Tuesday, November 14, 2006


Mistress Grey reached out and grabbed Mirian's injured arm suddenly, pushing her toward the door. Pain shot up from the elbow, and Mirian bit back a gasp. She clenched her teeth and allowed the woman to propel her toward another servant's passage and a long set of stairs. Mistress Grey shoved past Mirian into the lead as they ascended the stairs, up to a high tower. At last they reached the top, and Mistress Grey nodded to a room. "That is the queen's room," she said. "It is vacant at the moment. Start your duties by making it ready for her. Your quarters are below, on the landing we just passed. You will share the room with two others, who have already been serving the queen well. Clean yourself up before the queen sees you, and in all matters, girl, hold your tongue."

Mirian shot Mistress Grey a look, and said through clenched teeth, "I am holding it."

The woman drew herself up, and regarded Mirian with a look of utter contempt. She reached into a pocket and pulled out a key. "To the queen's room," she said. Mirian stretched out her open palm and Mistress Grey dropped the cold bit of iron into it. "Your duties begin now," Mistress Grey said, and took herself away down the stairs with a disdainful swish of her long skirts.

* * *

Chapter 5 of "Taerith" by Rachel Starr Thomson has been posted! Come and read.


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