Chapter II: Foreboding Feelings
I watched from the window, as she made her way from Truce. She ran eagerly across the sturdy bridge between our island and the mainland.
It was my window. My window into the world. It was my eyes and ears, ever since the accident. I should never have tried to clean his machinery when he wasn't around.
My husband is an inventor. Some days, he's the talk of the town. On others, he's the laughing stalk. And though it's been years since the accident, I recognize the feeling I have now. It's that same intuition, a danger in the air. A danger I must have mistaken for dust, back then.
Crona was off the bridge and running through the grass, past the beautifully windswept trees. She's my son's best friend. A bit of a tomboy, though I wouldn't mind if they were more than friends. However, I get the impression that Crona's destined for greater things than this town. Her dazzling red hair, trailing from behind her bandana, and her wooden sword sheathed at her side, I know she's meant for more than this tiny little town.
I could hear the waves sloshing against the cove, and the harbour, in the distance. And then, I heard him enter our house. But nobody was there to greet him. I wished I could be, but I could not.
"Lucco! Lucco!" she called, hoping my son would run from the kitchen. Surely, he could see that the workshop was empty. "Lucco? Taban?"
I don't like the workshop. It's cluttered with books, vials and tools. And dust, lots of dust. And besides, it's where the accident happened. My accident.
And he had to be there, my little Lucco, to witness it. Right before his eyes, so many years ago. That's why I'm here, by the window, instead of welcoming Crona into our house.
I can hear her steps on the stairs, creaking that one step. Oh, how I wished that I could make it creak too.
"Crona, I'm in here, darling," I tell her, as I turn away from the window.
She walks down the stairs from Lucco's room, and up the opposite stairs into mine. There's a smile on her face, "Good morning, Lara."
I can tell, though, that my condition makes her uncomfortable. I can't even hobble over towards her and give her a new year's hug. Instead, I am a slave to this chair. "Taban and Lucco are off at Leene Square, unveiling Lucco's latest invention. I'm sorry, dear, they left early. I know you would have liked to go with them."
"That's all right," said Crona. "I'll make my way there soon. Once I clear my head a bit." She paused. "Can I carry you to the kitchen or even to the fair?"
That's right. I'm a cripple. It was a terrible accident, many years ago, and Taban wasn't there to stop it in time.
"No, but thanks for the offer. I'd rather watch from here. I'm... worried." That, and, I don't want to be anywhere near that invention when it gets put to use. I can feel trouble brewing in my gut.
"Very well. I'll be on my way then."
"Have fun, dear," I told her. "Give Gato a run for his money for me, all right?"
"Oh... you'll find out soon enough."
"Do you know what they were working on to unveil?"
"Yes, but you know I can't tell you that. It's not mine to spoil."
She smiled at me, the suspense building in her eyes. And I hoped, sincerely, that all would go well. Even though I knew they wouldn't.