092 Chapel Days · Scene 10
es Master Squawk, there is.”
It was not uncommon, in fact it was expected, for nuns to address almost anyone as ‘Master’ bar children and members of the Cardinal Church. That the nāti pilgrim whom Maye addressed, Squawk, was a childhood friend of Chain’s, he was not only barely considered a man rather than a boy, but was nearly half Maye’s age and a fellow member of the church. Considering the rather volatile nature of the relationship between the two of them as well, it was not lost on Squawk in the least the intentions behind her choice of address. Withdrawing from the unkempt bushes he had been occupying himself with, Squawk dusted himself off and turned an interrogatory gaze onto the nun who addressed him.
“So, you’ve made that your decision then. Hmph! Why am I not surprised that a fool would be so drawn to that idiot?”
“There are many reason’s Master Squawk that I would make that decision, and almost none of them are for the heretic’s good.”
“Is that supposed to be a warning to get me to go along with this nonsense?”
The question bit at Maye and she was taken aback, unsure of what the best response would be. Squawk was a mystery to her, and she had no easy conclusions that she could jump to with him. The way he spoke further belied any emotional connections he might actually possess beyond bolstering his own ego. Yet there was something in his eyes that told Maye that when it came to speaking of Chain, who he so casually dubbed ‘idiot’, there was something more. Using that and her age as a steppingstone to try and get him to do as she preferred, Maye presented her own question of him.
“Do you believe the heretic is endangered by me.”
With a mighty harrumph, Squawk folded his arms and smiled behind his beak.
“You may be a violent fool, but it would seem you don’t prevent that from knowing when to think. An impressive feat in such a brutish horse of a maid.”
“I will try to let that turn of phrase pass Master Squawk. Instead I will ask you; what is your decision?”
Maye had to apply more than a tremendous amount of will power not to lose her temper with Squawk and strained to ask her question of him. Her question of choice however brought back out Squawks own ire, and he raised his voice putting many a nun on alert.
“Utter madness! Do you have any idea what it is that you are asking me to do⁈ I am a Pilgrim of Atheaeldre and what you are asking of me would be to throw that away!”
“And I am a Sister of the Cardinal Church, Master Squawk. However, I do not believe this decision is one that will separate me from my beliefs and faith. No, I believe it will only bring me that much closer to Her Eminence.”
“An easy thing for you to say, fool! You do realize that it is only obvious that this madness you will not relent on will bring you closer to the Saint⁈”
With an accusatory finger being shaken at her, Maye swallowed tersely. The truth in Squawk’s words stung and she could not refute his claims of her selfishness. Her decision was made however, but having made her decision, she needed Squawk to make his lest it all be in vain. She would not have so boorish a youth impede the path she had chosen for herself and clenched her fists and steeled herself to challenge him.
“And is that so wrong? In this age where the Cardinal Church has lost it world saving influence seemingly over night it would be best if the world again recognized the blessing of her light. One that the heretic also possesses.”
“Pah! Does she now?”
Squawk threw up his arms as he scoffed at Maye’s attempts to appeal to him. It was not the reaction she was hoping for but was also one she could work with. Though there were risks involved.
Squawk may not have been aboard the Chapel for long, but he had already developed a terrifying reputation. In the first meeting that the nuns of the Chapel had had with the young nāti he had introduced himself in spectacular fashion. Though a simple human being, he was proudly possessed of the ability to raise his voice to levels that could be heard for miles upon miles and cause damage to those in his near vicinity. It was likely that ability had saved his life many a time as a traveling pilgrim in so harsh a world, but if Maye were to illicit such a reaction from him, she could very well earn the ire of every nun aboard the mobile fortress. Yet she had already made up her mind and would not hold back on following through with her decision. Raising her hands as though to fold them over her bosom, she spoke the words that would wake the beast.
“Perhaps you should ask her yourself, she has already made me familiar with my Ambrosial Gate and I–”
And it came, a shout that Maye was prepared for. She had lifted her hands not to fold them upon her bosom to enforce her pleas, but rather to shield her ears. Shield her ears as she did though, her eyes still watered, her teeth rattled, and her internal organs felt pressed by the force of that shout. But Squawk’s tirade was not yet over, and she could only ponder if she would live through it.
“THAT IDIOT‼ AFTER HAVING THE NERVE TO MAKE ME OF ALL PEOPLE WORRY, SHE THEN FAILS TO EVEN SEEK ME OUT‼ WHEN I FIND HER, I SWEAR SHE WIL GET AN EARFUL THAT WILL STRAIGHTEN HER OUT FOR LIFE‼”
“I don’t believe that will be necessary Master Squawk.”
Surprising herself as she fought against blacking out, Maye managed to speak a single coherent statement as she lost the strength to keep her hands upon her ears. Speaking as she did though could be perceived as protecting Chain and considering Squawk’s foul temper that was not necessarily a good idea. Fortunately for her, Squawk resumed a more humanly tolerable volume as he leveled her with a threatening glare.
“And why would that be you fool⁈ You don’t mean to tell me that you think she should get away with worrying me, do you⁈”
“It is not that Master Squawk, but rather that I am certain she is already aware of your ire wherever she may currently be on the Chapel.”
“Utterly useless you brutish horse! Should my decision align with your desires after I’ve tracked that idiot down you will surely regret it! Now, out of my way as I go find the idiot you couldn’t be bothered to keep track of!”
Stumbling weakly aside, Maye barely managed to get out of Squawk’s way as he stormed off in search of Chain. Squawk did not even have to meet with Chain and make his decision for Maye to already regret it though. Just meeting with him had already exposed her to the weapon he held in his throat and chest and she wondered aloud about her decision.
“Was this really such a good idea? Guide me Your Eminence lest I lose my way on the path I have chosen.
Copyright © 2019 Joshua D Tarwater