#13 What if it’s a trick
Everything is a flurry of motion. Linnea is here, then there. Making more calls. Someone’s at the door collecting a set of keys to her ‘practice’, and by the time Linnea’s father shows up, she’s all set and ready to go. I’m impressed, despite myself, of the efficiency completely disguised by chaos.
“Ást, Hräsvelg, this is my Dad,” Linnea says, biting her lip, watching nervously between all of us.
“Howdy, Ást, Hräsvelg,” says her father. “I’m Gunnar, Linnea’s old man. He squeezes my hand until it hurts, but only greet him in return. “So, I hear we’re trekking. I can sure use some pastime,” he continues.
He’s sturdy for being an old man, but despite his claimed poor eyesight, his light blue eyes are sharp and on guard. I can tell he finds both myself and Hräsvelg peculiar, and he doesn’t trust us. I hear him murmur to Linnea something about my odd skin colour – well, I guess my lavender tone must be very unusual in the realm of man.
“There’s nothing wrong with your skin colour,” Hräsvelg suddenly whispers into my ear. I nearly jump in surprise. It’s the first words he’s spoken since we arrived here, and he’s never leaned in so close before. When I look at him he’s regarding Gunnar with suspicion and slight hostility. I’m not sure why, and apart from the obvious blunder with commenting my looks, I don’t sense anything malicious coming from Linnea’s father. He’s just very protective of his daughter.
“We should get something to eat before we go,” Linnea says. “And then drop by Coop to fetch some provision.”
“Coop?” I ask.
“Name of the supermarket,” Linnea clarifies, and Gunnar grunts.
“You’re not from around here?” he questions.
“We’re from a different realm,” I say, calmly.
“Trolls?” he asks – and he might be jesting.
“No, we’re feather-skinned,” I reply, enjoying to needle him just a little bit.
“Feather? What’s that supposed to mean?” he argues, taking the bait, and I smile inwardly.
“Raven is my second skin. I shapeshift,” I clarify, loving the way he momentarily pales.
“You’re dealing with fae folks?” Gunnar snaps at his daughter, and I know it’s from worry.
“They’re perfectly fine, and I recognise Venla’s handwriting. I’m all grown up. I’ve been looking after myself for a good many years now,” Linnea says, smiling at her father tenderly, as if she finds his protectiveness cute. I’m staring to find it annoying, but I can keep this to myself.
“Baby girl, it can be a trick!” hisses her father back.
“Don’t be silly, Dad! And if it is, I’ll find my way out of it,” Linnea replies, while brushing some debris off his chest.
I’m debating with myself whether to interject to protect my honour, but finally decide against it.
Then we leave through the heavy front door to get pizza.
Feathers and lore,
There’s much, much more,
I didn’t realise walking would take so long. Ravens don’t normally walk for long stretches. We fly. But since Linnea and her father don’t fly, walking is our only option. For a long time, I’ve had no choice but to accept my circumstances. This is just the same. I just have to accept what is […]
#16 A veterinarian
Summer nights are bright, the sun merely kissing the horizon. I’ve taken a seat on the tiny front step to the small cabin – and as I sit here I let my eyes wander. The red painted wooden houses, and the small yard in the middle – then the tree line closing this place in […]
#15 A moment to myself
Travelling by wing is infinitely better than travelling by machine. And you all know how I feel about changing into my raven skin after centuries trapped in it. Still, this is freedom. I find myself rethinking the ways in which to be imprisoned, and I wonder if perhaps my sister is too – somewhere in […]
#14 Maybe we should fly
Pizza lacks enough meat to satisfy my raven and is completely drenched in melted cheese. Remind me to never have it again. My stomach is still rebelling, and it’s known to be made of steel. It might also be the means of travel upsetting my stomach. I’m no longer trying to follow the road with […]
#12 And then they were four
“I need to make a few calls,” Linnea says, and goes to collect a strange, flat device. When she flicks her fingers over the glass surface it lights up in different colours – just like magic. I study it, pondering what she means with making a few calls. Are we visiting people? A beep is […]
#11 “I thought she was dead,” Linnea says.
Linnea’s eyes grow impossibly wider, and at first I’m convinced Hräsvelg’s appearance crumbled what little progress I’d made with Linnea. But she takes a few deep, strengthening breaths, then looks between the two of us. “Wow,” she says, and shakes her head. Her hair is even lighter in colour than Queen Venla’s, and it’s tied […]
#10 The realm of machines
The morning sky is the same, yet different. Another realm – it’s such a strange and uncanny feeling to be here. I’m further from home than I’ve ever been. “Where to?” Hräsvelg asks me. I can’t believe he’s still here, and yet, undeniably he is. He kept the fire going all night, then he got […]
#9 Please steal me away
We’ve stayed the night at the Gränstorp central inn – a small, quiet town where reality wears a crack. A good night’s sleep has at least restored some of my patience. Still, I don’t blame the innkeeper for the wary looks he’s giving Hräsvelg. My ‘companion’, despite the large variety of elementals visiting this small […]
#8 Friend or foe?
I’m still staring at him – this stranger that I’ve apparently flown into unwittingly. I can’t wrap my mind around how it happened. I was so careful reading the winds and the landscape – I should have noticed another flying creature. Well, I’m supposing he flies, how else could he have been up there in […]
#7 A stranger
All set. I take one last look at the petite city behind its protective wall, surrounded by tall mountains. There’s something about this place – wild and tame all at the same time. The stone cottages, and the winding streets. A restless part of me can’t wait to leave, another can’t wait to come back […]
#6 Been underground
I’ve just come back from an ambassador assignment. It took me away from writing. Perhaps you’ve learnt by now that there are many, many kingdoms in the Elemental Realm? Or Fairy, on the other side of the thin borders, faultlines – or whatever you choose to call it. I’ve just come back from Fenilya, which […]
#5 The secrets of the vaults
My raven ancestors have always been carefully keeping notes of the realm, the different elementals, the kingdoms, special occasions, interesting decisions and fates – it serves as our lore, inspiration and guidance for future reigns, future leaders and elementals. To falsify the historical notes was considered a very grave crime, not only in the present […]
#4 Your true talent
Hamingja is an internal part of our self, of our spirit, but something that’s still been regarded as a separate entity. Some believed that their ‘hamingja’ could be inherited by children in their linage, to which I’m doubtful. But what is ‘hamingja’? It translates as ‘luck’, and has over the ages deteriorated down to skill […]
#3 Hamr and hugr – and changing skin
Perhaps you are aware that many elementals (elementals are human-like beings with affinities for different elements like air, fire, water and earth) have more than one skin – ‘eigi einhamir’, meaning ‘not of one skin’ in the old language. Hamr is our body, our skin – and because of my raven nature I can alter […]
#2 Where I grew up
I’m restless when I’m here, back in the little town of Ravnea, and the raven kingdom, that I suppose will always be home. I’m observing the folks that do call this home, and I’ve come to the conclusion that I don’t feel the same. Where I find Ravnea a quint, little town, the shops satisfactory […]
#1 When I’m only thought
Black feathers, and a croak that’s heard for miles. I’m not aware of time when I fly. Endlessness and eternity breathe the existence – and all I am is thought.