Dance in the orchard

Year 1628, Earth Season, Stasis Week, Fire Day (one day after previous Lenta scene anyway)


At thane Dagmar’s stead Season 3 Sartar arc 7.


The stead is a compound, with a central courtyard where a square shrine to Ernalda has the first of the grain scattered on it. In deference to her husband Yelm’s purity, a net is above it to keep the mere physical food ritually covered. This has the side effect of keeping birds from eating it, which allows the wind to have its chance.

Finarvi and Lenta say farewell to the old man in his venerable hall, full of memories of past years and deeds. As they are leaving Lenta asks young girl at the door to speak with the mistress of the house and says quietly to Finarvi “There is somehting I wish to do, if it is appropriate.”

The girl dashed off, skipping as soon as she thinks she is out of sight, and her high-piping voice can be heard delivering her message.

The girl returns after a few minutes to ask, “Will you wait in the shade? My mistwiss has a ritual to compete.” Still young enough that not all of her words are properly formed.

“Yes, we will. Thank you, young one .” Lenta says kindly to the girl.

The girl comes out with a stool each, and then a third, slightly bigger stool as a table, and a tray of snacks – familiar from the conversation with Dangmar – and some water. Her gap-toothed look of concentration is complete.

Lenta flashes the girl a bright smile. “What is your name?”

“Finivista,” she says. “I am eight. I am the daughter of Thane Dangmar’s granddaughter!”

“Thank you, Finivista. My name is Lenta. You are doing well as a hostess of your stead. “

There is much beaming, and shortly the girl is replaced by the matron of the house, with flour on her apron but not under her nails. “Lady Lenta. I am so sorry I kept you waiting out here. Grandfather Dangmar is resting…” Finarvi gets a polite smile to assure him that he too is cared for.

“It is a very busy time, I apologize for interrupting your work.” Lenta answers politely. “My name is Lenta Hulta. Pleasured to make your acquaintance, mistress?”

Finarvi offers a very polite bow in response.

“Terrendra,” she replies. “What can this house do for you?”

“Your Grandfather helped me and my companion greatly, Mistress Terrendra.” Little Ernaldan explains “It does not look like you would need my aid.” Her hands gesture at the surroundings, somehow painting impression of sickles working, threshing and holy busy scene of harvest-time “But if you allow it I, I would like to show my gratitude with a small gesture?” 1(Fail Harmony to augment charm – special the charm despite that. Pass insight human to gauge her reaction.)

2Insight: She seems pleased by that, in a tired way. The tired state is underlying, not new.

“We would be delighted for our sister’s help,” Terranda replies. “All the more so because it is not necessary.”

“If there is a plot of land that you think could benefit from me calling Our Mothers Ernalda’s smile towards it I would like do that with dance and words? Your orchards perhaps if wheat fields have been taken care of? But you would know best where that could do most good, mistress Terranda.”

Terranda gives her a bright smile. “There are always places that can be aided by such a gift,” she says. “I think I could direct you to one.”

“Thank you, au… Mistress Terranda”

“You may call me aunt if you wish,” she says. “Dear daughter of Ernalda.”

Lenta nods. Her earrings make a small jingling sound.

Lenta looks around ” Finivista? Show me how well you can keep rhythm clapping your hands please? ” And she shows her a simple syncopated rhythm pattern.

The young girl follows, perhaps with more enthusiasm than strict accuracy but the Ernaldan seems satisfied. She ties a band of small jingle bells to her ankle and removes her loose jacket, folding it neatly and placing it on the stool. She looks at Terranda and then around the compound. “Have you decided where, aunt Terranda?”

“The orchard is the right place,” Terranda replies. “There are some late apples, and making sure of then will be good for the trees for next year.”

With jingle Lenta walks to the gate “I think I saw the trees when we rode in. Come Finivista, let us start and let anyone who wishes follow or join in.” She nods to Terranda and Finarvi.

The girl hurries along after a nod from her mother. Terranda says, “I shall follow in a moment. I have a matter to deal with in the house.”

When walking to the fruit trees Lenta discusses the size of the plot with the girl and explains her that she is to follow her and keep clapping the rhythm she shows.

Starting to beat rhythm with her foot and clapping her hands Lenta starts dancing. The rhythm is amplified by her armrings and the bells but it seems to vibrate deep in back of listeners’ skulls.

She dances from tree to tree, tying ribbons to some of the branches.

At some point her face, chest, arms and feet start to glow green and it is as if some of that green surrounds the trees and is absorbed by them, leaving them look like before, but not quite. 3Bless crops spell for orchard – helps with winter apples and the blooming next Sea Season

After a better part of an hour Lenta and Finivista have gone around the whole orchard and return to the place they started, closest to the stead.

Lenta stops dancing and tells Finivista she can stop clapping, which she slowly does. Glow on Lenta starts to fade. She looks sweaty but not really fatigued. She thanks Finivista, who rubs her hands together, for her help. The ritual is over.

Terranda did not follow Lenta’s dance, but brought water and salted snacks, and waited quietly to thank Lenta and look her over. This is someone who has seen dancing in the hot sun before.

“The soil felt good. Solid. Not too rich, but dependable.” Lenta comments as she ties her sandals back on. “Thank you, aunt Terranda. A drink of water is just the thing now.”

“The apples do best with slow soil,” Terranda replies. “Too rich and they themselves suffer.”

Lenta nods, wets a neckkerchief and wipes her neck and chest. “Thank you for hospitality of your stead. We should probably get going Finarvi? Our friends will be waiting.”

  • 1
    (Fail Harmony to augment charm – special the charm despite that. Pass insight human to gauge her reaction.)
  • 2
    Insight: She seems pleased by that, in a tired way. The tired state is underlying, not new.
  • 3
    Bless crops spell for orchard – helps with winter apples and the blooming next Sea Season