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Hello, everyone. 🙂 Thank you for coming. I hope your week was pleasant.

Much love to our gracious hostess, Emily Witt.

Math: (month + date + first 2 digits of year + last two digit of year)/month = (4 + 20 + 20 + 16)/4 = 15 paragraphs (under 500 words)

Character descriptions:

Arvid 5’6″, dark copper skin, long brown hair, brown eyes, gymnast’s build

Taiamuk 6’3″, long red hair, gray eyes, a multitude of freckles, numerous scars, muscles a la young Jackie Chan. Notable scars include three stab wounds on his right side and a long, horizontal gash across his chest. Owns one piece of clothing: trousers.

Necessary Context

  • Arvid and Tai are still guests of the Petsuchos.
  • Male and female Petsuchos live and work, for the most part, separately. After a long night (Petsuchos are nocturnal) of helping out around the caves, Arvid and Tai decided to use their limited free time to hang out together.
  • There’s some awkwardness between them because, as you may have guessed if you read last week’s WIPpet, Tai sort of revealed something about himself Arvid wasn’t thrilled to learn.
  • Accents are a pain in the neck to figure out when you wrote your character his own language.

Tai pulled something like a large scrap of fabric, though stiff and crinkly, from some hidden place in his loincloth. Squiggling symbols that resembled nothing Arvid recognized covered both sides. Arvid’s gaze flicked back and forth between fabric and loincloth. She wanted to know what the symbols indicated and what material the Petsuchos used to make the strange cloth, but she also wondered where Tai hid it in his flimsy piece of clothing. It certainly didn’t hide much else.

“You be, uh…”

Arvid’s gaze landed on his face out of habit when he started speaking, but stayed there because of the expressions he made. He stared at the squiggles on the fabric and moved his lips in strange ways, pursing and stretching them, his tongue working among his teeth.

After what looked like a difficult struggle with his mouth, he spoke with painstaking attention to every sound. “Hoo-rior of Nairi, yes? You, uh… tuh-rain like man and…” He flipped the fabric over. His eyes flitted back and forth across it several times before he finished his sentence and looked up at her, brows raised in question. “…have heapon many?”

He could read! In one night, he grew more fluent in her language than in the months they spent together. Because he could read. Forgetting his question, she pointed at a squiggle. “What is this?”

Tai’s furrowed his brow. “Girgik.”

Arvid looked at the symbol. So that one meant “girgik.” Now that she knew what to call it, she picked out several girgiks on the page interspersed among other miniature doodles. She wanted to ask what it meant and why so many adorned the fabric, but the symbol next to it fascinated her too much to stop to figure out how to communicate those questions. She pointed to it. “What is this?”

Tai mouthed a drawn-out, “Ah!” Smiling, he slid his finger along the fabric under a grouping of the little symbols. “Zigad. To Nairi, heapon.”

“You say, ‘girgik,’” Arvid reproached.

He waved the fabric. “This is girgik.” He pointed at the bunch of symbols. “This say zigad.”

She rubbed the girgik between two fingers. It felt stiff and fibrous and reminded her of dry leaves.  “Girgik.”

“Yes.”

She pointed to the grouping. “Zigad.”

“Yes.”

She pointed to another clump including the symbol she mistook to mean girgik by itself. If the first grouping with this symbol meant weapon-at least, she assumed that was what Tai tried to say-did the symbol always indicate an instrument of battle?

To be perfectly fair to the Germans trying so hard in the above video, I can’t hit the “rd” blend in Spanish words like “verde” without my American hanging out all over the place (and that after 9 years of study) and there’s a sound in French I can’t even form. Tai, as you may have guessed, doesn’t know how to form the “w” sound (it’s absent from his language) or form r blends. Of course, I just figured this out, so there’s a heap of edits I get to make. 😛

To join WIPpet Wednesday…

  1. Post a snippet of your WIP that relates to the date
  2. Thank Emily Witt
  3. Link up here
  4. Enjoy good writing
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