Mellia — Wild Wild Horses
????, Earth Season, Season/Fertility Week
1626 Earth Season/Fertility Week/Wildday/afternoon at the Great Hospital. [[[s02:session-8|Session 8]]]
Venlar makes himself useful rather than going back to the House. He settles in to help Mellia by reading the patient lists and asking Janina the Fair about small things and listening with every evidence of patience to her explanations. However, during a brief break he takes a moment to lean his head back again a wall and stare up into space and reach blankly for Mellia’s hand. He looks tired.
Mellia squeezes Venlar’s hand. “Beloved, do you want to go home and rest? You look tired.”
“No. I did a thing. I only just realised. And I’m stronger when I’m with you. And…” He looks down. “I got my horse stolen.”
Mellia looks upset and sympathetic at the same time. “Oh no, sweetheart. How did you do that?”
“I gave it to someone to hold, even! If they were hurt – they’ve gone. Disappeared. Someone must have overcome them…” Something in his generous mind refuses to believe the obvious.
“Oh dear, sweetheart. I think you won’t see that horse again. Was that horse specially trained?”
There is brief panic and horror, as Venlar realises something, and now he feels even worse…
“I don’t know,” he says quietly. “It wasn’t my horse.”
Mellia quietly asks, “Whose horse was it?”
“I don’t know if it was a private riding animal, or belonged to the House,” he says, and looks at her in appeal. “I didn’t know how you were. Nala just said I should come.”
Mellia mutters a curse on Nala. “Dearest, perhaps we should just elope before we get thrown out of our families.”
“Obviously I’ll buy a new horse. But if it was a warhorse it might take a while for funds to be sent.” He sighs. “And then I… we can’t elope. I don’t have a horse.”
“We could take my mule cart and the mules,” Mellia points out. “I’m beginning to think that the longer we stay in Nochet, the more trouble we’ll get into.”
“I didn’t mean to. But I should face up to it. And the Blue Tree Clan will be on their way. We can’t not be here. That would be awkward for everyone.” He smiles slightly. “So we should stay. But I want to just be married.”
Mellia smiles brightly and kisses Venlar on the cheek. “So do I, Venlar. I would even give up a fancy wedding to marry you. I still want nice wedding torcs, though.”
“Mm. And I’m sorry. When you said you were going to get up and look for Berra I said you should not do too much. That was not right of me. I must never do that. I decided not to, and then as soon as I saw …” He trails off, and touches his forehead to hers, looking into her eyes. “My life is changed. I have to get used to this, don’t I?”
Mellia gazes back into Venlar’s eyes. She finally nods. “We both need to get used to this, dearest. I’m used to running myself into the ground.”
“I don’t want to be an Earth husband. I want to be your Air. And you’re a Healer. You’re in less danger than most. It’s your decision.” He gives Mellia a smile that has admiration and love mixed in it. “And I love you. I want to see your new Clan, and your river, and your tree.”
Mellia blushes and kisses Venlar again. “I love you. You’ll love the Blue Tree Clan. They are such good, kind people.”
There is a little growl and he pulls her onto his knee. “So. Does your family usually keep war horses in its stables?”
“Not that I remember,” Mellia answers. “It’s not as if Nochet is in danger of attack.”
“That makes it easier, then. But … I do want to stay here. If I go back I may end up with my limbs letting me down just at the point I need to explain myself. But if I don’t, having found I have done something wrong, then I’m hiding from putting it right.”
Mellia nods. “You are right. We will stay and try not to get killed by our relatives. I wonder if Varanis would make our torcs? She makes jewelry.”
Venlar wraps his arms around Mellia, gently. “That would be lovely,” he says. “Bronze with silver or gold inlays?”
“And gems at the ends,” Mellia says. “I haven’t decided what.” Mellia snuggles close.
“Something green for you. And white. Can you get pearls here? I had thought about loops in the end, not gems.” Venlar makes sure Mellia is comfortable. “But I hadn’t really thought about it much.”
“I’ve never shopped for pearls here. We’ll have to go to the market, or ask Irillo. If I’m getting green or white, we should get you a light blue or white gem for Air.”
“I’ve never shopped for pearls at all. Blue would be good for me, although it doesn’t go with my eyes. It goes with my spirit.” Venlar leans back a little to look at Mellia. “We could use tiny pearls and have them in your Runes.”
Mellia looks delighted by the idea. “We could do that for you, too.”
“Matching Runes would make me happy,” Venlar replies. “Air and Mastery, for Orlanth. And if we have room, Civilisation is important to me, and seeing things as they are. Or trying to.”
Mellia smiles and kisses him again. “That’s one reason I love you so.”
After a moment spent joyfully distracted, Venlar says, “I should walk back to the House, and … well, my father will know by now, and so will everyone else. But I’ll admit it to him anyhow.”
“You’re courageous and honorable. Best of luck, my love.”
“Will you be able to deal with Janina? She’s a lovely girl. Just…” Venlar pauses. “I don’t think she quite noticed you were a Lightbringer.”
“She didn’t,” Mellia agrees. “Think I should get a tattoo on my forehead?”
“No. It might make you frown. Get one on your cheek to make you smile.”
“Yes, my love. I’ll look into it tomorrow. I wish I could leave. I feel drained.”
“If I were a Wind Lord, I would be bound to stay. Be careful what you ask.” He has not let go of her yet.
Mellia snuggles for a moment, then says, “You had better go, sweetheart. Go think up ways to make me rest when I get home.”
“I must go find out what I know, and what I owe. Or even worse, what I am forgiven for.”
Mellia nods and gives him one last kiss to send him on his way.
Venlar leaves a quickly scribbled note for her to ask him to read when she gets back.
Mellia pockets the note for later.