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DIARIE OF A MANNE AMONG ROCKE: The Annals of William Dewey

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It's through the generosity of my liege King George that I can stake my claim in the colony of Delmarva. But, it is through the generosity of the Lady General Rose Quartz that the settlement of Beach City is allowed to continue.

After our rescue, the ladies have, for the most part, avoided us. The strangest of them, the child Amethyst, has been found rummaging around in the men's quarters or following them at their work, but the Negress-- who must be her minder-- always takes her away before much conversation can be had. (Though, I doubt much could be had either way; the girl is barely more than feral, at best. The men say they have seen her take the form of beasts. After all I have seen myself, I believe them with all my heart.)

Though we have searched, there are no Indian tribes to be found for miles, though the land is good, better than good. It worries me.

We begin clearing land for a more permanent settlement in the morning. I pray their current lack of interference continues...


The spyglass suddenly filled with blue, and, for a moment, William wondered if he'd accidentally fallen off the ledge and was looking at the sky.


Until, startled, he fell backward onto the meadow grass, and then he truly was looking up at the sky.

A pale, angular face appeared in his vision-- ah, the Lady Pearl. He should've known that they would involve themselves the moment the first tree fell. But, even though he'd been preparing himself for the confrontation, he still wasn't ready for it.

"Just what do you think you're doing?" she asked. It frightened him, her tone, but he caught site of Rose just a short distance away, and that calmed him. As long as the General stayed within earshot, she wouldn't be overly cruel.

... Hopefully.

"We're clearing land for what will eventually be the township of Beach City!" he said. Scared as he was, pride still filled his voice. He had waited all his life to make such a mark on the world, and he wasn't ready to let the strangeness of the land stop that. "We--"

"You're destroying the Earth, is what you're doing." She narrowed her eyes. "You've been getting by just fine with what you have. You don't need to go around making a mess for no good reason."

He threw his hands up in the air-- accidentally sending his spyglass off into the distance. "We've been living in tents for months!" he said, praying that his voice didn't really have the whine his own ears heard. "If we plan on living here permanently--"

"Which is still a matter up for consideration," Pearl said coolly.

"-- we'll need something a bit more, ah." His hands dropped impotently to his sides. "Permanent."

There was a sound like bells, the unmistakable melody of a woman's laughter, and the both of them turned around sharply.

Rose was surrounded by a gaggle of awed young men, while a particularly bold one instructed her on how to properly hit a nail. As she drove it deep into the wood, the child laughed shrilly at her feet and clambered onto the nearest man, chatting and making for his tools. The, er... other just stood by silently, though William swore he could make out a smile in the distance.

Of all things, Pearl growled.

She started off in a huff, leaving a stunned William behind. When she reached the group, a loud conversation started-- he still wasn't sure Rose was capable of argument, or rather that others were capable of arguing with her-- and his men scattered to safety. They knew better, even after such a short time, than to involve themselves.

Soon, the voices quieted, and the Lady General led her strange army over towards him. Pearl looked sullen, which he took as a sign of good fortune. Rose Quartz, towering high above him, gently placed the hammer in his hands, grasping them in her own.

"I can't wait to see what you'll build," she said, a beatific smile on her face.

And that was all she said; she turned and left for her temple, the others following at her heels. He waited until they were gone, then gasped a deep breath; he wasn't sure how long he'd been holding it. Then, he went off to find his spyglass.

(It had shattered against a tree. Just his luck.)