A boat on the Valda

We tried the “pale wheat slops made by a Khas” that Tilis was famous for. Ruzyn sort of liked it, Riei liked it a lot, it was too sour and bitter for me (but it did make me less thirsty), and Arni spat it out. Then we got a flask…

To Tilis

Little Arni was awake first the next morning and poked me awake too. I didn’t know where I was for a moment, in a room that felt strange but comfortable, sharing a bed with Riei that was narrower than the one we had at home. The fort of the Greys!…

Scared away

When we got home, big Arni was cooking, and it smelt deliciously of onions and fish. “Go and wash first,” Arni said, and pointed to our bedroom where she’d put buckets of warm water ready. While we were drying ourselves, Riei said, “I think I should tell you something but…

Staying up all night

The house was a mess. Lyase-Lédu took one look at it and tied up the boat so she could help clean. We carefully worked around the woman sleeping in a corner of the kitchen and managed not to wake her up. “I’m working in the temple this afternoon,” Riei said,…

Maile’s island

When the boat came back Arni climbed into it cheerfully, but Riei looked as if she was in two minds about it. I grabbed her hand and said “Let’s go!” and she came with me, but she didn’t let go of my hand and leant against me all the while.…

Arni’s house

Someone was shaking my shoulder, and I didn’t see at once who it was because I was in a strange bed in a strange whitewashed room, under a strange striped blanket! The person shaking me was small, a girl of about seven, and she was saying “If you get up…

The family house

People were starting to do sailory things around me, so I stuffed the monkey in my work-bag and went to have a look at Essle. It mostly looked dirty from where we were, not as grimy as Albetire but still grey and grim. The sea-water was the colour of mud,…

In sight of Essle

There are lots of things people can earn their living with, but I’m very sure I’m not going to do it as a sailor. I was only a little seasick but it’s not the work for me. I know that a person can learn to understand any kind of work…