1st Day – What to do – 1st draft – The Unicorn Rider: Virgins, Unicorns & The Dead
Author Note: (Sensual warning) A work in progress. Still looking at exact location names to place within the chapter. Possibly to help those readers who want to see with their own eyes where this is taking place. What or where this village is? Try the older part of Natchez, Mississippi near the park across from the Natchez Grand Hotel over looking the Mississippi River. AND Oh, yes, Candice does have some peculiar habits. She isn’t exactly what she appears to be… unless you think she is just over the top sensitive to her personal needs… as people in general think most young women are? She is very bright, very caring and very sensual. These characteristics will all fit in later, or actually be very necessary. So let’s start this first chapter… did you read “The Prologue”? If you didn’t, get on it… or you will most certainly miss out. ~ Anna Le Doux ~ https://twobluewings.com/
1st Day – What to do | The Unicorn Rider: Virgins, Unicorns & The Dead
Toni ran his hand through the shock of stiff black hair on the top of his head. He then took his place standing with muscular arms folded across his broad chest looking up the street through one of the oversized windows that framed the old glassed paned oak door that was the entrance to the jazz club. He knew when Candice would be making her way to the club in the afternoons. This afternoon there were two figures in the distance instead of the one. “Well I hope it’s a friend, she has been pretty focused on school recently.” he said to himself as he thought out loud. As the two people came into range for a closer inspection Toni’s mood changed. He squinted harder to see, before he would have to be concealing himself from his place at the windows. “That guy does not figure into all of this.” Toni grunted to himself as he rubbed his large weathered hands together.
Candice was soon pushing on the front door. With the apparent jingle of the brass spring bell atop the door to announce her entrance into the old long building. Candice made her way to the back of the club to find a table to set up for her study session. She knew Toni must be somewhere in the building music playing with the door open out front.
Toni came from the direction of the bar with a white plastic bucket and a large wet white towel. He began wiping down the tables farthest from Candice, while nodding a greeting toward her.
“It’s not what it always seems,” said Toni.
Candice knew Toni to wax philosophical, when he was puttering around the club. He would make grand statements, that wouldn’t make much sense at the time.
“There is always a reason for things happening,” Toni went on. “You have that old house now and you like it. You’re going to school and you are planning to travel because of your courses. It is all for a reason. So make the most of it. Don’t over think it Candice.”
“I just don’t want to miss an opportunity Toni. But things are changing so fast, I just don’t want to make a wrong decision. I didn’t know how big of a deal it would be to have my own place,” Candice said watching Toni work.
Toni continued to wipe down the table tops around the room, then ducked into the back kitchen entrance. Candice had always enjoyed his wandering conversations and she knew he maybe back to finish this one.
After sitting for a while; it had been some time, since she last saw anyone; she felt alone. It was either too early or too late for customers. She had been focused on the college course work she had placed over her lap seated in the back of the building where the music wasn’t as loud. It is hard to say what time it was, since Candice looked down and found her watch was broken. And she was unsure as to whether the old clock on the back wall ticking told the actual time. The candle on the table sitting on the chipped saucer had been melting at a slow even rate. Candice would frequently look up from her work breaking her concentration, to see the decreasing size of the candle with its constant slow drips flowing down its sides.
That cigarette left awhile back at a table near by was casting its last long spirals of smoke into the air from its once firm foundation at rest upon a tin ashtray. The man that had left the cigarette had ignored her and sipped his cool beer. Candice had ignored him too, not wanting a repeat of last summer when she encountered a guy who had come in for a deli sandwich and something cool to drink. He seemed nice enough. She took his order as she was helping out Toni in the Le Vieux Jazz Club that afternoon. After serving the sandwich and another beer that man wanted to talk as she stood by his table in the back of the club. He then grasped the calf of her bare left leg as he talked. He slid his hand in a familiar way behind her knee. She felt the move should have stopped there, but the hand’s movement continued an upward twisting path pausing at her inner thigh. Candice knew where the hand was going and her body had been responding to the anticipated touching of her moistening cleft. Candice stepped away ending the tease she sensed was coming. Now distracting herself from the day dream; with a firmer grasp of her pen and a puff of air exhaled upward toward a tailing strand of blond hair on her forehead; she was resolved to get her course paper done.
Candice again found it hard to focus on her book. She wanted to be out taking a walk. She looked upon the flickering flame of the candle thinking about the sunlight out side the building this time of day. She closed her eyes imagining the sky so blue with distant white clouds. She could actually smell off in the vision of the sky’s clear air the scent of white jasmine. Candice’s eyes popped open; as if jarred out of her day dream with the disappearance of the scent; her eyes falling back on the pages of her text book. She rearranged her bottom in the chair, she felt a warmth between her legs, that had gone unnoticed before now. It was a warm evening, so she told herself as she pushed her day dreaming back to where it would not distract her studies.
Candice felt she had studied long enough with the accomplishment of most of her analysis paper. She was glad to pack up and start for home.
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Home was a large three story stone and wood beam structure that her grandmother told her would be her responsibility once Candice turned 21. Most of a small village block was occupied by this house with two other smaller one story buildings wedged in on the front corners. These two boarded up smaller structures had served as storage for the main house. The one entrance into the house was at the end of the alley way formed by these two abandoned storage buildings. The main house had many small rooms, but the basement was one large room intersected by a number of wood beam and brick pillars upon a slate floor that bore the weight of the house along with the deep stone walled foundation. There was also a spring fed well in the northern corner of the basement. The house was very old but in good condition.
