Jarn’s Journal Year 4 Day 81 #sffsat

Zebra head (Morguefile)

Year 4 Day 81

The gather is almost over for the year.

I keep telling myself, as the time for parting approaches, that they are clever animals, that their resemblance to my species is superficial, that I can have no real relationships with them.

I fool no one but myself, and I don’t do a very good job of that.

Meerkat, now plump again, has taken over the job of preparing my food and clothing. She is careful not to annoy me, but there are times, when she does not know I am watching her, that she looks strangely wistful. Did my refusal to accept her as an acolyte last year hurt her that much? She still has no real place with Rain Cloud’s group; they have taken her in because she has no place to go, but none of the males of that group would be willing to take her as a second mate. I am not sure why. Certainly her skills at cooking and clothing preparation are above average—far better than Songbird’s were when I first took her in, and even those were far better than mine. I suspect she is not willing to take second place.

This is an excerpt from Jarn’s Journal, the fictional journal of a fictional human-like alien stranded on Earth in Africa, 125,000 years ago. A longer version is on my main blog; the whole Journal to date is on my author site. For other science fiction and fantasy snippets, go to Science Fiction and Fantasy Saturday–and we all love comments.

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About sueannbowlingauthor

Sue Ann Bowling earned a bachelor’s degree in physics at Radcliffe/Harvard and a Ph.D. in geophysics from the University of Alaska. After thirty years of teaching, she retired to focus on writing. Bowling has lived in Alaska for fifty years. Visit her Web site on canine color genetics at http://bowlingsite.mcf.com/Genetics/Genetics.html.
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12 Responses to Jarn’s Journal Year 4 Day 81 #sffsat

  1. T. M. Hunter says:

    I’m guessing an acolyte is similar to a wife? If so, not sure why Jarn refused…

  2. I imagine Jarn is trying to keep some sort of distance from the people as he is to be objective and you can hardly be that when involved relationally (can’t believe that’s a word…). It’s always interesting to see how he views these people and to now see that he’s questioning his objectivity and perhaps on the route to reconsidering it and how he can interact with the people is really interesting.

  3. If acolyte holds the same meaning for Jarn as it does for us, I can see why he would not accept her in such a role. That would mean that he would accept his deification by the natives, and he has been resistant to that. It’s good that he has someone to help him with his basic needs, though. Perhaps he can learn some tips from her.

    • Like all the R’il’nai (and some crossbreds, such as Roi in Homecoming and Tourist Trap) he is empathic in the sense of literally feeling another’s emotions. But he’s in what is (to him) a totally novel situation.

  4. Very few of us are willing to play second fiddle. I missed Jarn, glad to be reading more of his thoughts.

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