B01.013 – The Novice Dorm

Okal Rel Saga. Von visits the novice dorms.

Von is popular with the younger, novice courtesans.

Feeling troubled, Von sought out the Novice Dorm where he expected a jolly reception since he was always in demand as a storyteller.

Instead, he was greeted by the sight of six-year-old Chester staring, perplexed, at a knot of girls gathered around the bunk bed of the eldest novice, Sarah, who sat — crying dramatically — on the top bunk.

“Oh, Sarah, please come down!” pleaded Pam, aged nine.

Four more girls hovered, one with a three-year-old boy in her arms.

“Girls are such bawlers,” Chester remarked. “How do you stand them, Von?”

“Wait a few years,” advised Von.

Chester, who was already good looking in a rough-hewed fashion, produced a big, tough-guy frown. “If I try to make sense of girls — real girls — I’ll mess up. I’m going to stick to the Vrellish women.”

“Uh huh.” Von had heard this boast before. He tipped his chin toward the feminine distress at the far end of the room. “What happened?” Von asked.

“I told them Reetions destroyed habitat in the Killing War because they don’t have souls to get reborn.”

“Ah,” said Von. He tapped a thumb on his chin in mock thought, then dropped his arm. “I’m afraid you’ll have to apologize.”

“But it’s true!” the boy protested.

“Then do it for the practice in managing unwelcome truths. The knack will come in handy if you do wind up with the occasional Demish Lady on your hands. And I never did say Reetions had no souls.”

“You said — ”

“Come on!” Von took Chester by the hand.

Sarah fell silent to watch Von’s approach. Pam hung on the side of the ladder against Sarah’s bunk and the rest shifted to be sure of a good view.

“The first step,” Von told his reluctant pupil, “is to figure out, exactly, what you’ve done.”

“He made Sarah cry!” accused Pam.

“I did,” Chester manfully conceded, and made to redress the wrong. “I am sorry I told you the truth, Sarah.”
Sarah threw a pillow at him.

“See!” Chester stabbed an accusatory arm at older girl, still perched defiantly on the top bunk.

“Chester,” Von sank to his haunches, put a hand on the boy’s shoulder, and pulled their heads together. “Never assume you know what a woman is crying about until you’ve made a point of finding out.”

A couple of the girls giggled.

Von climbed half-way up the bunk’s ladder and hooked his hands on the edge of Sarah’s bed, claiming all her attention. “I know what Chester said, Sarah. Help him out. Tell us why it hurt your feelings.”

“I like Reetions.” Sarah sniffed, began to wipe her nose, and was deterred by Von filling the offending hand with somebody’s volunteered handkerchief. “Reetions live on their own,” she elaborated, accepting the correction of etiquette by pausing to blow her nose with the supplied hanky. “But they’re not Sevolites. They’re commoners.”

“Chester said they blew up space stations,” said Vivian, an athletic little sword-dancer who was full of spunk.

“Von said so!” exclaimed Chester.

“Reetions did destroy space stations and fire on planets,” Von confirmed. The news was met with childish gasps.

“They’re okal’a’ni,” Chester triumphed. “They deserved what they got!”

“Why did Ameron help them?” demanded Pam, fingering the cheap Ameron pendant worn at her throat.

A little girl at Von’s side, called Lila, put out her arms. Von swung her up. He said, “Ameron saw the good in them.”

“But they can’t be good!” Sarah’s eyes filled with tears once more. “Not if they destroy places to live.”

“I haven’t had a chance to read the whole Ameron Biography,” said Von. “Maybe it’s explained later.”

Posted in Okal Rel Saga | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

B01.012 – Di Mon Visits Eva’s

Di Mon visits Den Eva's

Di Mon visits to discuss something with Eva. She hopes it is about her retirement.

Section 12: Di Mon Visits Eva

Eva pulled Von close, and then eased off, crinkling her nose.

“Vanilla again,” she said disapprovingly. “Is Liege H’Us giving you Demoran perfume?”

“It is just the way I smell, all right?” he told her, moving away.

“Von!” Eva laughed at him. “Not even you can sweat perfume!” She took his face in her hand, smiling. “Must I keep reminding you I’m not a paying client?”

Von ducked away, irritated by her failure to see how much the new smell frightened him. He thought it might be an early sign of some disease he had picked up.

They were interrupted by a novice in a white toga, who came dashing towards them from the entrance hall near Eva’s office.
“Eva!” the girl cried excitedly. “It’s Liege Monitum. He’s coming!”

“Di Mon!” Eva breathed the name like a prayer of hope.

The one hundred and third liege of Monitum, known by the use name of Di Mon, was Eva’s best hope for a comfortable retirement.

But Von hated his visits. The grim, Vrellish Sevolite stared at him as if he knew his worst secrets. Von couldn’t help feeling jealous of the attention Eva paid her favorite client, either.

Di Mon strode across Den Eva’s floor flanked by his niece, Tessitatt, and two household retainers called errants dressed in his livery. He wore the emerald sword of Monitum which Von found less impressive than its literary descriptions, and a sweeping cloak with liege marks prominent at its collars. He swept the cloak off into the arms of a waiting den attendant.

“I would speak with you,” Di Mon told Eva, down-speaking her by the five birth ranks between a Sevolite of the Highlord birth rank and a commoner.

“Of course, Your Grace,” said Eva, and conducted her favorite client to her office, trying not to favor her injured leg.

