OOC: bonus episode ’cause I am writing on the sequel for NaNoWriMo.
For the rest of the afternoon, whenever anyone held a wing to me, I bit it off. Well, mostly just metaphorically. I didn’t mean to. It went a lot like the day I laid my egg. My body knew that something had happened, or should have happened and didn’t, and that meant I needed to be a vicious berserk monster even if I’d rather not have been.
Dealing with Osoth
In the early afternoon, Osoth flew from roughly Ghemel-wards with a fat and wooly quadruped in his mouth. He dropped it in the red Khamrou sand at my feet, and proclaimed in a rotund voice, “O my fiancée, whose wingtips are the pinnate delights which tickle at the battlements of my soul, behold! An ovine tenderment for your delectation!”
So I bit his cheek.
“Jyothky? Why did you bite my cheek?” He sounded rather perplexed as he healed his face. “Why does bringing brawny bellwether embitter you?”
“You dropped it in the sand!”
“Yes, truly, some of the fragmentary grindments of the mighty Khamrou range do now cling to its sorry mortling. And although I am mightier in the arts necromantic than the arts gastronomic, in this instance, the domains of the two intersect! Observe!” He dripped three words of mercury upon the sheep’s head, each one so heavy that the carcase shuddered beneath it, and then it rose up and did obeisance to Osoth. He commanded it, “Clean yourself, render yourself a suitable treat for yon dragoness!” It stumbled off miserably to the river.
“Now I’m going to have a wet sheep to eat. A sad wet sheep. It’ll probably be treading little circles in my gut,” I said.
“Should you choose to partake of it with the volcanic embellishment that your nigh-achromatic and octo-antlered dearling can provide, it will prove less than wholly humectant. Should you choose precede your meal with a slightly-nontraditional but nonetheless benedictive benediction, it will prove less than wholly animate. Or you can whack it with your vô.”
So I bit him again. He tried to get away this time, and I just got his left forewing.
He took several steps backwards. “Perhaps a different repast would be more to your taste today. Perhaps a different drake would be the one to fetch it.”
I struck at him again, but only to heal his forewing. “I’m sorry, Osoth. I’m being hideously ungracious.”
“Self-knowledge is the root of all virtue, according to St. Ovolo,” said Osoth.
He had just said ‘yes’. Biting him again would have been tantamount to declaring him my enemy for life, and I was pretty sure I’d regret doing that. Especially since he’d just agreed with me. “Who’s St. Ovolo?” I asked.
“A local religious figure of considerable significance to hovens. A dispenser of wisdom, often in the form of aphorisms which the dull-minded might easily swallow.”
“Oh … well, thank you for lunch, and I’m sorry I bit you.”
He stepped back a dozen paces, and arched his head high. “Do you refer to the initial or the terminal bite? Hoping, indeed, that it is terminal, and not medial.”
“Both, really. You didn’t deserve them.”
“As a matter of policy, I would generally refrain from disputing against you in matters of simple opinion. In this instance, I do not merely refrain passively. My refrainder is active, dynamic, tumultuous!” Which is about as close as low-ranked Osoth can come to scolding a dragoness on a mating flight.
So I apologied some more at him, and took a bite of sheep. Raw wet zombie sheep, since we’d both forgotten about cooking and disenchanting it. So I accepted his gift and was not in the slightest trying to kick him out of the mating flight. When he saw that, he flew off. He didn’t much want to be around for my occasional terrible mood.
I didn’t much blame him. If I could have avoided being around me for the rest of the day, I would have done.