The next few months Meri kept a very low profile and instructed her subjects to do the same. Meri’s intuition foresaw a storm brewing, but she trudged on. Her relationship with her majesty’s daughter was going well, but Meri admitted to herself, it was difficult to work together, as she couldn’t be truthful about what her majesty was doing inside the home of the elders. Her majesty’s daughter was a gem, she was friendly, quiet, and compassionate; all the traits her majesty did not carry. Meri praised her majesty’s daughter often on her creativity and empathy towards the elders. She liked her majesty’s daughter, but since the reprimand from her majesty concerning distancing herself from her subjects, she …
No, that’s not right! Meri could not distance herself from her subjects nor her majesty’s daughter! Meri’s emotions throughout each day stretched from anger, to empathy for the elders, to sadness, to great fear from her majesty. Meri began to age before everyone’s eyes; a dark cloud floated over her. Her stomach was always in knots during her journey at dawn to the home of the elders. She would even run down to the dungeon without walking by her majesty’s gateway, in case her majesty had something negative or hurtful to say to her. Meri tried to delve into her innerness and search for the person she had been when she began her trek, but it was difficult.
The morning assembly’s were uncomfortable, but Meri did her best to hide her emotions towards her majesty. Meri was able to speak enthusiastically about new programs and special events that were approaching. Meri did not let on to the other ‘minders of the elders’ that she was carrying a weight on her shoulders, although the whispers in the halls knew otherwise.
On this day an outing to the market was planned for a few of the elders. The elders always loved their outings, there never seemed to be enough. The market was near, so the journey would be short. They would have the day at the market along with lunch and return at dusk back to the home of the elders. This market outing gave the elders a sense of independence. Some would acquire gifts for family, others for themselves. Meri’s subjects would accompany the elders and make sure they were safe from any harm. Meri had in the first few months of working for her majesty, asked that her subjects be paid for extra time as they never had any time to eat their lunch while caring for the elders on these trips. Her majesty agreed with Meri on this early request. Meri always emphasized to everyone in the home that outings were difficult as many things could go awry, but her subjects were professionals and proved to handle themselves as such. Meri would always behold the elders and her subjects prior to every journey. She would wish them well and assist with boarding. Meri would also make sure her subjects carried extra coin for coffee and tea as a treat for the elders.
Following any journeys, there would always be a debriefing with Meri’s subjects to resolve any issues or concerns that may have come up. This debriefing unfortunately, would prove to be the last one on journeys to the market. What would make things change so drastically? Would Meri have enough fight in her to go up against her majesty once again? Would Meri cave and remain silent? Or would Meri gain strength from the gods to go to battle?