Blackbird Lantern: Excerpted from a diary

Dear Diary...

Why does Feneng keep looking at me like that? Do I have a snot-thingy? Did one of the larks crap in hair? Should have noticed that. Guess will take bath now.

Dear Diary...

Is still doing it. Maybe poor girl has some kind of vision problem that no one saw fit to inform me of. Thanks, ladies! Just leave good ol' Blackbird Lantern in the dark, right. He doesn't ever need to know anything.

And stupid Hospitable Spear is doing it too! Maybe something in water that makes these Red Cliffers nearsighted. V. disconcerting.

Have just been informed I have new quarters. Will comment on once moved.

Dear Diary...

New quarters are in communal dormitory area. Have cell with three walls, great ocean window, chest for things, windows to adjoining cells. Have remembered intoxicating effect of godmark.

And this, the mark, it brings me to a quandary.

(Ed.: Here the text breaks into Nrittandih of the poetic mode. It is rendered as prose by this translator.) I am Blackbird Lantern, of Veamándhi-of-the-Marshes, of the Ninth-night county, son of Sparrow Brand, son of Effulgent Nightingale before him, son of (Ed. The litany of lineage crumbles into an illegible scrawl, as signatures are wont to do.) I am not some soft-chinned inheritor, but an eater of gods! I have the golden blood because I danced with the fire until she bared her throat and begged I drink! I feel like I am on display.

Ed.: Text changes back to conversational Seinundjé. I'm not sure whether I want to remain on display. It's a disservice to the good women of Red Cliff; I should explain the situation as I did at my home, or I'll spend all my time here surrounded by fascinated moths who have other tasks they should attend to.

But I do enjoy the looks. And the visits.


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