Aidan has fallen asleep, but before I nestle myself against him, I'll first write my notes for this, because it has been a long day with many complicated things happening.
First the cases:
It turned out that we didn't talk about Hylti at all. Erne was busy scrubbing the floor of her workroom. She looked almost dead with exhaustion. What she told us was that a girl working in the house next-door had had a miscarriage in her third month, right in the workroom. She had sent the girl over to the hospital in the donkey cart, Rani had come to fetch her. I asked Erne for permission to take over the scrubbing, and made her sit down, drink some wine and tell us about it, while I scrubbed. When I was busy, Erne said she was going to drink herself senseless tonight. I did not think that a good idea, so I asked her whether she wouldn't prefer to dance and have a nice bath. I gave her a little note for Ehituwa, so she would give Erne a bath even late at night, and Erne went to a Síthi inn to have dinner and then for a dance. I also did her makeup for her -- I hope she has a nice night. I'll visit her tomorrow morning, after the service, to see that she's right.
Then Leva and I went to Doryn's house, to have some wine ourselves and something to eat before going back to the hospital. The cook gave us some chicken and told me that he would like to start a small inn with Doryn (who doesn't yet know, apparently, about his fondness for her, nor about these plans). I also helped the owner of the house get rid of some tenseness in her shoulder muscles, with semsin and my fingers.
At the end of the afternoon, the stonecutters' guild's apprentices and journeymen came to the hospital, as I had asked them. Before going to Coran, I told them what I intended to do. One young man found it necessary to make an inappropriate remark about me, responding to a perhaps inappropriate remark of mine (namely that I hoped that nobody would find being cared for by me sufficient reason to be stupid and die early). His remark was the more inappropriate since his fiancee was standing next to him. When he repeated the remark, she told him that if he hadn't said that thing about me, he would have been married within a month, but that that wouldn't happen now. I am very distressed I have caused these two people to leave each other!
About the demonstration: I first let everyone put their ears on Coran's chest, then on Faran's, so they could hear the difference. Then I made all the gifted stonecutters -- five in all, one, a certain Ayran of the Deceiver -- look with me into Coran and Faran's lungs. One of them, the girl who had repudiated her fiance lost consciousness. They were all very shocked. I followed this up with a good scolding outside the hospital. I will repeat this in a year's time, and then Orian's widow will come, too, and tell them about what it is to be a stonecutter's widow.
There was one stonecutter's apprentice, a young man named Ayran, who has made himself belong to the Deceiver. I did not want to deny him the chance to look at Coran's lungs and learn, although his touch was extremely unpleasant on my skin and his mind felt not very good at all. I was quite embarrassed so I asked him to come for dinner.
When they left, he stayed behind a bit, looking at me as if he were trying to gather the courage to fight me, and at the same time not to fight me. When we went inside I asked him -- very nicely, I thought -- to please consider not fighting with me, not even what they call a "formal fight" that can be a Master's trial. We're both about as far away from becoming a master, actually.
He thought I had merely invited him to warn him off, but it wasn't meant as a warning! These followers of the Deceiver are very touchy. But it wouldn't be wise, because I do not know the rules, nor am I very interested in them, actually.
But then other people started to arrive for dinner: Aidan, Lyse, Halla, Alyse, Ayneth, Jilan, so we were ten all-in-all. And although he was very wary of Aidan and the other semti at first, he gradually felt more at ease, and when Ayneth, Alyse and I went for the evening's dancing lesson, he was in a deep discussion with Aidan.
Actually I was afraid that he and Aidan were going to have a fight, since Aidan also needs to go through his Master's trial soon, and I wanted to know whether I would be allowed to kill him if he hurt or killed Aidan in such a trial, but it seems I am not. But when we came back from dancing, they were still talking earnestly and seemed to be the best of friends. I will ask Aidan about it all tomorrow morning, since I had been so improper during the dancing lessons that I couldn't wait for us to be alone -- Aidan's lightest touch made me shiver with pleasure.
Today I have behaved most improperly. Not only did I go with Aidan to the school for war where we slipped into an unused room in order to take pleasure in each other -- it seemed a good idea at the time, but I later realized that if master Jilan had noticed it, it could have meant that Aidan might have lost his sergeancy -- but Dimani demonstrated dancing with a cloth at our dancing lessons, and Dimani and I demonstrated dancing together.
And while I had never done something like that before, I have seen women dancing together in the Palace, and Dimani had demonstrated some very improper movements. So it went very well: well enough, in fact, that Ayneth and Lyse had the greatest difficulty in not behaving very improperly themselves. (Although not together: Ayneth's fidelity to Raith is very commendable. Ayneth wants master Jilan to paint her, and I thought that if it were done soon enough, she might be able to send the painting with the King to Solay, so Raith could enjoy the sight of her lover as soon as possible.)
Dancing brings one very close together, and it was very nice to be so close to Dimani, because even her scent reminds me of my previous life, and I do not want to forget or repudiate that. I thought that perhaps Dimani and I could dance in front of Jilan and Aidan, but, on reflection, I think that's one of those thoughts that one had better not follow up on, but that are caused by the impropriety of the moment.
In any case, we all enjoyed the evening very much and Aine is going to try the new movements on her fiance. Leva was also present. I thought she needed an evening off, because she complaining about tiredness and getting old. I thought at first she would just watch, but then I thought -- four of the eight positions (five, if you include the eight position with one leg stretched forward and the other folded under the buttocks) would be perfectly attainable for Leva, even if she has a game leg. She enjoyed it very much.
But we were very improper, indeed. Almost as if we were drunk with dancing.