Saturday, April 4, 2015

Fans' POV stories #12 . . . by Blessing Counter

Well . . . wow. This POV scene is not from my books. It surely captured my attention--not only the original, but Blessing Counter's scene from the husband's POV. I actually like Blessing Counter's rendition better than the author's! :-)


Here is a POV that I did from the book, The King's Daughter, by Suzanne Martel.

I hope you enjoy it! :)

~ Blessing Counter

Setting the Scene: Jeanne Chatel de Rouville, her stepchildren, and their friends Gasagonas and Mathurin are left at home while Simon, Jeanne’s husband, goes hunting with his friends. After hearing that the Iroquois are coming, Jeanne makes her little dwelling look like it had already been attacked in order to trick the Iroquois. She hangs her hair on a branch, burns down the house, then hides in an underground cellar with the children and Gasagonas. Three days later she ventures out . . .


From the Book: (Jeanne's point of view)

Someone was talking. Who dared to speak in front of the ruined house? Two men. Two shadows sitting on the blackened doorstep. She had to get away, lead the enemy far from her young partridges, toward the river. 

Slowly, gently.

The men were talking. An indistinct murmur. Here was the sand under her hands and knees. And the bush where Mathurin was sleeping, his nose in the hay. 

There were two canoes on the bank. Had her trick not completely succeeded? The Iroquois had stopped. They were waiting, in spite of everything. 

One of them called out. He said “Are you coming, Rouville?” 
           
A sigh answered him coming from very close, from the shore. 

Iroquois don’t speak French, don’t say, “Are you coming, Rouville?” 

In the moonlight a man was kneeling on the ground, his shoulders bent. He was running his fingers through the long hair he had taken from the branch where it had been hanging.  

Iroquois don’t cry softly, repeating, “Jeanne, my Jeanne.” 

It’s funny, that story about the Iroquois, the cat, and the dog, and the hair. . . I’ll have to tell it to Simon; he won’t listen all the way through. The earth is turning so much I’m dizzy. Suddenly the man stood up. His knife was gleaming in his hand. He moved soundlessly. The hair was hanging from his left hand. 

Hair doesn’t grow on your hand. How tall and silent he is! Is he a shadow? A dream like the others, or a nightmare?

The dagger was shining in the moonlight as it shone in the sunshine another time. . . another . . . another time . . . Now I don’t have to wake up because the dream is marvelous. 

Strong arms, warm lips, a voice reverberating and repeating the same thing a hundred times. I’ll have to sleep again, for a long time, to dream of Simon who’s cradling me and crying in my hair. The hair on my head, not the hair on the tree. 

I have to tell him the children are sleeping under the earth. Simon will be happy . . . he’ll laugh and build a beautiful house . . . he’ll stop shouting, “Charron, Carrot-Top. She’s here. Jeanne is here. They’re safe.”

******* 

From Simon's point of view:

“Charron! Carrot Top! Hurry up!” Simon shouted over the roar of the waters splashing against his canoe. 

“What’s the rush?” Charron grumbled, well knowing the answer. 

“There’s a certain someone waiting for him at home,” Carrot Top teased lightly. 

“Is it possible?” Charron gaped mockingly. “Why, Carrot Top, I do believe our captain is blushing!” 

Carrot Top laughed. Simon shook his head and dug his paddle further into the water. Along with his two friends, he shot across the water, coming closer to home . . . and his beloved Jeanne. 

******

Evening was approaching as the three companions neared the Rouvilles’ dwelling. A thin line of smoke came spiraling over the treetops. 

“I can’t wait for Jeanne’s cooking!” Charron exclaimed, sniffing deeply in the hopes of catching a whiff of his promised supper. “You did a good job in picking out your wife, Rouville.”

“Why, thank you,” Simon acknowledged with a twinkle in his green eyes. “I did choose well, if I do say so myself.”

“Oh, come on,” Carrot Top broke in. “You always take the credit, Simon. At least give Jeanne--” he broke off suddenly. 

Simon stared in horror at the little clearing. In the place of his house stood a pile of charred logs, still smoking. Instead of the laughter and singing that he had anticipated, there was nothing. The place was empty, deserted, his family gone.  
Leaping out of the canoe, he frantically ran up the bank. “Jeanne! Nicolas! Isabelle!” 

Charron and Carrot Top silently followed him. 

Simon searched the ruined house, trying in vain to see any sign of anything living. There was nothing. 

Hearing his name called, he turned. Charron was beckoning to him. He moved toward them slowly, fear creeping into his heart. 

“Carrot Top found him,” Charron said quietly and he pulled the thick bushes aside. 

Simon shuddered. Lying in the grass was Mathurin, an Iroquois hatchet buried deep in his skull. Beside him was the still body of Miraud, Nicolas’ dog. 

Turning away, he saw something that made his heart seize with anguish. It was his Jeanne’s hair. The long, curly dark locks hung from a branch, blowing softly with the wind. 

“Not again*,” he moaned, removing the hair from the branch. “Not my Jeanne.”

The other two men sat down on the blackened doorstep, too shocked and grieved to say anything. 

Memories of Jeanne flashed into Simon’s mind. Her endless laughter, her joyful singing, her eyes sparkling with love, all those times would never again be. His source of happiness had been snatched from him, taken away by those Iroquois. 

The moon shone brightly down on the sad little scene. There was silence, nothing was heard except for the occasional cries that came from Simon, who was kneeling on the soft ground bent with grief. 

Finally, Charron and Carrot Top stood up, ready to leave the place that seemed to be surrounded with total grief and pain. 

“Are you coming, Rouville?” Carrot Top asked as he headed toward the canoes. 

Simon sighed and ran his fingers through the long hair once more. “Jeanne, my Jeanne.” 

Suddenly, he sensed movement in front of him and he raised his head. A person stood silently behind a tree, watching him. He stood up slowly and moved soundlessly toward it, still clutching the hair in his hand. 

The person stepped out from the cover of the trees. It was a woman. She was alive. His Jeanne was safe. 

Almost at once, Jeanne was in his arms. His joy had no limit. He kissed her and hugged her. All the while, Jeanne stared at him, stupefied. 

“The Iroquois . . . the dog . . . the children are sleeping under the earth. I know Simon will be happy . . . . and he’ll laugh and build a beautiful house . . . such a nice dream,” she murmured dazedly. 

“I’m here, Jeanne. Jeanne. Jeanne.” he buried his face in her hair and wrapped his arms tighter around her, feeling as if he would never again let her go. 

“Charron, Carrot-Top! She’s here. Jeanne is here. They’re safe.” 

 * Before he met Jeanne, Simon had lost his first wife, Aimee and their baby to the Iroquois. 


 

6 comments:

  1. That was so sweet! I LOVED it! Great job Blessing Counter! :D
    I agree with Andi, your version was even better then the author's!

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  2. Wow! I could feel the shock, the pain, the anguish and then the dizzying relief when I read your version, Blessing Counter. I didn't get that feeling when I read the author's.

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  3. That was amazing!! I mean. . .yeah :) I agree with Rebekah, I actually felt what Simon was feeling in your version, but not ion the authors. Great job!

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  4. Amazing job Blessing! Yours was definitely better than the original!!:)

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  5. Great job Blessing Counter!

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  6. Agreed with Andi- this version was better! The other one didn't make much sense.

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Let Andi know what you think!