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Tips for Beating Finals Stress

By now, finals are probably right around the corner, which means you’re in high stress mode. Personally, I think I’ve been on edge for the past 3 days, and I don’t think it’s going to get better for another week. 301 more words

3 - The Task at Hand

“Ouch!” Lorien gasped and formed her hand into a fist. Drops of blood slipped out from her palm through her fingers. She held her hand close to her body and kept her back to her father, who was seated at a table in the center of the balcony. 885 more words


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3 – The Task at Hand

“Ouch!” Lorien gasped and formed her hand into a fist. Drops of blood slipped out from her palm through her fingers. She held her hand close to her body and kept her back to her father, who was seated at a table in the center of the balcony. “Lorien?” “It’s nothing.” The blood ran down her wrist. She grabbed the sleeve of her shirt with her left hand and pulled it over her wrist up to her fingers, grateful for the dark clothes of the Valdaren Guard she was uncharacteristically dressed in. Warm blood oozed from her hand down the arm of her shirt. The dark splotch on the sleeve grew, and she could feel thick blood pooling up to her elbow. Her hand throbbed. But where had the cut come from? Her eyes scanned the railing in front of her. She had been resting her hands on it only moments before, gazing out over the rushing waterfalls into the moonlit night that was to guide her journey. The marble was polished and smooth. “There was a sharp piece of rock loose on the banister. I caught it with my palm. It’s just a scratch. It is nothing.” Her father watched.  Lorien, keeping her back to him, glanced down at her fist. She pulled the sleeve back slightly. There was no blood. She opened her fist. There was nothing. Not even a scratch. She had felt the sharp pain. She had seen the blood. Even the stain of the shirt sleeve was gone.  She bit her lower lip, then forced a smile and turned to her father, holding her hand up for him to see. “See, it’s nothing. I just caught it on something. That’s all.” Still, he watched her. “It was nothing,” she insisted. He got up from his chair and walked to her. He took her hand in his own and studied it. He touched the spot where she had felt the cut and traced his finger down the middle of her palm. “It was nothing.” She tried to pull her hand away from him, but he held on, his finger still pressed to the spot she had felt the gash. He looked intently at her and grinned. He pushed her hand gently toward her chest and let go. “I’ve never known a little scratch to cause you to gasp.” “True, but this isn’t an ordinary night.” “Hmmmm…I’ve never known you to be jumpy whether the night was ordinary or not.” “I didn’t say I was jumpy.” “You gasped and grabbed your hand.” “I don’t know what it was, but there is nothing there now.” “What was there?” “Honestly, what does it matter?” “Lorien, there is a task at hand that requires YOUR hand, but I will not allow you to leave the Northern Realm unless you are honest with me.” Lorien forced a smile and held her palm up for him to see. “Do you see anything?” “No.” “Then there is nothing to tell.” “Lorien…” She looked away to avoid the piercing gaze of his blue eyes, but she could feel his probing. She bit her bottom lip, and shifted from one foot to another. “Fine…I felt a sharp piercing. I looked down, and it was bleeding…gushing blood. Then I looked down, and there was nothing.” He grabbed her hand again and held it palm up between his hands. He closed his eyes. Lorien relaxed. The strength and warmth of his hands had always reassured her. She was content to stand by him. She didn’t want him to let go. Without releasing her hand, he opened his eyes and looked deeply in hers. “A test,” he said quietly. “Well, that is lovely and nonspecific, Father.” He laughed. “I believe you have been the unwitting victim of a little Gat mischief. It is nothing serious.” “Yes, that is what I said…nothing.” She laughed, though she tried not to. “Honestly, I’m going to fix that Gat for good one of these days,” she protested. “He is always meddling…always!” “He means you no harm, Lorien. Quite the opposite.” “I know that, but…” He raised his hand to stop her and nodded his head. “Lorien, if I didn’t think you were ready, you would not be going anywhere. For all their magic and potions and knowledge, Gats are not Valdaren. They were neither Lightbearers nor Kings. To us were these tasks given, and we have always fulfilled them. The Gat sees a linear progression of life. He does not understand the swirling of the wind or the radiating of light. When the real test comes, what is inside of you will match it.” They both stood for a time, side-by-side, staring out into the forest of the Northern Realm just beyond the pools and river that collected below the waterfalls of the City of the Great King. On any other night, the two of them would have talked quietly and laughed, remembering stories of times passed or playing word games in a language only the two of them understood. He would challenge her and try to stump her. She would challenge back. They would make sport of words and strategies, ideas and plans, constructs of a brilliant mind and its singular off shoot. This night, for the remaining moments they had, they waited silently. ~ Chapter 3, The Task at Hand, from The Legend of the Lumenstones: The Lightbearer words and cover art © 2017 Tanya Cliff Posted in books & Legend of the Lumenstones. Bookmark the permalink. on sale now

Winter Time Means Cuddle Time

How to make your bed the coziest place on Earth.

After months of waiting, the winter holiday season is finally upon us. Boxes of winter clothes are being opened, forcing us to put away our tank tops, shorts and flip flops to make room in our closets for puffy jackets, chunky sweaters, and snow shoes. 823 more words

The Odyssey


Good morning, everyone.  Did you sleep well?

No?  Me neither.  I don’t now if it’s the springtime pollen in the air, or something I’ve eaten, or that I have something on my mind, but I’ve been having a tough time sleeping the last few days.  231 more words


Our Circle Blanket

Being a leader, you know very well how hard it is to get the girls to sit in a circle. I found this incredibly challenging with my Brownies, and even more difficult when I ask the Rainbows to sit or stand in a circle. 392 more words

Girl Guiding

A Finished Test

There’s nothing more satisfying than finishing up a test. That feeling of having finished combing the pattern for errors, and also creating something brand new… 292 more words


Corner to Corner Crochet (C2C)

It’s Tutorial Tuesday!!!

Corner to corner crochet, or C2C, has become very popular in the crochet community as of late. I love the diagonal design and the look of the little boxes created by the pattern, but I’ll admit I’ve been a little scared to try it. 343 more words