Her grandmother had never been specific as to how she had gotten the place, just that it had been in the family’s holdings without documentation of when it had been first purchased or any history about the land it sat upon. Only the obvious had been known about the house and that it had been a building that had always been part of this old port village near the mouth of the river that emptied into the gulf.
As a child Candice had never visited the place, but had been passed it on the way to the river from her parent’s place in the country before their deaths when she was about 7 years of age. Her grandmother had raised her farther out of town in a place located along a paved main road, so they never had to come into the village. Grandmother Berisha brought her to the house on her 21st birthday and gave her a round iron keyring with six old skeleton keys and showed her how the key to the front door worked. Grandmother even brought with them a bottle of Portuguese Reserve 1975 Offley Port Wine giving a glass to Candice, a glass for herself and a glass that Grandmother said was for the house. She was not sure what had been done with the third glass of this sweet red wine. Candice had been looking forward to this day of having her own place, but had not thought much beyond that with any plans.
Having always been interested in mythology, Candice had attended a college near her Grandmother’s home. Each day her Grandmother would drive her into classes in that old dark green Volkswagen Karmann Ghia. Now Candice took her graduate courses on line using the Jazz Club’s wireless internet on her Mac.
Candice did not have a car of her own, since she did not feel the need right now to be far from home. Toni and her Grandmother would drive her around. She felt comfortable in her home and if she did have to leave she thought that she would make a proper trip of it either by train or a flight. She did have an old bike. She also owned a pirogue; a sort of Cajun canoe. She had this pirogue, since she was a child, that she used out in the backwater near her Grandmother’s place. Horses were also her favorite, since her Grandmother raised a few gray and tan dapple Morgans for riding and cart. She had thought about having a horse here using one of the smaller storage buildings to house it. There was a history of using these attached buildings as a small stable, but not for a long time back.
Candice thought so much could happen at her place with time. She had so much history here and so much to do. But for now her graduate degree work had to be her focus.
Candice pulled together her things, while attempting to place all that would possibly fit into the backpack. Checking once again that she had her power cord in her pack she slugged the backpack on to her back, while shouldering her small purse strap. Before lifting the books she pulled on the hem of her skirt to cover her supple buttocks more completely. Then filling her arms with books she started for the front door of the jazz club.
“Hey Candice, when you coming back? Are you still planning that trip out west?”, said Toni from behind the large well polished dark mahogany bar at the front of the building.
“I don’t know yet when I will need you to take me to the Brookhaven train station. I have not heard back recently from Yvette Wong in San Francisco. And anyway I am still saving up a bit for the trip.” Candice said, smiling at Toni and understanding what he really was meaning to say.
“You can pick up some hours here if you want and bring your studies along. I don’t want anything to stop your studying,” Toni said as he rung out the white towel under the stream of water of the bar faucet.
“Yes I know,” Candice said smiling while balancing all her books and backpack.
“Will your friend be walking you back home now?” Toni said as he continued to busy himself at the bar.
“No,” Candice said, trying to place who Toni was talking about. “Oh you mean the man who was helping me with my books earlier? That was a possible customer for my business. He was asking questions and wanted to know more about it before committing to a contract for his business. You know I have six other clients from the village, but Mr. Whybow will be my first from out of town.”
Toni tried not to appear to react to the mention of the well known last name. “Well good to hear your advertising is paying off,” said Toni finishing up what he had been doing with the towel. “If you need any help with people, you know you can ask me right out.”
Toni came out from around the bar and held open the entry door for Candice. The brilliance of the day took sometime for her eyes to adjust to as she started up the sidewalk toward home.
Once Candice appeared to have made her way up the street some distance; Toni turned from his place at the large window to face the long mahogany bar. The glare of the sun lit street was a blaze reflected in the large mirror behind the bar. The mirror covered the entire wall behind the bar above the shelves lined with liquors. Toni gazed steadily into the glare with his right hand raised straight ahead of him palm out toward the mirror‘s surface. He knew the right questions making whispered recitations as he directed his sight using the elements locked in the old glass and the silvered lining that held the ancient mirrored surface. He had no time for vessels with water to accomplish the answering of his questions through cattabomancy, that the mirror would have to perform. He wanted to use the newness of recent moments to fuel an explanation of what had just happened for Candice and would happen to him as his part in this work. He saw covering the whole of the wide surface of the mirror a familiar white light. He could actually feel the heat effect of the light upon the palm of his hand. Suddenly this living light was sliced by a shadow form of darkness that made him physically cold deep into the bones of his right arm. Now blue as a hot flame the light in the mirrored panorama pulled free of the darkness. This light retracted into the form of a person, who began pushing back the groping cold darkness with each movement of a hand or kick of a foot. The darkness pulled apart into distinct small powerful pieces with each blow of the person of light. His question answered before the now faltering mirrored image faded. “I have got to be there. This new customer of hers has started something and opened the door,” Toni whispered, as he turned back to the window, while looking blankly out into the evening light of the street still affected by what he had just witnessed. A slight breath of wind on the back of his neck, being the only remains of the powerful image.
Photo | I took on the trip to Natchez, Mississippi to research for The Unicorn Rider: Book I