The cold halls of stone that made up the infirmary were like a second home to Vera, who had grown accustomed to the darkness as she felt her way around from dark spot to light spot, snuffing out candles to preserve the wax for operation during the day. There were only in-patients left, and there were very few of those due to some stroke of luck, and verily she had the place to herself practically, her own little madhouse. The other doctors, and even the nurses had since left to some kind of party save for one which Vera suspected was on the other side of the building tending to these in-patients. Vera was delighted at the invitation, but she knew full well that her paperwork had been piling up, calling to her with the many long hours of their resolution as a sort of cruel and twisted bait.
What was this feeling of elation as she pinched out the candlelight outside the door to her office, changing the paradigm of her senses? Happiness could truly be found in change, but as could tragedy. The two were intertwined in this inscrutable fact, and the cause and effect perplexed her. Her mind was always swarming with thoughts and ideas, even more so when she was alone with it as her dark passenger. To her, she thought, the mind was a strange thing, a puzzle box of mysteries teeming with threads waiting to be pulled, that when tugged firmly unravel to show a piece of the puzzle, only to present another puzzle to solve to which that piece does not fit.
Twisting the knob to her office - it was unlocked, save for when dangerous patients were seeing her that shan’t be allowed to escape - the light of her domain spilled into the dark hall, yet more candles defiantly proud … these ones would be spared, she had work to pour over. Her desk stood to the far side of the wall, facing the door with the chair behind it. She walked toward it and shut the door behind her to garner some privacy, but when her gaze focused on her destination, the twitch of a crow looking at her with its beady eye caused the budding psychologist to freeze. From there, her breath ceased and she stood as a doe in the gaze of a hunter. In her peripheral, her gaze traced a path from one crow to the next, mind waving flags of both danger and mystery. Finally, her gaze trailed up the feet of someone she had not seen in quite some time, and she knew the person uncannily well.
Vera’s simple skirt was bland and emotionless, but still she curled her fingers about the edges of the fabric and curtsied awkwardly in admiration as she thought many girls did to respectable figures. Hopefully, she planned, Labrae would appreciate the gesture and the two would find common ground. Vera was a simple farm girl in comparison … Labrae was, and always will be, the web mother, her mother. She knew that she was but an unenlightened pup before they had crossed paths many years ago, and she was not about to be ignorant of such a fact.
Seeing Labrae’s warm smile, Vera relaxed. She saw that Labrae was sitting upon the patient’s couch, surrounded by her peculiar birds. She had not seen them before, were they strays let in by an open window, or were they Labrae’s pets, her eyes and ears? Vera knew her place, and that she shouldn’t pry despite having the deep-seated curiosity of a spider inspecting prey on a vibrating web.
Vera blinked in surprise when Labrae offered an introductory greeting. Labrae’s mother, Sintra, was proud of Vera, and what she had accomplished? This was truly encouraging, and it meant a lot to her as she had been working hard to impress the two of them. She had sought to excel in as many avenues as possible, and it was all to further her value to the Webspinners. And so, in this moment honoring her achievements, it was finally time to put them to a test with a task. Vera smiled brightly, cocking her head to one side.
“Whatever you may wish, it shall be done with utmost discretion.” Her words had a cowed, sickly planned sound to them that hinted at a repressed morbidity, but all the same they were often spoken slowly with every word chosen carefully. It conveyed that she was cautious, perhaps even some would view her as timid. She realized at this point that she was getting a bit stricken by Labrae, so she resolved to be more guarded. Still, when the Mortalborn did some prying of her own and offered a reprieve to the intense curiosity she felt, she couldn’t help but indulge.
“I’m faring well, busy and learning as much I can … The Seekers, yes. I have since become an Illusionist, I have a conduit, and. It’s been … enlightening. There are so many things I wish to know, my mind is always telling me to ask questions, but it’s difficult to bar them away. We could be here all night with what I might ask of you about Sintra, the Gods, magic … I will spare you that. However, I do wish to know, as companionship breeds achievement ... are there any other Webspinners in Andaris aside from myself? I may soon begin to study the noble courts, and those wise to such a place would help me to avoid scrutiny with their advice.”