Normally, I would plan on putting together an interview or something interesting on writing. However, as many of you know I’m still plodding through remodeling. Today the new floors are going to be put into the master suite…or maybe the countertop. I’m not sure to be on.
So I figured I’d toss in what I’ve been working on lately. The hubby and I are working on a story that centers in Heian-era Japan, Japan in the 9th century to be specific. It’s been a lot of fun, but the research is kind of difficult. So here’s the prologue so far.
The sun kissed her body and Brigid sighed in absolute contentment. She stretched out her right paw and then brought it back in to lick it and wipe the right of her face, then the left. Such were the simple pleasures and joy in this form of her favorite animal.
Then again the reality of the predicament reared its head again.
What am I to do about Marcus?
She wished greatly to test him, but she could not decide how to accomplish that. If only she could think of an idea.
Brigid considered returning to grooming herself, but the satisfaction from the act remained a distant memory. She rolled over and stretched after getting to her feet.
She heard a sound and swiveled her ears to catch more of the noise. A voice captured her attention. She rotated her head to pinpoint the origin of the utterance.
A child sobbed into its hands. Brigid narrowed her eyes. It appeared to be a female child about seven or eight cycles old from the far eastern part of the mortal realm. Nippon perhaps?
With her goddess eyes she could see the girl’s hidden form.
A Dragon! How thrilling!
t had been so long since she spied a dragon. Yet the girl seemed far from excited. She sobbed in between pauses of silence, all while staring at a massive game board.
Brigid found it odd that a deity would bring a game to this haven. For her, this realm was a warm sandy beach, with sea salt in the air.
The dragon child leaned over the board and sobbed again.
Brigid felt her curiosity rise beyond measure. She stretched again and gathered herself into a crouch, loving the feel of sand between her feet, acting as a massage for her pads and paws. She moved in closer to the girl and stopped ten feet away.
The girl looked away from her game.
“Oooo, kitty!” She said.
A Goddess getting caught by a dragon? How pitiful that I could be caught.
The girl rose from her seat and ran over to Brigid, but stopped short. She smiled a toothy grin, lowered herself to her knees. The dragon with a child’s face extended a hand.
Brigid extended her nose and sniffed at the fingers, even though she could smell the girl just fine. Yet something made her purr.
“You’re such a pretty kitty,” the girl cooed. “May I hold you?”
Brigid decided to continue the ruse. She stood up and rubbed her body against the girl’s left leg, waiting to be lifted. Tiny hands wrapped around her and lifted Brigid a short distance to her chest.
Soft and gentle lips brushed her brow.
Are dragon deities always so soft and gentle?
“I was hoping I could meet a friend to talk to,” the girl murmured. “I really need a friend after what my brother has done. I could use assistance or advice. Let me explain.”
The dragon goddess stood up and hefted up Brigid, carrying her to the game board. Brigid found herself on a wooden pedestal that appeared. The high perch gave her a good view of the game board. Yet the term ‘game board’ was not an apt description for this toy.
The board looked like the Nippon islands and many colorful tiles represented different things within the map. There were armies, priests, an emperor, peasants, and crops, as well as other aspects of the life in the mortal realm. The map seemed to zoom in on some point like a city. Brigid narrowed her eyes again, watching individual pieces interact together in intricate detail. She could see mortals, animals, and other beings.
“This is my land,” the child explained. “My mother and father gave me these lands when they took on other duties.” She moved her right hand over the board and the scale of the map increased. The areas around the Nippon islands became visible. The islands became a dark red as another land mass to the west of the islands turned jade green.
“These are my brother’s lands,” the dragon girl explained. “Father didn’t think I could be responsible for such a large area. In private I complained to my brother about it but he said not to worry because he had a plan. He said it would be easier to control our lands if we built a great game board together. This isn’t the main game board. It’s in our realm. It’s much larger than this of course. I only take this with me when I wish to be alone.”
Brigid looked over at the girl a moment, impressed with the idea of a complex game simplified to this board. It must take a great deal of work to get it to function correctly. It reminded her of world-building games in the mortal realm.
“My brother is so good at this game,” the little dragon informed Brigid. “I couldn’t keep up and I would walk away from the game to pout.” The girl looked into the distance for a moment. “Then my brother proposed that we just watch the game and not play it. I didn’t think my side was in a good position to win, but at least he wouldn’t be interfering with the game anymore. For a few hundred years, we watched.”
Her eyes teared up again.
Brigid stretched out a paw and the girl allowed her to wipe away tears. The dragon girl rubbed Brigid’s head and back.
Brigid lost her concentration and rolled onto her back to get her tummy rubbed.
The girl continued to pet her. “My brother’s people have become so dominate that my people’s culture has almost disappeared. He swears he doesn’t play, but there are signs that he does and he cheats!”
The dragon goddess began crying again. “Why would he do that to me, kitty? He’s older and he has so many advantages? Why does he have to be mean?” Her sobbing grew louder.
Brigid decided she needed to do more than just listen. She sat up again, and took on another form and embraced the other goddess.
“I understand why you cry, little dragon,” Brigid said. “You said you needed help and I wish to help you.”
The other goddess hugged her in response. “You do?”
“Yes.” Brigid changed her form again, to her favorite maiden form, a blonde, freckled, green-eyed girl who might have seen seven to eight cycles. Brigid beamed a full radiant smile to her new companion. “Now, let’s get back at your brother!”
Her new friend stopped crying and grabbed her arm.
“This will be so much fun!” Brigid promised her.
Hope you all enjoyed. Now back to smelling fumes! 😛