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A Summer Barbaric of Shenanigans

Chapter 16

Filly needed rest after her morning adventures in town. She settled herself to spend the remainder of her afternoon sitting by the open Tambeaux transport, spray painting the long white tube Ionny had given her for a didgeridoo.

When a flock of giggling teens wandered by, she called to them, asking for the time. They called back the information and Filly sought out the eyes of the siren embedded in the face of that young teen man, of the Tambeaux dynasty.

“Have you a moment to sit with me?” She asked him directly, with great mystery, “to chase away the ghost of loneliness?”

The boy hesitated, recognizing her.

“Y’all go on. I’ll keep the old lady company a bit.” He said softly to his companions.

“Yeah, you will,” leered one of the bawdy boys.

A couple of them joined together, whispering a derogatory chant that they thought to be complimentary in their ignorant youthfulness. Filly ignored their implications of older mothers liked by younger boys and carried on painting, waiting for the teen to begin conversation.

When they were alone, he watched her painting and politely inquired with more of an elongated accent than Filly expected,

“Are you enjoying your kidnaptivity?”

Filly chuckled,

“It’s not kidnap if I go willingly, nor is it captivity if I want to stay.”

He huffed and asked bitterly,

“Are you sure that’s not a Stockholm reply?”

“Are you enjoying your kidnaptivity?” Filly asked in return.

The boy looked across the festival grounds and shrugged dismissively, responding in a southern drawl Filly finally recognized as the tongue of Cajun influenced American Trevel.

“I make my best of summer vacations.”

“Does your Father not treat you well?” Filly asked innocently.

The boy paused before responding,

“Count Tambeaux is an easy man to follow after. His footsteps are wide and free.”

“And… is your mother well?” Filly asked quietly, pre-sensing a negative response.

“My mema is well in the Elysian Fields, m’lady. She returned there after leaving them once already, to have me. Then once having had me upon these stiff and mortal plains, she departed again, for her eternal rest.”

“I am sorry for your loss.” Filly touched his arm in acquainted comfort. “With what name, did she bless you, before departing?”

The boy looked a little startled and said,

“They were the only words she uttered before she passed away.” He was incredulous as if this woman sitting with him might have already known this.

But, then he continued, dismissing his gut misgivings,

“Luc.” He replied, “Luc Tambeaux.”

So, he was Tambeaux family. Much satisfied, Filly dismissed her own gut misgivings.

“Well, Luc, one of the Light, as you name means,” Filly winked at him, “do you paint?”

Luc laughed,

“Hell no.”

“Then do you swim?” Filly changed tactics.

“As much as possible.” Luc grinned happily, flicking a spray of water from his fingertips, giving away his water Energist abilities.

“Then let us partake of the lake’s delight?”

Filly gestured to the lake on the far side of the hill. Many carvaneers were already defeating the summer heat in the cool waters, so the boy and woman joined in the crowded splashing.

Luc swam deftly underwater and above, diving in and about like a whale.

“You must have selkie blood in you boy.” Filly called to him.

“What’s a selkie?” one of the young girls joined their conversation, seeking to flirt with the handsome young Luc.

Luc educated her,

“It’s a Celtic tradition of people who are like were-seals.”

The girl looked confused, so Luc continued,

“You know, like werewolves, only seals, not wolves.”

“Ooooh! That’s so pretty.” She exclaimed.

Luc bantered back with her,

“If that’s true, then you must have selkie blood, too.” And he splashed her gently in the face.

The girl babbled in the flow of water and waved it away from her, back onto him. She laughed as they battled back and forth in water Energist powers.

Filly turned her back on their flirting to leave the young folk be, but continued listening over the waves of water that carried secret whispers so easily.

Luc leaned in to grab at the girl and snickered,

“I’m not selkie though. I’m something much deeper.”

The poor girl was lost in his charm. She blinked eagerly at him and followed his leading statement with her natural question,

“What is that?”

“They say,” he whispered closely to her face, “my family history comes from a terrible siren.”

The girl giggled in his entreating charm as he continued,

“My ancestor was the most terrifying siren of them all, Sainte Mathilde!” And as he called her name, he pounced out of the water, sounding on the wave tops like a great manta ray showing off his strength.

The young girl waved the water away from her face again with skepticism.

