Thistle looks down at the man that sits on the ground. She has more sense than to consider him a kajirus, or an urt, and cautiously addresses him as master, even as she doubts he might be a free. She kneels down to his level, "Is there anything wrong? The Tavern is open to the free of Gor, there is stew and wine, and merry folk to laugh with, master". She peers at him for any signs of life.
Decius Blackheart looked up as the pretty girl knelt by him and laughed. 'Is there anything wrong, girl? There are many things that are wrong. Much wrongdoing and injustice all over the world, don't you think? As for me ... I'm magnificent. How could I not be? Watching the sun set over the ocean. A beautiful girl kneeling at my feet. What else could I want in life?'
Thistle giggles softly. She places her lyre down on her side, pondering the situation, "It is as you say, master, nothing wrong at the moment, until the belly hungers, the body falls from exhaustion, and the cold of the night seeps into the bones". She could hardly believe that he was an urt, and she is not one to ask outright, lest he be offended by her curiosity. "There is much joy in the sun rise, and in a girl that kneels before you and aims to please, master", or so it was for the time being, even with the secrets she kept. She kneels perfectly poised, still wondering at him, offering him a toothy grin that was more apt for a street rogue than a well trained kajira.
Decius Blackheart waved his index finger at her, 'And yet people forget how wonderful it is to watch the sun set over the ocean... All those people up there, back in the city. What are they chattering and worrying about? It's all nonsense.' He smiled and leaned back against the crates behind him, 'I see it all, girl. All the silly little things they worry about. All the little vanities and petty thoughts that make them unhappy.' He shook his head, chuckling, and then looked back at her. 'Although I don't look into their minds unless they ask. It would be rude to do so. What about yourself? Just by looking in your eyes I can see a sadness. Tell me about yourself.'
Thistle sits up when hearing that he could see a sadness in her eyes. She ponders quickly at her sadness which was pretty much as with the rest of Goreans everywhere; the loss of loved ones and, in her case, the negation of all desire except sexual. She chooses her words carefully, "My sadness, master...is that I cannot find fellow musicians. I was brought up with a family of musicians, and worked in the opulent city of Tor, but two of my masters, a master and a mistress, went to Ar to perform. The master vanished after only three days in Ar, and my mistress left her senses when she met an Initiate in Ar and went on pilgrimage to the Sardar never to come back...So here I am, working for the Tavern, and always wondering where other musicians could be, so that I may gain some inspiration from them. A the moment, my bawdy songs at the Tavern are keeping me alive, but I crave for art...master". She hopes that her long story will be of some significance to him, much like a conjurer who could do wondrous things.
Decius Blackheart nodded, his eyes pondering the ground in front of him, 'Art is so often forgotten but it speaks to the soul in a way that few things can. It makes our life beautiful.' Noticing that the sun had finally set, he raised his eyes to the stars, barely visible above. Sing a song to the stars, girl.'
Thistle had been waiting for such request for a long time. Without a trace of laziness, she puts her harp up, plays a melody in the doric mode, and sings with a tempered song, the song she had been handed down by the family of musicians she had belonged to in Tor, the song she had often wondered about, about its true meaning, because she had always thought that all stars were like other stars, as she had no other knowledge but of the first, and sings,
"The Prison Moon looked at her moon sisters
She said onto them, "Take away this curse of me
for I want to marry the free bosk of Gor.
The shackles and chains mar my starch face.
I want to dance in the Shadows of the Plains
away from the closed doors of the prison cells
where the captive die without dreams of earth
where the wanderers see their forests lost.
I want to look at myself in the mirror of Thassa
and comb myself seeing the purity of my rays
so that the free men may look upon my face
and know that I am the companion of white lace"
Decius Blackheart let his eyes wander to the Prison Moon as he listened. The scene was beautiful. The dark sea crashing against the rocks in front of them. The sound of the harp and the sweet sound of the girl's voice as she too gazed up at the stars and the moon. It was so beautiful it was almost like a dream.