Facing the Storms

Title: Facing the Storms
Time Period: November 121
Characters Appearing:

Summary: Two outcast children share a quiet moment before the storm.

The harbor, at times, is a bustle of activity. At nightfall, fishing boats come in with their catch and the factory workers nearby earn their night's repose. But the ominous storm clouds looming in the sky and the Sunday mid morning hour make the place still and cold; the fishermen will wait until the storm passes where it is warm and dry and safe.

Quiet and still are two qualities that Beisdean Skye appreciates. Rarely seen in the market or the harbor these days, he keeps to himself in secluded spots or helping with errands at his home, the Dovetail. Today, he takes advantage of the storm — as it shuts most people in, it gives him more room to roam without worrying about people whispering and pointing.

Walking, his eyes are turned up to the sky, watching the clouds move swiftly, their gray shapes reflected in his blue eyes. The marten that is often with him scampers down at his side, stopping to examine the remains of some unlucky fish before abandoning the tidbit.

It seems he's not the only one out despite the storm. Standing nearer to the water, dressed as always in boys clothes and her hair a mess, Bridget seems fixed on the water. The other kids were already around to snicker and point in the odd girl's direction, but the clouds drove them all home, too. It's hard to say if the girl has even really noticed the cold and the coming storm, since she's not even wearing a jacket. Or shoes. But she is known to be somewhat absent-minded from time to time.

Of course, she's been out this way everyday since her father left, at least a little while. More often than not, her uncle has to come drag her home, but for now, she's left to her own devices.

The boy watches the younger girl for a moment, glancing back over his shoulder to decide if he should return the way he came. He avoids most of the children these days, but those who have lost loved ones, he avoids most of all.

Do to others as you would have done to you, murmurs Darklight in his head, and Beisdean glances down with some irritation at the marten.

"I would rather others leave me alone, which is my intent," the boy murmurs, voice soft and not meant to carry though the wind plays tricks in such a place, carrying his words back away from him and toward her, just as the tide carries the water to and fro the shore.

She is not like the others, Darklight replies, and then, to avoid arguing perhaps, suddenly launches from the ground as his brown fur becomes white and gray feathers, turning into a gull as he takes flight.

"Showoff," Beisdean calls after, laughter crinkling his eyes as he watches with admiration as his familiar soars.

The laughter brings Bridget's attention back to solid ground, as it were, and the girl turns to look back his way. She's prepped with a sour glare, as if expecting a less than friendly visitor. But, seeing who it is, that expression calms down and she lifts a hand to wave instead.

"Not planning on a swim, are you? Weather's turning mean," she notes, as if someone might have missed it. Her gaze turns back to the water, though, and she sinks down to crouch, her arms wrapping around her knees.

Beisdean returns the wave and moves closer, looking at the clouds rather than his familiar now. "She's a temperamental lass," he says. "And no, no swim for me. That water is probably colder than a witch's…"

Coughing, Beisdean remembers perhaps too late that Bridget is, in fact, a girl, and also younger than him.

"Big toe," he amends a little awkwardly. If she doesn't know the phrase, he isn't going to be the first to introduce her to it.

He puts his hands in his pockets and stares out beyond the water. "He'll be back soon, I'm sure," is a little uncertain in tone despite the confidence promised by the words.

"That makes even less sense than sayin' tit, you know," Bridget says, apparently unembarrassed. but her dad is a soldier, so maybe it's not so surprising. She looks up at him, her shoulder rolling slowly. "Hard to say, with the water. She does things her own way, and doesn't much care what your plans are."

She slumps when she looks back out there, her head tilting to one side and she sighs quietly. "Maybe it'll be a short storm."

A smile curves Beisdean's lips, and he, child of one of the Dovetail prostitutes, blushes for the both of them. "Feet get cold," he says in defense of his misquote.

The rest of her words make him grow more solemn, and he nods, hands coming out of his pockets to rewind his scarf a bit tighter around his neck as the wind picks up. "Most things do," he mutters, a little darkly. "Do things their own way and not give a shite about you."

It's a rare quiet time for him — she and Darklight are his only companions at the moment, but he knows that will not last.

