Wednesday, September 09, 2009
One of those days...
It actually started a couple days ago, when I noticed that Zaphod's nose was swollen on one side. I told Russ, and he looked it over via Skype (that video stuff has really helped) and decided we better be safe and get him to the vet. That was set up for about 4:30 pm today. A friend agreed to come over and drive me there. (Don't worry -- Z is mostly fine!)
I woke up early with a horrible sore throat and stuffed up nose. I took stuff and went back to sleep. Woke up later feeling much better. Got up out of bed -- and realized my back had gone out big time over the last few hours. I could barely take a step forward. I could not lean over at all. Massive problem since I had to grab the nearly twenty pound cat and stuff him into a small purse-like carrier. I waited until about ten minutes before the ride was going to show up, and then the two of us went out to the porch. Waited a few more minutes with the bag sitting there -- he'd figured out what it was for by then. Finally grabbed him up in a towel, shoved him in and zipped it shut. It worked great. Got him out to the car. And off to the vet we went. Zaphod has an ulcerated sore on his nose. It should clear up and he had a shot for infection. He's doing fine -- sitting right here in front of me, in fact. Z actually loves car rides, so on the way home I let him stick his head out. He never made a noise the entire trip. The friend was really impressed with how well behaved he is. And he purred the entire time he was in with the vet. This is a great cat.
And... I had them stop at the Taco Bell on the way home. Heaven! Taco Bell is my 'fun' food, and because Russ isn't here, I rarely get it. That made me feel much better.
Except for the back which is still out. I can barely even sit here right now, though that's still better than standing and walking. Ugh. This happens every now and then, and I know I'll survive it, but it is horribly painful at the moment.
I had to take the trash out to the street. That was pretty miserable, too -- not made any better by the number of bugs. I couldn't have been out more than five minutes, and I still have six bites. This is so annoying -- the mosquitoes have been so horrible this year that I can barely go outside most of the time. I even use spray to keep them off and it does nothing. They've always been enthusiastically drawn to me.
So, really, it's been an up and down day. Glad Zaphod is good. Wish my back would settle back into place.
The Servant Girl snippet:
Shouts rose louder and the rush of people -- all colors and movement -- spread around her once more. The wall proved to be unsafe when she found herself almost crushed behind a line of fighting men who didn't care if they pushed her against the stones. She charged out, shoving one man into another, and then ducking down as someone swung at her.
The scream of a terrified child drew her off to the left. She shoved people aside and heard a woman calling a name somewhere else. The child screamed for his mother --
She found the boy first and grabbed him up, holding him close and trying to find some way to get him to safety. He sobbed against her shoulder, but when the woman yelled -- somewhere near by -- the boy lifted his head again. The woman seemed to be not far away. Trevor, on the horse, was close as well and seemed to clear some of the way. The woman appeared and gladly took the child into her arms. She looked frantically around --
"Arkin! Arkin! Help me get Davey out of here!"
A huge man moved up beside them, and the woman sheltered beside them. Beth tried to move along with the two as well, but within a half dozen steps the crowd surged back around her and a blow sent her sprawling. She held to the basket and scrambled back up, ducking between yelling men --
She found a clear spot and stood again, turning frantically to find the next path out. The best way seemed to the right. She jostled her way through with yells of her own -- as though she had caught the anger, as well now. Push through -- push through. Someone knocked her down again. She fell and pulled the basket to her chest as she tried to get back up. She didn't make it before the people began to yell and charge in around her --
She began to call the magic up, too frightened not to use it for protection.
"Get out of the way! Get away from her!"
People moved away from her in haste. She saw the horse first, and then Trevor came through, sword in hand, and leading his horse.
"Get away from her, I said!" he shouted and lifted the sword again. People backed away in haste.
It took Beth several heartbeats to realize he had come to help her. The shock almost made her freeze, but she finally got to her feet again.
"Thank you ... sir," she said. She couldn't bring herself to call him by name.
"I saw you help that child, and then go down. Come on, then." He waved to the horse. "Can you ride? I'll get you out of this mess."
"I can, sir," she said and limped forward, basket still in hand. The trouble was falling in behind them again, growing louder. "I'm going to the castle."
"Good." He transferred the sword to the same hand that he held the reigns and offered a hand to help her up. "Hold on tight. I'll try to go slow. Side-saddled --"
"Safety is more important," she said and pushed herself up by the stirrup and a leg over the saddle -- unladylike, but she wanted out of here. "Be quick. Don't take chances."
He blinked, trying very hard not to look at her leg, uncovered almost to the knee. She blushed.
And he swept off his cloak and threw it up over the front of the saddle, mostly covering her legs.
He nodded and started leading the horse away.
She thought he looked very dangerous, the young man leading the fidgeting horse and using his sword to flat-blade people when they didn't get out of the way. Only one burly man tried to stand his place, holding an old battered sword of his own. Trevor didn't have any trouble disarming him, and the man retreated very quickly.
They had left most of the riot behind by the time they reached the fountains. Trevor led the horse at a quick trot to the gate where people already prepared to go out.
"Good to see you home, even if trouble always follows you, Trev," one of the men said, slapping him on the shoulder. He looked up at Beth on the horse and shook his head. "And you --"
Beth carefully slid back off the horse, handing the cloak back to Trevor with a nod of thanks. She still held the basket tight in her hands and looked up in time to see Captain Darva coming at a quick trot, her own troop forming up behind her.
"We're going to stop letting you out of the castle, Beth," Darva said with a shake of her head and a slight smile.
"I hope so," she said with an emphatic nod.
"Trevor." Darva looked at him, blinked and smiled. "Good to see you home."
"Thank you, Captain," he said, but glanced at Beth again. "I better go report to Terrance and tell him what I saw out there. Don't worry -- it looked to me to be nothing more than locals. I'll see you later."
Beth couldn't tell if he meant those words for her or Darva. From the look on the Captain's face, neither did she.
They both watched Trevor walk away, and then Darva looked back at Beth with a sigh. "You had better tell me what happened."
"He just came through the crowd and found me, that's all. He offered to help me out --"
"Not with Trevor," she said and laughed again. Beth felt her face flush. "Tell me what you saw happening out there."
"Oh." She swallowed her embarrassment and glanced at the gate where one group of soldiers were already heading out. "I think it was a disagreement at one of the food stalls, and it just suddenly ... grew. It was like people felt the anger in the air and started arguing everywhere. It was horrible."