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Paragraphs-at-a-Time Story, "The Branch" #7 - Laura Wise

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September 7th, 2009


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06:02 am - Paragraphs-at-a-Time Story, "The Branch" #7
The story continues. We're now climbing, climbing...

Last time we ended with “Okay then,” he said, and turned, and made his way up the path. They were almost there.


He didn't wait for her, and for a moment she didn't follow. Instead she looked at the dusty trail up, at the two charred trees clasping branches overhead and the huge boulder beyond that, and remembered.

She'd first walked this path in winter. She'd been alone, having moved up onto the mountain with an inheritance from her godmother and some vague idea of cooking, skiing, finding herself. Her magic had been stirring even then.

As she remembered now, she climbed.

That first walk had been at early winter dusk, at afternoon-night, although here on Mount Lemmon the sunset couldn't be blocked by the Tucson Mountains to the west. It had snowed a few days before, and sunset transformed the drifts into orange-pink clouds on the ground.

But the path had been clear. She'd climbed fast, although she never had been able to say what had pushed her forward.

On the path had been tracks she couldn't read. She'd been too stupid then to know what she was looking at. A big-footed cat, she knew now.

As she remembered, as she breathed in the knowledge, she climbed faster. Tim had disappeared around the boulder already.

That boulder – twice as tall as she, sun-washed and pitted granite – jutted out into the path, cutting it almost in two. She stopped and struck knife against rock, listened to the sweet ringing of the steel, heard the rock swallowing the sound like water. Not good.

“Jessa, hon,” Tim said from beyond. His sorcerer's voice had changed again, but she needed to hear it now. Good.

One hand on the rock, one hand on her knife, she turned the corner and smiled through her fear. The picture was the same as all those years ago--

The lone tree over the precipice, the golden Branch catching the sun, the mountain lion pacing on the edge of the world.

Except now she saw the Branch was breaking.
.............................................


(22 comments | Leave a comment)

Comments:


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From:freixenet
Date:September 7th, 2009 12:47 pm (UTC)
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Loving it.
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From:laurawise
Date:September 7th, 2009 01:28 pm (UTC)
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Thank you thank you, F. (And I hope you're feeling better today, too!)
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From:anne_d
Date:September 7th, 2009 02:23 pm (UTC)
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Your descriptions are like paintings - I can see them.
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From:laurawise
Date:September 7th, 2009 04:22 pm (UTC)
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Thank you, A! That's a lovely lovely thing to say. :-)

Happy Monday!
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From:laurawise
Date:September 7th, 2009 04:23 pm (UTC)
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Silly Jessa didn't believe Tim when he SAID it was breaking! ;-)

Thank you so much for reading, L, and commenting. I am grateful indeed.
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From:paratti
Date:September 7th, 2009 03:34 pm (UTC)
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Loving it.
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From:laurawise
Date:September 7th, 2009 04:24 pm (UTC)
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Thank you, L, thank you! And a good Monday, too. :-)
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From:kathyh
Date:September 7th, 2009 04:58 pm (UTC)
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She stopped and struck knife against rock, listened to the sweet ringing of the steel, heard the rock swallowing the sound like water. Not good.

It might not be good inside the story, but the image is lovely. This is so intriguing.
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From:laurawise
Date:September 7th, 2009 05:37 pm (UTC)
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That sentence gave me fits, so I am SO VERY GLAD it worked for you! Thank you thank you, K!

And a happy start of your week, too. :-)
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From:stateless82
Date:September 7th, 2009 05:32 pm (UTC)
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An inheritance from her godmother- I love it.
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From:laurawise
Date:September 7th, 2009 05:37 pm (UTC)
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Too Cinderella? ;-)

(Actually, it's come from my own recent thinking about being a godmother!)

Thank you thank you, Susan, and a happy Monday!
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From:mobile_alh
Date:September 7th, 2009 06:20 pm (UTC)
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nice cliff-hanger -- ;-p
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From:laurawise
Date:September 7th, 2009 06:47 pm (UTC)
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Thank you thank you, ALH! [bows]

(Hee.)

Happy Monday!
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From:gwynnega
Date:September 7th, 2009 08:16 pm (UTC)
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Ominous and lovely.
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From:laurawise
Date:September 7th, 2009 09:47 pm (UTC)
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Thank you for reading, Gwynne, and for saying lovely things.

Happy start of the week, too!
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From:laurawise
Date:September 8th, 2009 09:40 am (UTC)
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Thank YOU, C, for kind words! Thank you!

Have a wonderful Tuesday, too. :-)
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From:laurawise
Date:September 8th, 2009 09:41 am (UTC)
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Rainkatt, thank you! Also, hugs. :-)
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From:pinkdormouse
Date:September 8th, 2009 09:33 pm (UTC)
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And the imagery continues...
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From:laurawise
Date:September 8th, 2009 11:06 pm (UTC)
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Yep, it's rather image-heavy. :-)

Thank you so much for reading, and thank you twice -- may it be a good midweek for you!

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