Hello, this is Christopher. Thank you for following me in experience in this new life in this version of Omphalos. This will be my last entry for a while, but ‘Waiting for Rebirth’ and I will return on Tuesday, April 4th in ‘C is for Christopher’. Damian might follow me with a little more in ‘D is for Damian’. Perhaps Gabrielle will as well. Both of them can be a bit capricious. I fear this Cauldron will be swarming with other characters during the month of April. It’s the ‘Blogging From A-Z Project: Character Snippets’ after all. I will return to my regular periods of posting ‘Waiting for Rebirth’ in May. I look forward to seeing you all again when the weather is warmer.
In the meantime, enjoy this fragment of ‘Waiting for Rebirth’, prelude to ‘Tales of the Navel/The Shadow Forest’.
Gabrielle didn’t ask me to do much of anything other than watch my first day in the Navel. Or perhaps one could say my second day. It was a curious place with curious customers.
The first was a girl, long and lanky. She wore a violet blue cape, which concealed her body, although she raised her hooked nose in the air like a bird of prey.
“You know what I want,” she said. She marched straight up to Gabrielle and stared at with eyes like the sky during a storm. “Give it to me.”
“Why don’t you ask my son to help you?” Gabrielle asked in a gentle voice, which put a certain distance between herself and the customer. She beckoned to me. “Christopher, can you figure out what Hebe wants?”
“Yes, can you?” The girl, Hebe turned with slow reluctance from Gabrielle to me. She looked me up and down with a growing frown. “I dislike explaining myself.”
How am I to know what you want unless you explain yourself? I thought. I didn’t say it out loud. She was a customer. Customers were the lifeblood of a business. I dimly remembered someone saying that once. I wasn’t sure whom.
Hebe started to hum under her voice. Only her lips weren’t moving. No, the sound wasn’t coming from her. It sounded exactly like her voice, though.
I walked towards the faint singing. It grew louder, when I approached a row of cups. All kinds of different cups, from golden goblets to pretty painted porcelain dishes with saucers.
I reached out towards the cups, only to feel something pushing my fingers back, pushing them away. I passed my hand over them, in a gesture almost like a blessing. A heat tingled through my fingers, when they hovered over an exquisite glass goblet.
“Here,” I said, before I realized I was speaking. I picked up the glass and held it out towards Hebe.
Hebe smiled. The expression transformed the harsh lines of her face into something beautiful. She took a few steps forward and accepted the glass.
“You’ll do,” she said, with a nod. She glanced over at Gabrielle before she did a small pirouette. “You’ll do just fine.”
“Yes, he will,” Gabrielle said. She smiled at me, too. The sun seemed to shine a little brighter, dancing in beams around me.
Hebe turned to leave, carrying the goblet. Gabrielle watched her go, without saying a word.
“What about payment?” I asked, when the door chimes jingled with what I thought was a customer’s departure.
“It’ll be the usual,” Gabrielle said. She shook her head. She was wearing a white cap with long peacock feathers dangling down from it. This matched weirdly with the long, turquoise skirts, green tunic, and purple jacket she wore. “Don’t concern yourself with it.”
Ah, but I did concern myself.