Posted by: jolantru | April 8, 2012

Path Of Kindness: Twelve

I grip the handle of the knife blade. Hilt. They call it a hilt. It tastes like wood, solidness. The blade shines, crystal-bright against its edges. Cleaned, it looks better. More honorable. A proper weapon.

In the chill air of the Innerlands, I practise, letting my body get used to its weight, its heft. After twenty strokes, my right arm hurts and blisters bubble up on my palm.

What would Mother think of this new Kindness? This wannabe warrior?


I savor the word and continue slashing the air.


I picked spilled rice from some caravan, carefully scooping up the white grains into a pouch made out of my blanket. Somewhere on my person hangs a pot I’d found floating down a small stream. It is not that rusty and I store water with it.

I am still very hungry. Boiled rice water will have to do now.

There are edible leaves growing on the slopes. This far into the Innerlands, I am glad there is still food, of sorts.


Wandering down the slope, picking the tiny purslane-like leaves, I hear something. It sounds like a mewing kitten. I follow the sound. The wind is getting colder. Innerlands weather moves from warm to cold rapidly.

The source of the mewing comes from a bundle of soft white cloth. I kneel down and poke the bundle. The mew becomes a wail.

With a shock, I know that it is no hungry kitten. It is a baby.

She – I checked – gazes up at me with blue eyes. An Innerlands baby. Abandoned on the slope of an unnamed hill. She looks about two months old, her tiny hands automatically reaching up, her face scrunched up.

I can’t leave a baby out here.

I have no milk, only watery gruel. She needs milk. I only have rice salvaged from a passing caravan. My heart sinks. Not enough. Not enough.

Very carefully, I lift the bundle up and cradle the baby. She is light but warm. She will not last long out here.

She starts sucking at my breast hungrily.


The little baby with the blue eyes is now Heart.

Heart tastes like dragonbeard candy from the festival store. Sweet. A little ephemeral, melting away.

She is still very hungry. And smelly. I keep changing her with strips of cloth and clean water.


I manage to coax milk out of my body. It is all very strange. My nipples tingle, turn a darker color and begin to ooze white milk. I am not even sure this is possible. Am I that strange?

Heart is drinking though and deeply. I can feel her gums against the breast as she sucks.

I find it hard to feel angry at Heart.

But food is running out and Heart is always hungry.



  1. […] Path Of Kindness: Twelve: Kindness discovers Heart and finds joy in the blade. If you enjoy Path Of Kindness, please do signal boost, talk about it. […]

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