For most of September and October, I was doing character interviews with the main cast of this year’s NaNo novel, Inside the Jump. Nonetheless, I was surprised at how lively they were once I started writing. So, without further ado, two cousins meet again after a long time.
Martisset put her bowl down, and pushed it to the center of the table.
Hernan had a third serving, after Jehen made the traditional threefold offer. “Any cook would be well-pleased with you, cousin,” Martisset said, “but this is a starship, so eating them out of house and home isn’t an option.”
“I’m still catching up,” Hernan said. “We ran out of food the second day in the cargo pods. Fortunately it was warm enough in there, and there was enough air if we didn’t move around too much …” The rest of his comment trailed off in a hum of satisfaction, as he spooned the last of the stew into his mouth. He washed it down with the Sarronny beer, wiped his mouth with the napkin, and only then pushed the bowl away.
“So is there anything else you want to know about our adventures?”
“Well, I think I might like to meet Taryn,” Martisset said, and glanced at Jehen. “Provided that it can be arranged in a way that doesn’t rouse suspicion.”
“No need for her to cross through the ship’s Commons, if that’s what you mean,” Jehen said. “The Quartermaster will see to it.”
This time it was the real Akiko Miss-Naught who escorted Taryn the Outlander to Martisset’s quarters.
“Sometimes you’re real, and sometimes you’re a ghost,” Taryn said to the Quartermaster as she walked in.
“That’s the way of things, on Ships,” Akiko said.
“Well, you’re a great deal more sanguine about it than I am, but then you’d know if you were real or a ghost, wouldn’t you?”
“Most of the time. Though there are the odd times, when you just can’t wake up — you know the ones — or you’re falling asleep. Ah, we’re here now. The Captain will see you.”
Taryn strode through the doorway, straight to Martisset.
“I’m Taryn, and you must be Martisset,” she said. “Not sure, do you folk bow or shake hands?”
Martisset stood, and made a clipped bow in her direction by way of reply. Taryn imitated her, then looked up. She stood about as tall as Jehen, and so a head shorter than Martisset. “Yes, I see the resemblance. Handsome family you have.”
“Most don’t see the least resemblance,” Martisset said.
“Oh no, it’s plain in the bones. And the character as well, from the stories Hernan tells of you. And the other one, the Evil Uncle, but that’s character of another sort. Bad, but definite. A person likes to know what she’s dealing with.” She said, “Your cousin is a delightful traveling companion, I must say.”
Martisset raised an eyebrow, and said, “Hernan says you’re getting married.”