I wish I had researched my family tree some more, especially given what I know now, or at least, suspect, about Mother’s ancestry. It was quite the project in my teens, and I managed to trace Father’s side back to the late 18th century. Mother’s side was trickier, with a lot of her side of the family being Irish. I only got back as far as her grandmother, who came from a place called Knocknacarra, near Galway. Sadly, we never managed to get over there on a family holiday, which could have allowed me to research further, and my sea-faring days only ever took me as far as Dublin. Had I managed to do some research, it might have been trickier than I imagined, once we started getting into the fae side of things. From my experience of the Seelie Court here, they seem to be quite keen on records, but letting a mere mortal have access to them would probably be unlikely. Of course, in those days, I would have laughed and poured scorn on the idea that my ancestry was anything other than human.
The subject of ancestry came up the other night. I found Dori wandering around near the castle and went to ask if there was anything she wanted, or if she had another message from Vedis. She had not seen Vedis since I had seen her, but did volunteer to deliver any message if I had one. I did not, but did say that any healers they could spare would be greatly welcomed. She was playing with her hair as we spoke, and I noticed how very similar it was to my own. I made a joke about how we looked as though we could be related and asked if she had any family from Kent or Galway.
She had apparently been thinking much the same thing. Like me, she got her hair colouring from her mother, but her family were from Donegal. She asked whereabouts in Galway I was from, then added, that she hoped it wasn’t an odd question, when I was from. I had to chuckle at the latter, but then; she had no way of knowing that it wasn’t even a remotely odd question so far as I was concerned. I told her about Father’s family being from Kent, with ancestors in Wales and Plymouth, and that Mother’s family were from the aforementioned Knocknacarra near Galway. Moving onto the when question, I told her the year of my birth, and that two or three years had passed since I last knew the absolute year, that being 1892. I further explained, citing my conversation with the phoenix and various other flimsy evidence, my conjecture that we were currently somewhen contemporaneous with the 15th century. I added that his was purely guesswork, but was as good a guess as I could manage.
Wherever, and indeed, whenever, she was from, she wasn’t the least bit fazed by my answer, so I had to assume she had been through similar travels to my own. Her view was that this place seemed to be apart from time, very different from what she was used to, although, wherever that was, they had stories about places like this. She was most intrigued by the various creatures here and expressed the wish that she could get to her laboratory to study things. I asked if she was a scientist but she would only admit to that being one of the many hats she wore. She then changed the subject by asking if she could guess what I was. I told her she could go ahead, but to ignore the clothing, as that definitely was not me, especially the sluagh blood, which still dotted my clothes here and there.
She looked me over, carefully, walking around and examining me quite closely. I don’t know if she was using any supernatural powers. If she was, they were not ones that I could sense. After a few moments, she asked me if I had been the captain of a ship. She did not see me as a pirate, so wondered if I was part of some army.
I laughed and told her that while I had read pirate stories as a child, I was anything but. I told her about being a senior officer on a merchant vessel, how I had originally trained as an accountant, and how I came to be steward of the village. She said that she had seen me as a natural leader, but admitted that was slightly cheating, since she had seen me dealing with the villagers and organising things around the village. She then said that she wanted to ask another question, if I wouldn’t be offended. She asked if I had been a parental figure.
I thought about that for a moment, then I told her about Arthur, how his mother had died, and how it came to be that my son was adopted by my brother and his wife. So, I was a parent, but not much of a parental figure. Thinking about it later, I suppose I have played somewhat of a parental role to the various children here and back in Jasper Cove, so maybe I was undervaluing my parental status.
She apologised for bring up a sensitive subject, but I told her it was not a problem. She then asked me to make similar guesses about her. This would have been quite entertaining, had I the time, but since I did not, I told her that I would apply my detective skills later, maybe over a drink in the tavern. She seemed agreeable to that, so I left her to her business while I went about mine.