Post #4.14, Thursday, January 30, 2020

Historical Setting, 562 C.E. Gaul

“Colleta, tie on your cape; We will walk in this winter’s sunshine. We can just go down the lane but I need to have a personal chat with you. Eve came with me to watch the children so we can talk.”

         Eve says nothing. Probably her teary eyes lead Colleta to believe I’m intruding my will between these sisters-in-law. Maybe I am but it is not to chastise Colleta as she may suppose.

         “Colleta, I plan to leave my comfortable quarters in the loft over the donkey’s stall and move to Tours. That will mean that Eve will be alone again and without your thoughtfulness the only people she will speak to would be those who come for help from suffering. She was, as you noticed, distraught this morning when I told her of my plans. That’s why I’m begging your kindness. I know it has been hard for you to get accustomed to seeing her scars but now I’m asking that you accept her invitations to eat at her table. You may even find it helpful to have another prepare the meal now and then for your family. And I ask that you send the children to visit her often.  I hope this is the best for both you and Eve, but it will call for your intentional consideration to include her with family.”

         “Is that your big secret? Of course we can be family to her.”

         “Thank you Colleta. I’d hoped you’d understand. It’s important.”

         “So, Papa Lazarus, what will you find to do in Tours?”

         “Maybe I can work as a scribe in the scriptorium of the monastery. I’ve done that kind of work before needing no holy orders — just many years of practice with inks.”

         “Probably you didn’t hear of this. I have a guess why Ezra didn’t tell you but you should surely be warned. The St. Maurice Church was burned to the ground on the very night of the Christ Mass.”

         “Really? I’ve heard nothing of that! Do you mean that old Roman sanctuary laid right into the ancient wall? It was there even when St. Martin was abbot?”

         “Yes. It was really old.”

         “Were people there? Was there tragedy to life?”

         “I have no idea.  I know nothing at all of it, except I have a guess at what happened and I would not repeat my suspicions except that you should know.”

(What “suspicions?” the next chapter begins Tuesday, February 4)

Published by J.K. Marlin

Retired church playwright learning new art forms-- fiction writing, in historical context and now blogging these stories. The Lazarus Pages have a recurring character -- best friend of Jesus -- repeatedly waking to life in various periods of church history and spirituality.

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