It was the smell of breakfast that woke me. I was used to Shady being up long before everyone, but she seldom made breakfast. Walking the perimeter being just a bit more important to her lately than foodstuffs.
Sage Lehu was at the fire, a pot of oatmeal hanging from a tripod and a pan of scrambled eggs cooking on a piece of slate in front of it. I don’t know where she got the eggs… She looked up as I stirred, fresh wrinkles appearing around her grandmotherly smile. I really like this lady. She’s like being around a tree, utterly calm and absolutely compassionate. Apparently she’s Mr Crowley’s foster mother, which makes her very old indeed (and even more tree-like IMO).
“I, uh, yes, thank you.” Sue me. I’m not used to people doing things for me. “Where’s Mr Crowley?”
“He and Shady have gone for supplies,” she said, ladling some oatmeal out into a bowl and dropping a generous handful of blueberries on top. “The eggs will be done shortly, dear.”
Tim and Trina woke up shortly after, Tim accepting Trina’s share and carrying it back to her. I’m worried about her, but it’s reasonable for her to mourn the loss of her brother. I just wish she wasn’t blaming herself. She wears her guilt like a coat. Tim rolled up his sleeping bag while Trina held her bowl in her lap, not eating. He forced her out of her hammock and into the garden where they’ve been spending most of their time. The sunlight is good for her at least. It’s hard to be depressed in the sun, surrounded by flowers and birdsong.
Everyone but Lullaby appeared over the course of breakfast, but that wasn’t anything new either. I know she’s been slipping away to the woods, despite our warnings. I hope she’s at least finding fruit to eat while she’s out there. I’d take that damn doll from her if I could, but… well, I’ve read her blog. They’re still connected despite ripping the little monster out of her. Maybe I’ll ask Lehu for her opinion.
Lehu and I spent Sunday walking around the grounds. She’s incredibly spry for someone her age. I pointed out the wards I’d put up, but I hardly needed to. She walked right up to them without being told where they were, making a beeline for some from several yards away. It gave me the opportunity to check on the witches bottles, but nothing seemed disturbed. The grass was green and long with no signs that anyone had dug anything up, at least recently.
She was most impressed by the protective ribbons on the swing. We stood and watched Tim push Trina on the tire for a while, though Trina hardly seemed to enjoy it. “Give her time,” is all Lehu said as we wandered over the grounds. Shady ghosted Crowley, and I trust her to know more about construction than me. Just as she trusts me to know about magic.
Lehu knows a lot about magic AND science. So she’s got a leg up on me. She had some really interesting ideas concerning incorporating charms into the electric fence, twisting wire into symbols which become empowered by the electricity itself. Also earthworks and landscaping, digging up plants and arranging them into a pattern which would use their intrinsic life-energy as a living ward. Fascinating.
She also had some insights into my little energy problem. The obvious part being, I’m an energy magnet and I don’t ground myself enough, so I tend to draw off energy when I’m stressed (like always) or depressed (periodically) or hungry or angry or really just anything other than calm. So have to ground more, have to not reign in my temper so much as learn not to get angry.
I do not foresee this working any time soon.
But I’ve gotten a great deal of practical ideas from Mr Crowley’s foster mother. Hopefully I can implement them once the rest of the house is taken care of. I can hear engines so I’m pretty sure Shady and Mr Crowley have returned. Which is good. I thought I saw something on the edge of the forest a little while ago, right after Lullaby appeared and ghosted up to the second floor looking haunted. Lehu looked worried too, so I’m sure it wasn’t just my imagination.