Aurora stormed back to her lodgings and slammed her door shut. Everything smelled like fish. She smelled like fish. She couldn’t not smell like fish, it was in her clothes, her bloody hair smelled like fish. She was halfway across the world. How did she end up here?
The room seemed to twist slightly, but it couldn’t be because she was sober, damn it. She didn’t conduct business drunk. She took two steps over to low table, yanked out a stick of incense, and fumbled the match to light it twice. Now her room would smell like incense and fish. She plopped down on the cushions that surrounded the table. Cushions in place of wingback chairs, a raised mat for sleeping, a narrow closet for her ever growing collection of clothes in bright silks and embroidered cranes. She looked over into the mirror. The woman in the mirror looked back, her dark eyes a bit wild. She couldn’t place her. Aristocratic bones, dark hair and eyes, tanned skin, eastern dress. No one back home would recognize her.
Here she was, halfway around the world, and for what? Following two men she’d known all of six months across the seas? Running from pirates. Becoming a pirate. What would her parents think?
What would her parents think. She took several deep breaths and managed not to choke on the incense. A bath would help. Several cool drinks of water, and a visit to the baths. She was becoming someone she’d never expected. She weighed the feeling as she shed her clothes. It wasn’t a bad one. It was the expectation of judgement that had her in a breathless panic. Which was ridiculous. She pulled on her bathing robe and belted it as she heard her two roommates return. Now was not the time to discuss her sudden internal crisis with her friends. She shook her head and let her hair hang loose. Friends. The best friends she had. Ever. People who knew her and liked her anyway. They themselves were an odd pair, and the three of them worked well all together. As she started down the back stairs to the bath house, she weighed her friends against the possible recriminations of home. And her friends won. It wasn’t no contest, but it was a very solid lead. She could figure the rest out later. Maybe write her parents. She made a face and shuddered. The dratted honesty of paper. Maybe she owed it to them. She’d think about it when she stopped smelling so much like fish.
I’ve been robbed! The line ‘Everything smelled like fish.’ was stolen and I’ve found it popping up in the lairs of Legal Thieves. Look! They’re right here.