Monday, August 9, 2010

Changes Blogfest Entry

  Thank you again for Elizabeth Mueller for hosting this "Changes" Blogfest. I have another entry over at my alter ego, Scott Noir's lair.

In this scene, from the second installment of the trilogy,  Caenus and Kalliste have both been changed by love.

 ***
Iolkosians filled the streets along the waterfront in celebration as the ships pulled into the inner harbor. Caenus, donning his royal raiment and Kalliste in her white silk robes with crimson trim, stepped into their wedding chariot again and paraded through the stone-paved streets, weaving through each of the grids. As the betrothed serpentined through the crowd, onlookers and well-wishers threw confetti and shouted blessings of prosperity, in some cases, impeding the horses’ progress. Caenus did not mind the frequent stops, however, because these were all his friends and family… and most importantly, Kalliste’s extended family now. In return, the happy couple waved warmly.
            Grasping Kalliste’s hand tightly, feeling the tingle of new love’s warmth emanating through her palm, Caenus reveled in the glory his new bride afforded him. He radiated from within, feeling sweetly suspended in a euphoric state, illuminated by the goddess who stood beside him.  His bride’s beauty stole his breath every time he turned to look at her along the ride.
            And for her part, Kalliste felt as if she had joined her mate of a previous life… as if the gods had somehow placed her back within the land of the living to once again experience all of life’s pleasures. She was not certain of how she could feel so strongly for someone she had known so briefly. From Corinth to this moment had been a whirlwind, sweeping all involved into a pleasant summer’s storm of pain-balanced pleasure.  For, the pain of being forced to marry someone unworthy of her heart’s blessings… and having that ordeal end tragically… only to then fall for the one who felled the man she was to wed… to then nearly perish, herself… and to find out that her truest love nearly perished as well… all the way to the immense pleasure that anticipation affords…  the sweet anticipation of marriage to her truest love… the pleasures of exploration both the night following the wedding and the day after… and the night yet to come… and many more nights to come… Caenus mirrored his bride’s emotions in so many ways, having experienced his own storm of sorts… having been right there beside his sweet girl for much of it all.
            Later in the evening, Helios’ chariot had driven its light below the western horizon as Mount Pelion shadowed the first night back in Iolkos.  After visiting the sanctuary within the palace to receive continued blessings from the gods, Caenus and Kalliste walked to the private bathhouse.
            Once the servants had heated the water sufficiently, Caenus banished them.  Kalliste sat on a marble bench a few feet away from the bath and began to remove her sandals. Caenus walked over and knelt in front of her.  He ran his fingers through her flame-red tresses, looking into her eyes and becoming lost once again… lost in the moment between divinity and mortality… lost in the moment between whether the mind registers pain or pleasure… lost in the moment between lightning and its accompanying thunder.
            He unpinned her chiton and slowly removed her silk robes, laying the finely constructed garments on the smooth marble beside her.  He then allowed her to disrobe him, his cloak hitting the floor in a heap. Hand-in-hand they descended the stairs into the in-ground bath.
            “How is it that I have been so blessed?” Kalliste cooed, running her hands over Caenus’ muscular shoulders and arms.
            “Are you the only one so blessed, my sweet?” Caenus responded, with a wink.

            “It is amazing, is it not? How the gods guided us together across this great pond we call the Aegean… how we fit together so tightly as puzzle pieces.  I press my heart against yours, chest-to-chest now… do they not beat in unison? Do you not feel that? How peculiar a sensation that is?”
            “Neither the muses nor the fates could ever have written the intertwining of our lives any better,” Caenus responded. “But, let us be careful not to squander this moment with the words created by mortals to describe this event conjured by the gods. For it is, you know… tonight, and every other night that I can embrace you, is a night afforded us by the gods.”