abbey cloister with portal

Clean Up on Aisle Six

The courtyard looked lovely covered in snow. Aed looked lovely in his all-together out on a blanket, enjoying the sunshine with his fangs out. While I stood there, I was watching the last of the blood being absorbed into his skin. Walking back to the house, I noticed a subtle difference. No blood smell. Then a not so subtle difference. The blood was gone and there was a looming portal where blood spatter and bits had once been.

I knew the Old Ones’ bones would absorb the blood. Yes, they liked things neat and tidy and a snack or two from time to time. This certainly was better than me dribbling my blood onto the stones. Aed had left them a feast!

The Old Ones could be thoughtful as well as scary…and the fact that they had called a portal for us was just a bit ominous. Twice there has been a portal waiting for me that I had not summoned. The first time was when I had I knifed Roland for trying to rape me. I left him bleeding and screaming obscenities while I stepped through. The second time had been when a company of assassins had tried to detain me at the Old Ones’ bone yard. This must be mentioned…I do not care who you think you are…the bone yard belongs to the Old Ones. And I do mean all bone yards.   If there is any killing to be done there, they are going to do it and it is not pleasant and very messy.   Heed this, for that is just a bit of good advice.

I am always mindful of good advice. Turning I shouted to Aed. “There is a portal waiting for us. We must be gone from here.”

He blew past me into the house.

Maybe I blinked.

He was by me and taking my hand we walked through the opening.

I enjoy living in 11th Century Ireland.

I enjoy walking the streets of 21st Century Dublin. Things are just a bit safer. Purple mists in the 11th century scare folks into staying inside at night and may fire a round or two of witch-hunt but no one in our realm comes looking for you.   In the 21st Century, you spread the magic, around, it can and does end up on youtube. Then you, the perp, have some explaining to do. Rowan can and does burn folks for that kind of misplaced magic. And he requires an audience when he does that type of behavior correction.

Our King likes low-key. Roland, not so much. But he does not throw time-echoes down Grafton Street so the tourists can see what 15th Century Dublin looked like or encourage visiting dragons in full dragon mode to meet him at the pub.   Roland knows Rowan forbids this and that there are plenty of heirs in line behind him.

Of course, if Rowan were to die, all bets would then be off and dragons, along with Roland, just might rule Dublin. I think Roland, in his heart, really wants to rule Dublin…and a few other places, like Earth and the homeland of Fae.

It is pleasant walking the portal line with Aed.   This neither world is very quiet as you see people and places in history slip past. It is also cold and I am once more without my wrap. Just before I start to rub my arms to ward off the chill, Aed has me tucked under his arm, his cloak enfolding both of us. The stars look different, also.   I do not recognize them, not from Earth or the homeworld. I wonder if it is the stars the Old Ones’ use to see…or perhaps they still do.

It does not matter what time of day I walk these portals lines, it is always dusk, fading into twilight. I think, whoever devised this way of traveling, that this was their favorite time of day. I know it is mine.   I watch the stars going shooting by overhead and I wonder if one of those is my mother, saying hello.

I am not going to cry.

“Whose blood was spilled?” I asked and heard the faint familiar echo of my words.

“An assassin by the name of Colin, a witch named Beryl, two guards named Bartley and Arthur. They were vampire, by the way. Their bodies dissolved when the sunlight hit them. A warlock who had a holly tree tattooed on the front of his face.”

“Brown eyes, bald, except for two long braids? Wears a dragon skin bracelet?”

“That would be the one.”

“Oh, that would be Bertie…interesting…he was the pet project of Mistress Iona, until she got tired of what was it Mother said…? ’Tit sucking him through his star and chart alignments.’ Rumor has it that Iona took a broom to him and beat him senseless when he showed up drunk and naked to his practical. I guess a big penis does not make up for stupid or lazy. He was banned from all the guilds. He left and was not seen, again.” I heard him chuckle. “So, I guess he will not ever be seen again.”

“Something like that,” and I could hear the satisfaction in his voice. “So, smart and not lazy is what is found attractive?”

“Well yes,” I replied. “Penis is necessary, big penis, optional.   But smart and hard-working are very sexy.”