Thursday, 5 March 2009

Groping For Some Sanity....

Roland left his penthouse apartment in a thoughtful mood. The conversation with Kingsteignton had unsettled him. He tried to avoid any conflict with other Old Kingdomers, but if Kea was out there he needed to find her and bring her home to the clan.

The clan needed all the members it could get; three was not enough to create a new generation and improve the bloodlines. Of course there was always the option of 'turning' a human. But in Roland's experience however much they said that they wanted it and were excited by the idea of immortality in a totally new form, once they had got over the initial excitement they pined for their old lives, family and friends. The monthly change was hard enough for those born to it, but unless a human was mentally and physically strong enough, as well as totally committed, it could devastate them. Roland had seen some tragic cases of broken turnlings, left to live out their very long lives in mental confusion and shattered bodies.

The rigid structure and hierarchy of the clan, which was basically a pack after all, was also hard for turnlings to assimilate into. Especially recently, when human society was becoming less formal and class-bound. People nowadays were just not used to obeying a leader, such as the clan chief, implicitly and did not understand the importance to the survival of the whole clan of them keeping to their place and fulfilling their duties without question.

Roland was also grimly aware that as the clan leader and alpha male, that he needed to find a mate. Could Kea be the one? Or was she just a child like Proserpine? Was she in fact alpha female status? They wouldn't know that until they found her. Or should he seek out that rare thing, a human female who was both immensely physically strong, incredibly intelligent and emotionally grounded. A natural leader.

His musings came to an end when he found himself in front of the door of the apartment where Malvolio and Proserpine lived. De Cazalrenoux Holdings owned the whole block, which was now mainly rented out, but clan members tended to live here because their apartments needed some very special adaptations which would have been very hard to explain away to a more traditional landlord.

He needed the sanity and comfort of his clan and as he turned his key in the lock he could hear the excited squealing of a seven year old running down the hall.

"Roland, Roland, come and see what I am making," screamed Proserpine as she threw herself at him at full speed.

He caught her up in a huge hug and swung her around, her dark curls swinging.

"Is it for me?" he asked as her put her gently down and led her into the large, bright kitchen/diner.

"I'm trying to get her to eat her breakfast," said Malvolio drily as he slid a huge stack of pancakes onto a plate in the middle of the table.  "So please don't excite her any more than she already is!"

"Don't be such a grump," Roland shot back at Malvolio good-naturedly. "I want to see what she has made for me?"

"It's a special pancake, Roland! It's in a heart shape with extra syrup just for you!"

Roland accepted his special pancake with lots of praise for the 'maker' and a cup of coffee from Malvolio. Roland was aware that Proserpine was going through a stage where she had a bit of a crush on him and that there was some serious 'hero-worship' going on. He was also aware that although he knew it was natural for young female clan members to go through this, Malvolio was a little touchy that he was currently not number one in his young charge's eyes. Proserpine was beginning to test her boundaries and would not behave for Malvolio, but would do anything that Roland asked.

After they had eaten and Malvolio had sent Proserpine to get ready for school, Roland told him about his conversation with Kingsteignton and asked him what he thought he should do.

"Trouble is Roland, you don't know whether or not Kingsteignton's telling you the truth or just spinning you a line. You know that he would say or do anything to get what he wants."

"Yes, but can I take the risk of not meeting him?" asked Roland.

"When are you meeting him?"

"At his club at midday; that specialised car of his is a wonderful piece of machinery."

"Pity about that," retorted Malvolio. "Maybe someone should accidently open the door? Look I think you should see if you can get more information before you meet him. See if you can get a confirmation that he does actually have this Kea?'

"Yes, but how? There isn't enough time to put it out over the networks and even if there was that could just put Kea in even more danger?" Roland asked.

"Wasn't thinking of that," Malvolio replied cheerfully. "I think that you should stick to what has worked before. You need to book an appointment with Sue Fisher."

No comments:

Post a Comment