Fight For A Better Day

Saffron smiled shyly she wasn’t sure she’d ever heard anyone describe themselves as obnoxiously friendly. She’d thought Grayson was friendly though maybe not in an obnoxious way. Tristan had been politely friendly she supposed though that nasty little voice that liked to niggle whispered it had been more to do with pity or a sense of duty to his real friend she was just the little sister of. It was the same little voice that tried to tell her to give up, that she’d never be good enough to a guard; that blood would out. During the day she could distract herself, shut it out at night that niggling voice became the nightmares that kept her awake. Saffron ignored it now as it whispered that maybe this was just more pity. She may not always be the best judge of character but she didn’t think it was right. Or at least she hoped it wasn’t.

Taking the hand, he’d offered she gave it a quick shake, admittedly slightly more interested in taking the next to be offered hot chocolate than shaking hands. Unscrewing the cap off the thermos, she flipped it and using it as a cup poured some of the drink into it. Steam rose into the air and she blew on the liquid to try to cool it down. “It’s nice to meet you too and not just cause you come bearing hot beverages, though that is a plus I admit,” she was still smiling as she fumbled over her words and cursing herself for blushing blew harder till she was satisfied she wasn’t going to burn her tongue.

Taking a sip, she sighed, gods that was good and heat spreading through her hands where she gripped the cup was helping with the chill. Saffron considered as he mentioned the Stone Dragon and that they met all sorts there wondering if that meant Tristan. Part of her wanted to know if he was okay, part of her knew she shouldn’t care if he was. He’d killed there King, committed patricide, it was wrong to care. So, she didn’t ask, settled for a nod instead it was safer. “Hmm, no I’ve uh never been,” she rubbed the back of her neck. The other recruits talked about it though; usually in reference to nights they went drinking. Nights Saffron tended to avoid with great skill. “I know some of the other trainees go though. I didn’t actually know you did food, they mostly talk about the booze and uh,” she paused trying to work out how to be subtle, “well they talk about girls or guys they meet; that sorta thing”. She shrugged it wasn’t like she was particularly part of the conversations in question but you overheard things in the barracks.

Taking another drink, she let it warm her up, the muscles she’d been using slowly relaxing as she leant against the fence. Holding the cup out she offered it to share. “More obnoxious than a bunch of puppies that’s hard to imagine,” she grinned, “Though I’ve probably said worse about my brother all in the name of love of course”. That she understood, she hated Grayson when he left, when he’d leave her to looking for their mother or because he had some innate desire to explore the world. Yet, she loved him whenever he came home it was unconditional. He was family and he understood her she’d always love her brother for that.

She didn’t ask when he mentioned the ‘kinda-sorta stepdad’. Families in Shaman could be complicated; look at her own. “The forest?” there was curiosity in her voice, “Thought it wasn’t safe there anymore with… everything.” Rebels and robbers and Shamans odd collection of creatures how could it be safe? Not that she could imagine, Tris, the boy who brought her books hurting innocent people but obviously what did she know? “Me? No, uh, I’ve not been doing it that long. I started before… before everything in the castle happened. I’m not even a real guard yet. I’m just a trainee. I wanna be. I wanna be I mean do good. I know that sounds naïve,” she shrugged there was no other words to explain it, “Your mother was a Captain? She must have been dedicated. Did she work with the current Captain of the guard?”

Stand Up and Fight! Stand Up and See The Sky Turn Bright

photo by Shan Sheehanat flickr.com


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