Selkies' Skins will be a tale told serially, as I have the time to work on it. For now, updates may be spotty, but donations can help speed it up a little. I hope to at least manage an installment a month. I expect it to mostly center around Kirsten (Kirsty) and Etain, two part Selkies living in the modern era. The world is influenced by the Harry Potter novels in part, but also by Celtic mythology of Selkies. The main stories told will be Etain's work as a waterwitch, her work as a bridge between the Selkies of her area and Wizarding society, and Kirsty's own quest toward gaining her own seal skin.
Once the full story is down, an ebook version is planned. This story is unassociated with my Dragon Shaman series available in my Lulu outlet and on Amazon, or any of my unpublished manuscripts.
Land and Sea
The waves washed over the rocks of Seal Point, steadily lapping their way up over the tide pools. The breeze had the characteristic bite of the Northern Ireland sea air, and was filled with the cries of gulls and seals. Blue eyes gazed back toward the half empty dock, her mother's vessel, the Sea Witch, a wooden fishing vessel that Kirsty had no idea how old it really was, had been gone since a couple days after David's visit. Her father's vessel, the Cosantóir, similar in style and just as weathered, probably in need of debarnacling again, bobbed forlornly alone, with its mate out to sea.
Her lips thinned and pressed together, and the wind worked more on teasing her dark hair out of the braids she wore. Kirsty whispered softly, in the Gaelic that her ancestress had taken such great pains to instill, invoking the sea to grant her mother's journey safety and fair winds. Though she was underage as far as the magical community was concerned, she often circumvented the rule in this manner. The more that she learned in school, the more she found that using that particular language instead worked better for her.
Marsali's voice echoed in her head, grimly satisfied. "Rather difficult for the Ministry of Magic to regulate the magic of a Selkie or other beast or being that has not submitted to their tyranny, isn't it, a chailín mo chroí?" The Ministry was one of the few topics that always seemed to bring a bitter edge to the voice of the Selkie's painting, right along with detailed discussions about the loss of her sealskin, or the death of her human husband.
Hooves sounded behind her, striking rocks, and then muffled in the sand between, and several moments of picking their way down the beachfront resulted in Byron's whinny behind her.
"Kirsten, I've got the fire stoked up again, and the savory pie in the oven. I know you've got to be getting yourself into your school mindset, but the wounded Selkie needs your attention. Remember I'm bound and can no longer shift, or I'd do it myself to give you a bit more rest."
She turned around, to stroke the Kelpie's nose, nesting her forehead against the wet, green, slightly tacky muzzle. Byron's tail lashed disconsolately at a fly on his flank, whether it was there or not, the sand beneath him absorbing the water ever dripping from him. His pointed teeth bared a bit, the urge to eat whatever was distressing the daughter of his current mistress strong.
"You'd be out there with mom right now, if not for me?"
"Aye, but you'll need a ride to London, I can catch up to her once you're safely off and ensconced next to your friends." He paused, and sighed. "One day you might be out there with her, especially if you end up trying to find new things from the sea for your potions. For now though, you can't help her on her missions. You'll go to school and get trained in human magic too, then you'll be ready if she needs. And besides, you'll get to see David meanwhile, true, a chroí?"
Kirsty flushed at the mention of David. Byron chuckled a bit. "Ah, I remember when your mother was this age. Etain was just as shy about all things Finnol." He nudged her up toward the stone house, a flowering vine currently working its way up to arch the doorway, a protective measure installed again before her mother's departure. "How about I tell you one of your mother's adventures while you work?"
"I'd like that..."
Meanwhile, older blue eyes cut their gaze over the stormy sea. The past month's sail had brought more storms than usual on her voyages, almost as if the sea itself wanted to push her limits. Mara had been in a strange mood all summer, and Etain had had to deal with it. Between Mara of the Sea and the Lady of the Well she was always busy enough... but a waterwitch often found herself dealing with far more than she was ever given credit for in the Wizarding world.
For the time being, at least, she was still on course. Though she could not see the stars, she could feel them. Etain wasn't sure where she was off to this time anyway. The letter the owl had brought had contained one small vial of water, and only the instructions that it was urgent that she track down the source of it. With instructions like this, perhaps it made sense that her daughter preferred the idea of potion making. It was safer seeming on the surface...
Yet, she still remembered the day that Tommy Tuckin had accidentally put too much pomegranate juice in his potion. To this day he still had no eyebrows, and she still had yet to figure out how he'd added that instead of toad blood when vials had been so clearly marked. She tried imagining the same sort of accident happening to Kirsty, but simply couldn't. Far too careful, and even more so was the young man that had become so close to her daughter.
Thunder boomed and rolled, the sky opening up shortly after, yet again pouring down cold rains to run off the deck.
"It couldn't have been a well spirit giving birth to a spring stuck the wrong way, or something else equally land bound..." Her gaze went to the vial of water clamped where she could check it near the helm, eyes widening as it began to glow a vivid blue. "At least I'm getting closer..."
Suddenly, something tingled at the edges of her senses. A chill ran down her spine, and the amulet hanging around her neck began to heat up, waking after several years of sleep.
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