again, at least enough that she can hold up the hide to see.
He looks at her. Or the shadows under the hide.
The hide moves a bit, rolling towards him. She stays hidden.
“I woke up to some noise. I thought it sounded like you had a nightmare?” his voice is calm, soothing.
Her arm snakes out now, trying to capture his leg, although there is no venom in the speed.
He is a bit slow to react and fails to avoid the capture, although he makes her own.
Xenofos grips her hand at the elbow. “Berra. Wake up?”
“I am awake,” she says in a tiny voice. She sounds like she is on the edge of sobbing.
Xenofos lets go of her arm. “What is the matter, little cousin?”
With a couple of small sniffs, she wriggles closer to him, to hug his leg. “Nothing I should say. Bad dream.” Her words are clipped by the effort of control.
He nods and pulls her hide a bit, so it covers her well. She has stayed under it despite wriggling.
“I think I know those, even if I don’t know yours.”
There is no answer, although the hug is pretty tight. It goes on for a while, until her breathing evens out a bit, and her arm starts to loosen.
“Feeling any better?”
“Please go away now.” Berra slides back to where she way, and a moment later a sword hilt – his – is offered up.
He picks up his sword and goes quietly to his own sleeping area.
After that, Berra’s sleeping hide is quiet, and maybe even peaceful.
Berra has a Very Bad Night