I want to feel my feet on the ground

There had been a time when Morgana had feared the dead. They had first started whispering to her when she was a child, not much older than seven. At first she'd been convinced she was going mad; hearing voices in the dark. As she and her power had grown, the whispers had grown faces. Some of them had been old, some young, others kind and a few cruel. The dead, she'd learned, were no different from the living. They were just people, people who had lost things. In the loneliness of her isolated, tormented childhood, rejected by other children, she had grown to find comfort in the dead. The whispers kept her company, their smiles kept her grounded. Morgana often wondered what kind of woman she may have grown into if it hadn't been for her ghosts.

They still whispered, reaching out between the worlds for comfort and grace. As she had bloomed into her womanhood, Morgana had learned that she could tune them in and out like a radio. She could find peace when she needed it, when she craved the silence of interrupted thought, and she could open the door to them when she felt inclined to offer them succour.

Only lately they had been letting her down.

She had searched and searched for Arthur and Nimueh, to no avail. She had asked some of the other spirits who had crossed her path. Most shrugged their shoulders, some shook their heads, and one, a man with a wicked smirk and cold eyes, had muttered about a 'second death'. The words alone, rasped out from between crooked teeth, had been enough to send a shudder down her spine.

Still Morgana searched. She wouldn't stop. What use was her magic if she couldn't find the two people in all of the worlds she most needed to reach?

When Bohdi had come to her in the training arena, and asked her if she might contact Aura, it had been as if someone had lit a candle in her mind. She should have thought of it before. Who better to ask about those who had passed over? Who else could unlock the secret of the world Morgana was only granted glimpses of? Aura had known Arthur, had talked with him, if anyone could find him...

Two birds. One stone.

"Come in!" Morgana called in reply to the knock at her door. She was sitting on the stool of her dressing table, her dark hair swept over her right shoulder, against a dress of midnight blue. Where Arthur had liked his rooms warm and cosy, rich with dark woods and velvets, Morgana favoured the light and airy. Her furniture was white and elegant, with gracefully curving rococo legs, and light fabrics that seemed to ripple like water.

She stood up as Bohdi stepped inside. Kraar peered down at their guest from the top of the dresser, Chip and Hookbeak beside him; three watchful shadows.
"Sit, sit," Morgana said, gesturing towards her chaise longue, upholstered in white and silver damask, "can I get you anything before we get started? Water? Wine?"

photo by darian wong at flickr.com


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