Bridget looks down at her own toes, wiggling them for a moment. Before she actually flashes a smile in his direction. Feet do, indeed, get cold.

"Pretty unfair, don't you think? Something out there should be more yeildin'." Her head tilts again, and she gets a quizzical look about her, "Why are you out? Your mum need something?" It seems like she's willing to be helpful, should there be a need, but could be that she might just need a distraction.

"That'd be nice," he says of the yielding. Wishful thinking.

Beisdean shakes his head in response to her query. "Storm brings folks inside. Crowded over there today," Beisdean mutters, words accentuated with a handwave in the general direction of the Dovetail.

Raising his face back to the sky, he scans the clouds for Darklight. "I like the quiet. Especially when it's quiet in my head, too." He speaks in euphemisms about the ghosts; they make most people uncomfortable at best, judgemental and afraid at worst.

A fat raindrop lands on his nose as he looks up, and he reaches to wipe it away. "Hopefully it's not going to be too bad. I didn't see any Storm Bringers, did you?"

"Makes sense. Best to have company when it's cold out. Sitting in an empty room's just sorta… blah," Bridget waves a hand out toward the clouds. But his comment makes her look back his way, puzzled for a moment, but she seems to catch on after a moment. "Yeah, I guess I never thought how crowded it could get in there."

She holds her hand out palm up as the rain starts to fall, but she shakes her head. "None yet. Should start showing up some time soon. I wouldn't be surprised."

"They're so regal and beauti-" Beisdean's words are cut off as he turns to his left; tension coils into his shoulders and the line of his mouth as he shakes his head. "I don't, no," he whispers, taking a step back and looking to the sky.

As if bidden, Darklight's winged form comes back into sight and comes to alight upon the tall boy's shoulder. Wings seem to dissolve, legs grow, feathers melt into fur until the marten stretches itself across Beisdean's shoulders.

"I don't," repeats Beisdean, and he turns away from Bridget, shoulders hunching in that way that makes tall young boys look all the more gangly and awkward.

That change in the boy makes Bridget stand up, watching as his familiar appears and shifts forms. She is, in fact, so fascinated by the display that it takes her a moment to remember to be concerned about the boy.

"Beisdean?" She reaches out to touch his back, hesitating only a moment with a glance to Darklight before she follows through. "Are you alright?"

The hand on his back makes him jump and turn back to her, until he seems to recoil from whatever it is to his left. "Pardon," he mutters, whether to the visitor she cannot see or her, is unclear.

"'M all right," is offered to her with a nod, but the pallor of his face and the way he hugs his own elbows suggests otherwise. "Sometimes they… sometimes they're like when they died," he whispers, before he flinches away from the empty space beside him.

Sometimes they don't know they're dead, either, and don't take kindly to that revelation.

"I don't know anyone by that name," he whispers, more insistently to the empty space, before blue eyes dart back to Bridget.

"We should get home before the skies open completely." His voice is louder, trying to be casual, trying to be normal. "You being barefoot and all, you're likely to catch sick."

Bridget's face scrunches up at that explanation, and she looks passed Beisdean as if she might catch sight of it herself. "Not pretty sometimes, I wager." But her hand waves over in the direction she assumes the ghost is standing, "Let him be already, for crissake." Scolding what amounts to an imaginary person, it's little wonder how she earned her outcast status with the other children.

"Oh, I'm not worried about that," she remarks about her feet, "But I wouldn't mind some warm tea… I got some back at home, if you want a cup, too." While she does start walking away from the water, she can't help the almost longing glance backward. She'll be back again, probably sooner rather than later.

The scolding makes him smile, and he hunches his shoulders up and then down, his eyes cast down and away rather than to see the grisly thing beside him, or any pity or amusement on Bridget's face.

"It's nice of you to ask," Beisdean begins in the tone of someone about to refuse. "I should go get some chores done before the rain hits worse, though." The excuse has a hollow tone, as if he doesn't truly expect her to believe it.

His eyes move to the horizon and back to her. "I'm sure it won't be long," he repeats again with a small smile, a bit forced as he tries to leave the meeting on a positive note, despite the grisly interruption.

With that, he ducks his nose into his scarf for warmth, and turns to set off for home.