Wednesday, 23 June 2010

100 Theme Challenge: Spiral

Not as long as the previous challenge. But here's today's writings.

#85. Spiral

Pela danced. She danced alone.

She spun, spiralled, jumped, stamped, danced, for these strangers, alone and unaccompanied. No music other than the bells and chimes in her dress. No partners other than the pavers beneath her feat and the fire in the torches.

Pela enjoyed music - when she didn't dance, she sang - but was wary of the bardmages. She trusted the spirits, made her offerings and prayers - and curses - but she knew in the depths of her soul that no one could truly tame them. So she never sang and danced at once, and never either with someone else.

Yes, it did hurt her earnings, the public didn't know - or care - what danger they skirted every time they put words to notes. But she felt safer not grabbing the spirits' attention. So her dress had to compensate by revealing much and hinting at more. In her paranoia, even the bells and chimes were slightly mistuned and placed so that her rhythmic movements wouldn't translate to a melodic tune.

So she danced, and that was all - she'd sooner court death than the scum that crowded her performances.

Pela danced alone, not just out of fear of being supernaturally noticed but because there was something everyone she'd met lacked. Something divisive. Not just her Traveller blood, though that created a barrier between her and the townspeople she danced for. It was more basic than that. She'd know it when she felt it. Pela felt a cruel mockery of it around the bardmages. She suspected the rabble felt it too, the way they distanced themselves from both her and them.

She danced for money, not love or joy. She had once but those days were long past. Money bought food, shelter and travel. Money open doors. Money would help her find the family she was looking for. A family where that elusive feeling of wrongness would settle and she'd find harmony.

Pela danced like she travelled. Tracing the same path, never returning to the same spot. Her spiral to the world's straight line. Like the troupe she yearned for, she moved with the seasons.

Her steps spiralled in, a tinkle of chimes following, a spring in a piece of clockwork, storing energy, keeping time. She spiralled out, releasing herself, jumping with an outwardly joyous spin.

Pela danced. She danced alone.

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