Happy Tuesday, readers. Today I have the pleasure of introducing to you Stori, Companion to Hope Hunter in Caiti Marie’s (who happens to be my awesome sister) episodic Saturday Stori.
Hello, Stori! Welcome to Red Lettering. I’m honored that you were willing to answer some questions. I know you’re very busy–something about saving the world?–so I’ll make it brief.
To start with, could you tell us a bit about yourself?
Stori: *stills, staring into space as she considers the question, then gives a quick laugh* I’m sorry. I don’t introduce myself very often. My name… *forehead wrinkles* You know my name. Well… *quiets for a moment* I was born in Rivervale. You’ve probably not heard of it— It was a tiny village nestled in the South of the Liliwhit Mountains. I am Companion to Hope Hunter, a girl from earth I met a little over eleven years ago.
Actually, I have heard of Rivervale, though only brief mentions. I do know your name. Which brings me to my next question. Your name is a bit unusual… Was it your given name?
Stori: Of course it was. *laughs* Not given by my parents, though. Names… Names are special things where I come from. *lowering her voice, she shifts her gaze to the floor* I have had several. I have traveled many worlds, and collected many mistakes and names to go with them. When, by the grace of God, I was reborn, I was given a new name— A name to help me remember that He is writing my story, and that even when things get dark, I am promised an eventual happy ending. *murmurs* And things get pretty dark sometimes.
Names are special things here, though few know of their importance. You mentioned before that you’re a Companion, but while most of us might have had some experience with Companions, most of us are uncertain about what exactly a Companion is. Could you clarify about that?
Stori: *quietly* A Companion is a servant. We are born to serve and to die. *shakes her head* Not everyone chooses to, but at the heart of it, that is our purpose. We have some… Some… abilities that you do not. *touches her temple* Our abilities are usually reflected in our eyes. Dark blue irises with pale blue pupils, like mine, indicate the ability to control water. Jed— He is a friend of mine— Has green eyes and red pupils. The red pupils indicate that he can control fire. I’m trying to put it in a way you would understand… We would say he is fire, because it is his very nature, though it costs him dearly to control it. Another difference… *lifts the crystal hanging on a chain around her neck* Every Companion has two of these. One we always wear, because to be separated from it is death. The other… *dropping the crystal, sweeps a strand of hair off her face* The other we call the Twin, and it is given to the person we wish to serve until death. I gave mine to Hope. Some people choose to keep their Twin for the power and security it lends them. *curls her fingers into a fist* I should not judge them.
I see. I wonder if it might be slightly ironic; for you to be water, and he to be fire. I may know the answer to this question already, but…is there anyone you would die to save?
Stori: Hope. There are others, of course— I would die to save anyone who needed me to. But Hope. I would die to save Hope without a heartbeat’s thought.
Hope was the person I suspected, with your explanation of Companions, and your saying that you were Hope’s Companion. Opposite of the previous question, do you have anyone you would consider a personal enemy?
Stori: Personal? No. There are a good many people I am not on pleasant terms with, but most of the people who had reason to hate me died a long time ago. Though there is one person… *she looks up, her voice hardening, the skin around her eyes tightening* There is one person I can say I despise. Her name is Tamal. She is… *rubs her hands across her arms as though wiping away filth* I’ll let you think of the words.
I’m afraid I can think of the words; Tamal and I have had indirect run-ins in the past, and she is not, shall we say, my favorite person around. …What do you fear?
Stori: The past. I fear the past repeating itself.
I see. Do you have a family? Where are they now?
Stori: *after a long moment, draws in a slow breath through her nose* I had a family, once. More years ago than I can guess, both my parents were killed in a raid that destroyed Rivervale. I remember very little of their lives. After that, it was only my brother Ivon and I… Now it is only me. My brother is dead. *quieter* He is.
I’m sorry to hear that. I don’t know whether to tell you an overused phrase that’s tossed around far to frequently, or if I should tell you that not everything is always as clear as it seems. What is the first thing you remember?
Stori: *starts a bit* Oh, my. *with a laugh* That’s a difficult question. I’m not quite as young as I look. My first memory… *pause* I remember my father’s beard. Only that: His beard, which swallowed up his Crystal. I suppose my earliest real memory was playing in the mud with Ivon. He was making mud pies, which I tried to eat… I must have been two or three. Have you ever tasted mud pies? I remember the taste so clearly. It’s not true what they say about dirt having no taste; it did. It tasted of salt, and… and… I don’t know what. Ivon was kind enough to laugh at my expression, so I… *chuckles* I put a mud pie on his head. I don’t remember how it went from there, only that we were covered in mud before we had done. *silent for a moment, lost in memory; then she turns* I had not thought of that in years longer than you can know. Thank you.
Oh. *snickers* No… Thank you. It must be such a special memory. Thank you for sharing it with us. Do you have a favorite season?
Stori: No. I have seen many seasons in many worlds, and they all run together. I have no favorites.
Now that I think about it, I’m aware that you’ve traveled many worlds, so that might not have been the perfect question to ask, seeing as how different the same seasons can be in the different worlds. I suppose I should let you go now… But thank you so much for being here. I really appreciate you agreeing to spend time with us today.
Stori: Thank you for inviting me. *scowls* It was worth it just to get away from certain company. I’d like to avoid committing murder, however justified.
To avoid becoming part of a debate (where we would undoubtedly take the same position) I’ll just nod and let you go. Thank you so much for being here. I hope the next few months go well for you.
Many thanks to Caiti Marie for allowing me to interview Stori, particularly since I was late this week and gave her such short notice. Saturday Stori can be read on Caiti’s blog, Blossoms and Thorns, where you can also find more about her, her writing, and her life. Also, on the Writing Prompt for March Sixth, she commented with a section from Stori’s past.