1.6

And what do you think you’ll need that for? The fox sat down primly on top of a formal gown Nilien was attempting to pack and groomed one of its paws.

She had been packing for nearly an hour, “aided” by the fox at every turn.

“If I didn’t know better,” she told the fox, “I’d think you didn’t want me to go.”

Reinmonte or not, it does not matter to me. The fox flipped its tail over its eyes. You are already a Rune. You are already my Rune.

“Then you won’t mind if I happen to be a decently-dressed Rune, now will you?”

The color clashes with me.

“Well, I apologize. I did not buy my wardrobe based on your coloration, since I didn’t know you existed at the time.”

Nilien was feeling a bit out-of-sorts. She’d locked the door and even locked the windows last night, enduring quite a bit of teasing from her roommate, Danette, for her nerves, and then slept safely and solidly through the entire night, without so much as a scratch at the window.

She didn’t think it was undue nervousness on her part – after all, if Corinne and Larisse were correct, someone had tried to poison her – but that didn’t help with the faint feeling that she was being silly and overreacting, and that, in turn, made her off-balance and unhappy. The fox, with its insistence on getting into everything, was just making matters worse.

You will have to find things that go better with red, the fox retorted, just as Nilien was about to pack up the small things she kept in her top dresser drawer.

“What? No, now that’s ridiculous. You’re being quite strange today, you know.”

I am being myself. How would you know if I am strange or not yet? You hardly know me.

“I know what strange looks like,” Nilien retorted. “And you appear quite strange at the — oh.” She had nearly missed the pendant nestled between her handkerchiefs. “This isn’t mine.”

She pulled it out of the drawer. It was brass, the size of a coin, covered in both sides with figures that were not letters. One of them looked quite a bit like the mark on Nilien’s hand. “Where did this come from? Did you put this here?”

The fox buried its nose in its belly, looking for something there, biting at its own fur. I’ve never seen that before.

“Do you think it’s dangerous?” She frowned at herself, but, after all, someone had probably tried to kill her.

The fox peeked one eye out. It is writing. Writing can often be dangerous. Pack it up for someone who can read it, perhaps.

“I suppose someone at Reinmonte will probably be able to decipher it.” She wrapped it in a handkerchief and slid it into a small pocket in her trunk. “Now get off that gown. I am not getting rid of my favorite dress simply because it clashes with you. We’ll just have to put ribbons on you or something.”

Ribbons and bows and ruffles, the fox complained, its ears back.

“Pretty and useful,” Nilien countered. She shoved the fox off of her gown and got back to packing.

5 thoughts on “1.6

      1. Not from the authors at this point in time, no. 🙂

        Eventually, maybe. After we’ve pieced it together from clues and incidents perhaps.

  1. Really, it’s as if Nilien doesn’t realize the fox is what’s important. Why worry about schools or clothes, unless maybe it’s cute ribbons and bows and frills for the fox and school to learn how to become a top notch fox groomer.

  2. Oh, she knows it’s important. But it seems to have its own vanity as well, and she’s not willing to yield to that.

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