Chapter 1.15: Eyes For You

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From a safe distance, Daniel and Daniela watched the confrontation unfold between Shane and Maru.

“Didn’t see that coming,” commented Daniela.

“Oh, I’m pretty sure I did,” Daniel replied.

They could see Shane shove Maru into the dust before turning on his heel and leaving Kaila’s camp.

 

 

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“In fact,” Daniel said, pulling out his wand, “I think I’ll send the young man a little good luck charm. For the girl. But I have a hunch he doesn’t need it.”

“You and your wand,” Daniela smiled at him and stood aside.

 

 

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After his blow-out with Maru, Shane needed a drink. Or three. He felt shaky from the adrenaline. His reaction surprised even him; he’d literally been seeing red.

When he’d last seen him, Maru was angrily ordering Shane to stay away from Lilith, even though Shane rarely had the occasion to speak to her before bumping into her in Champs les Sims. Honestly, he’d always remained aloof simply because for years it had been obvious that Maru had feelings for Lilith. And, Maru was her best friend. ‘Was’ being the operative word, Shane mused. If she had anything to do with Maru now, then Shane had her all wrong.

 

 

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The bartender smiled knowingly and refilled his glass as Shane began to talk. Listening, after all, was the unofficial but universal part of any barkeep’s job description.

“I really didn’t know she was gonna be in France, it was Maru that told me, after telling me to stay the hell away from her. And then I come back and hear all this shit about Maru sleeping with that, that witch. How could he do that to her? What a mess!”

 

Diamond Rio – Beautiful Mess

 

“Worst thing is, Norm, I did run into Lilith in France and I did have a great time getting to know her. Right before she left, it hit me I think I might…I love her. Now I feel robbed that I did leave her alone so long, just so Maru could wreak havoc and hurt her so much.” He took another gulp from his drink. “Or hell, maybe it was just the French sun, or air, or the damn butterflies…. Butterflies,” he murmured.

“Or maybe it was the girl, Shane,” the bartender smiled and took away his glass.

“Let me let you in on a little secret, Shane. The girl has had eyes for you for a long time. But you sober up,” the bartender went on, “Sober up before you think any more about this. That girl has been through a lot these past few days.”

 

 

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Seeing wisdom in the bartender’s words, Shane pushed back from the bar, leaving a large tip.

Looking out over the sea, he noted the sky was getting dark and rain clouds were gathering. All the better. Less people around to witness his half-drunk confessions.

He blew off some steam by slamming billiard balls across the table until he felt steadier.

He wondered what Lilith was doing….but Norm was right, she didn’t need to see him like this.

 

 

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His ears perked up when he heard Lilith’s laughter ring out. She started to sing on the lower level of the Community Center.

 

 

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Moving to the railing, he stood looking down across the Community Center, watching her sing. She’s beautiful, he thought.

 

 

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Shane decided he needed a nap, to sleep on the day’s events (and to sleep off the drinks).  Trudging across the upper level of the Community Center, he slipped between the piles of hay bales and curled up on a pallet. He dozed off listening to the rain pattering on the roof above, and Lilith singing sweetly below.

 

 

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When he awoke a couple hours later, dark had deeply fallen and the skies had cleared. Walking home slowly, he noted the waxing moon. It would be full in a few more days.

 

 

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On the other side of the village, Kaila too was ruminating on the nearly full moon. It was funny how things worked out sometimes, but she knew now that what she’d seen in her fires had been true. She’d been surprised by Shane’s ‘visit’ to her camp earlier that day, but in retrospect, it shouldn’t have been so surprising. It was Shane’s ship she had seen in her fires, returning to the island, a ship that somehow related to Lilith.

Maru, having spent himself in her, was stretched out by the fire beside her, looking down to the sea. “I’ve been thinking,” he mused.

“I thought I smelled smoke,” Kaila smiled.

“Oh, very funny, woman.”

“Well?” she prompted.

“I was forcing the whole ‘natural progression’ thing, on both myself and Lilith.”

“Yes.”

“I did her wrong.”

“Yes. But I am not sorry that it led you here.” She laid a hand over her stomach.

“It will be hard watching her move on,” he admitted, “but maybe this is the right course after all. Things happen for a reason.”

“Yes.” Kaila smiled, and then stretched herself over his body once more.

 

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Story/Challenge notes:

That last scene was an impromptu write-in for 2 reasons:

1., for ReyaD 🙂 Her comment about how Maru seemed happy with Kaila wasn’t off the mark. No, Maru shouldn’t have cheated on Lilith. But the hidden backstory is that Maru was obsessed with his idea of ‘natural progression’, and he was convinced it should be with Lilith, as she was his best friend. But he kept fumbling things when it came to her, and kept turning to Kaila. Lilith of course is not at fault, but both she–and Reya–were right: Maru deserved something better for himself. Lilith is not meant for him.

and 2., to assure you that Kaila doesn’t hold a grudge against Shane. She’s got what she wanted. Although she’s a witch, she has refrained from serious meddling with spells, until Maru asked for her help several times in When One Door Closes. Bad witches are fun for story purposes sometimes, but serious “witches” adhere to “An’ it harm none”, and know that what goes around comes around, so manipulation is not often a good idea. And Kaila is not a bad person, or a bad witch. She just had some bitchy moments, like most of us. And let’s give Kaila a break–she’s already been jilted by Daniel Rivers. And unbeknownst to the current story line, she conceived when Maru stayed with her after he first tried to kiss Lilith. You may have noticed at the end of the last chapter, she’s starting to show.

So thanks everyone for your reading and your comments. The basic story line for generation 1 is in place, but many nuances and side-stories are influenced by your comments 🙂