“I know who Mathilde was and she was no saint.” *

Luc drew near to her face, just above the water and whispered threateningly,

“Not to you, maybe…”

Then he grabbed the girl and licked her neck with a tiny bite.

“But to me, she is my vampiric goddess.”

The girl squealed in delight and pretended to pull away, only to end up kissing him full on the lips.

Filly walked out of the beach waters and shook her hair within spray reach of the sunbathing Count.

“You might want to reign in your young cock, Count Rooster.”

Tambeaux sat up, gazing at Filly in her wet bathing suit, asking but not really caring,

“What?”

Filly nodded back to his son, kissing the watery sunshine.

“For the sake of females everywhere, he should take a break every now and then.”

Marin grinned in fatherly pride, but yelled,

“Oi!” and tossed a handy ball at his boy’s head.

The ball bounced on the waters, splashing the young couple,

“Give it a rest, mate,” Marin suggested.

The two giggled guiltily and swam over to a floating raft.

Filly sat beside the Count and sighed wistfully. She turned to look at the man, ignoring his dark shadows. Then she leaned over and kissed his lips gently, lingering in the moment.

When she pulled away, she sighed apologetically,

“Sorry. I get lonely somedays.”

“Everybody’s lonely, sweetheart.” Marin responded with a victorious smile.

The two lay quietly in the sun, drying and sweating in the heat a while before Filly began her prepared conversation.

“I was doing research in town this morning.” She opened.

Marin yawned his response quietly, almost asleep,

“I was wondering where you’d gotten, too.”

It’s difficult for me as I’m not an earth Energist, but, I’ve been looking at the history of Hanain diamonds.”

Marin allowed a tiny pause in his regular breathing to almost give him away, but he maintained a bored tone to his voice.

“Shiny black diamonds are naturally interesting to many women.”

Filly corrected him,

“I’m more interested in their rough, pre-processed form.”

Marin sat suddenly and almost barked,

“What do you know of that?”

Filly just stared at him over the top of her shaded glasses with a you-know-who-I-am stare.

Marin calmed his tone and added,

“I mean, what exactly do you know of that?”

Filly sighed to relax herself before sitting up and replying,

“Well, this morning I was reading about the first discoverers and traders of raw diamonds, or should I say, smugglers.”

Marin looked away silently, trying to give nothing away, yet revealing everything in his attentive attitude.

Filly reached down to hold his hand, lifting it open, palm up, onto her knee. Then taking a drink of iced water from her other hand, she leaned down and traced his fingers with a chunk of ice in her mouth, leaving the ice in the center of his softly creased hand.

They sat staring at the ice melt quietly until the infamous water Energist shook his hand and moved to sit alone, with his arms hugging his bent-up knees. He blinked furiously at a trickle of water forming in the corner of his eye. Sniffing proudly, he sighed with a hardened heart.

Filly coaxed him with more story,

“I also read about a terrible accident at one of the secret Upland storage facilities in Venice. A Trevel ambassador died in the explosion, and another secret partner was severely injured. But no names were published, publicly anyway.”

Marin remained stoically silent.

“As Oracle of Atlantis,” Filly told on, “I have access to classified information. In fact, I’m often sent on secret Royal missions to discover if those hidden secrets, are still well kept.”

Marin’s emotions faltered finally and he dropped his head. With quiet resignation, he prompted her,

“Go ahead then. You’ve been wanting to tell me who sent you to find me since we first met.”

“Your friends.” Filly answered, “you are not, nor have you ever been, alone.”

Marin sputtered a short, mocking laugh.

But Filly urged him,

“There are procedures that need to be followed in the public eye, it’s true. But after those laws are satisfied…” she paused and lowered her voice even quieter, “there are underground movements that see to all justice being completed with mercy and grace.”

Marin looked at her confused.

“That’s my job,” she smiled.

Marin snarled his lips together skeptically.

But Filly insisted,

“You don’t think I’m just some religious-duty puppet to appease the masses, do you.” She teased with a wink, “for I am so much more than that.”

Standing, she laughed and urged him to rise with her,

“Come. I will show you.”

And she led him off to a private tent for meditation.

Pre-exposition Letter by the Scribe

Part 18

If you would like to see more of Gregga’s books and other creative projects, check out her website: Gregga J. Johnn and Story-in-the-Wings.

 

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