Von focused on Tessitatt Monitum, a capable looking woman who wore Monatese house braids on her jacket, and carried her sword with self-assured confidence. Tessitatt returned him a game smile but apparently was not at leisure. She led the house erants away down one of the spoke-halls radiating from the central stage floor.

Von stood alone for a moment, wishing Eva good luck with Di Mon, with all his heart — as if to make up for his selfish twinge of jealousy, earlier. He knew he could never take care of her in her retirement.

Posted in Okal Rel Saga | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

B01.011 – Eva

Eva, Von's mentor. Okal Rel Saga.

Eva the sword dancer runs Den Eva where Von works. Okal Rel Saga.

Chapter 2: Day in a Courtesan’s Life

Von shot upright out of a perfect landing and dropped his dancer’s sword, crying, “Eva!”
His den mother was bent over, rubbing the heel of her hand into a leg cramp. “It’s nothing,” she said through gritted teeth.
Von’s adaptation of a popular sword dance to make “in” jokes about recent, well attended duels was clever and showcased his own cresting powers. He hadn’t thought, until now, how it challenged those of his thirty-year-old partner.

“The last move is too difficult,” Von blamed himself.

“It’s perfect,” Eva said with finality.

She freed her hair from its tie. It fell straight in a cascade of gold, sticking where it touched her damp shoulders. Signs of aging had made inroads about her green eyes, relieved by light touches of makeup, but her body was still trim and firm in the skin-tight sword dancer’s costume know as a body sheath.

“Will you spare me a kind word, now and then, when I’m retired?” Eva asked her protégé.

“Eva!” Von protested, stricken.

“Let’s see if I can walk,” she said.

He hovered as she hobbled to the chair where their dancers’ drapes waited. Seated, she caught his retreating hand and studied it, stroking her fingers down between the tendons. “You live for today,” she said. “It’s one of the dear things about you.” She looked up into his crystal gray eyes. “But soon you’ll have to think about the future. You may only be sixteen, but men don’t last as long as women in our business. You will have less time than I did to groom your successor.”

“You don’t have to retire,” Von protested.

“I do,” Eva rejected the compliment. “And if Liege Monitum doesn’t make me an offer soon, I will have to retire here.” She smiled. “You would keep me?”

“Oh, Eva,” Von despaired, eyes welling with a devotion that was hobbled by reasons he could not divulge.

Posted in Okal Rel Saga | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

B01.010 – Losing Touch

Okal Rel Saga Serialization - B01_010

An unconscious Ranar is carried away from the com unit Ann relies on to track him.

When the data stream from Ranar’s mission box finally came on the visuals were murky. Echo location schematics sketched a large room full of bolted-down furniture. English translation capacity had survived in an idiot-savant function of the box, but the voices Ann heard were not speaking First Contact English. They were using a kind of traders’ pidgin.

Ranar appeared to be drugged, to judge by his medical read outs. Thomas was smoking one of the vile cigarettes that fouled the air with something Ann’s analysis said was not tobacco smoke. The Gelack across from him sat with a trio of henchmen at his back. At least one henchman looked like a woman and wore a sword. Ann thought the greasy station master wore one too, but couldn’t be sure. One of the other henchmen wore something that looked like a hand gun.

As Ann watched, the woman with the sword flanked Thomas and another henchman picked up the drooping Ranar. Then the mission box jerked up off the floor and Ann’s view of Trinket Ring’s interior went bobbing and swaying through an unevenly lit corridor, pools of light alternating with shadow as the mission box passed. The light was cast by lanterns jutting out from the inner wall, crammed full of something soft and luminous.

The people carrying Ranar went up in an elevator. It opened on a cleaner, brighter floor. The mission box was carried through a set of double doors. Ann caught glimpses of Ranar being lugged into a suite of rooms and dumped onto a bed amid a scattering of dirty clothes.

“Hope you’re comfortable, yellow buns,” Thomas said, leaning over the mission box. “Looks like it’s going to be a bit of a wait after all. You just keep an eye on Ranar here, while I have some fun.”

Posted in Okal Rel Saga | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

ABC’s of Okal Rel – Conclusion

“That was fun, are we going to do it in the Gelack alphabet next time?” – Lynda

“Year, ‘cause that would make it simpler! The whole point of this is to simplify the complexity going on inside of your head.” – Angela

Source: ABC’s of Okal Rel on youtube (Feb 2013) by Angela Lott

Posted in article | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

ABC’s of Okal Rel – Z is for Zrenyl

Z is for Zrenyl. Okal Rel series.

ABC’s of Okal Rel – Z is for Zrenyl, Horth’s Nesak-leaning brother.

“Z is for Zrenyl, Horth’s older brother who takes the Nesak road.” – Lynda

Source: ABC’s of Okal Rel on youtube (Feb 2013) by Angela Lott

Posted in article | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

ABC’s of Okal Rel – Y is for Yellow-buns

Y is for yellow-buns. Okal Rel series.

ABC’s of Okal Rel – Y is for yellow-buns, Ann’s nickname.

“Y is for yellow buns, which is a nickname Ann earned for wearing only skin-tight, bright yellow clothing. She’s on the cover of book 1.” – Angela

Source: ABC’s of Okal Rel on youtube (Feb 2013) by Angela Lott

Posted in article | Tagged , , | Leave a comment