I think eBay has finally managed to make of itself more of a hindrance than Spooky and I can tolerate. The final straw was this new business about requiring you to use their photo-uploading/hosting thingy, and charging 15¢ for every photo beyond the first one. Likely, we will hold one last auction sometime next week, the hand-corrected and "illuminated" copy of the Gauntlet hardback of Silk (which we've been meaning to auction since early March), and then part ways with eBay for good. I don't yet know what we'll be using instead. Spooky's taken with Etsy, but I'm not (and they don't seem to allow auctions, at any rate). Alas, eBay, we hardly knew ye.
Subscribers should have received Sirenia Digest #18 yesterday evening. Comments welcome.
I don't think I have the stomach for butchery today. Yesterday, I cut and hacked and spliced. Today, I may take a bath and wait for Byron, who's joining us for a Toho Kid Night. I do not often abuse the so-called "privilege" of being "my own boss," but today, I believe I shall make an exception. I'm tired of intentionally breaking things I worked so hard to build. It can wait until tomorrow or Sunday, this unwriting business. Spinning gold to straw. Well, no, not gold. Not even silver. I'm not quite that much of an egomaniac. But you get the picture.
I did not awaken until the sun was setting. Suregait was near, but there was no sign of Radagast. A dry wind was blowing through our rocky eyrie here at the southeastern end of the Mithrim Spur, and at first I did not recall the dreams that haunted my sleep. Would that they had never come back to me. I rose and started a small fire, and as I was brewing tea, Radagast returned, quickly shedding his hawk form and taking a seat across the fire from me. The news he brings is almost as dire as were my dreams. The man setsuled has gone to Seregost, and there are rumours among the grim folk of this land that he has sent word of my coming to the orc tribes encamped on Gorgoroth. Radagast believes that a bounty has been laid upon my head and that it would be suicide to try to reach the plateau. The orcs are hungry and easily bought. But there are darker tidings still. Radagast has been told by a raven that a call has gone out from Seregost to Khamûl, the Black Easterling, the last of the Nine, and that even now he stirs from out some secret pit. The elves of East Lórien believed such powers history, and that I would face only goblins and Uruks and such men as struggle to survive in these lands.
"The shadow has not entirely passed from our midst," Radagast said and frowned at the fire. "Perhaps it never shall."
He wants me to abandon the quest, Inwë. He says we can not proceed to Gorgoroth nor again try to make the pass below Seregost. All roads are watched now, and he does not imagine that I could ever reach those dread plains south of the Ash Mountains — not even with his aid. He wants to call Gwaihir, King of Birds, to bear me safely to the old capital at Osgiliath. He has volunteered to travel with Suregait, but I do not know. How do I turn back now? What the elves have done, might they now undo? This thing has been made a part of me, until I deliver it down into the Fen of Worms. If I turn back, another would only be forced to return in my stead, and the Black Easterling will surely begin to marshal an army, even if he has not guessed my purpose.
I have told Radagast my dreams, and they only made him more determined I should return to Gondor. But I do not know, Inwë. I do not know what course I must now take.
There was a Silk question from reverendcrofoot, who asks: I am re-reading Silk and I noticed something a character by the name Jen Dare I do believe. Is there anything else with this character? Is she a left over? Is there something up with her?
I never meant Jenny Dare for anything more than that one scene, a "ghost" to get Niki's attention. The character was, of course, inspired by Virginia Dare, the first child of English parents born in the Americas. She vanished with the rest of the "Lost Colony" at Roanoke. But really, I never meant to do more with her and never have.
* Han shot first.