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February 2024 Ficlet Challenge
The word prompt this month is ... ATTENTION

And for the second challenge:

One of our characters has got some unexpected free time.

Happy writing!
A day off

She lay in the bed and stretched, slowly, enjoyably. All today’s engagements unexpectedly cancelled! She watched as Deltas busily catered to her needs. Eventually, she rose and completed a gentle exercise regime, toning her body to optimum fitness.

Breakfast. Nothing cultured, no reconstituted algae-based imitations. Everything was real, naturally produced. The cost was astronomical, of course, but she deserved it. Besides, she had enough of the other stuff when she was with the military.

She bathed – not the plebian sonic shower that most endured, but the gentle warmth of shoulder-deep precious water, laced with expensive salts and perfumes designed to relax and then invigorate. Deltas assisted with her dressing. Afterwards, while she made her way downstairs, they began the maintenance of her suite.

In the hallway below, an aide helped her into outdoor things and ensured the guards held open the entrance doors at exactly the right moment.

Now she was outside, walking through the gardens that were her private space where she could escape everyday cares and pressures. Knowing that others had neither resources nor opportunity to do the same made everything so much more enjoyable.

Despite the sun, the air was cold: she was glad of her fur coat. Earth still experienced seasons, despite the Axis Shift and the Wars, and here spring was just beginning. Breathing in that cold made her one with the planet and she moved slowly, alert for signs of new growth. The gardens were her own venture: she aimed to match their restoration to that of the house she now inhabited.

Naturally, the High Council objected to the expense, as they had over rebuilding the mansion itself, but history proved that great houses were nothing without their estates … History! She almost laughed aloud. The ‘original’ designs for the gardens, the ornamental lake, the fountains… all her own ideas, based on the few faded images that accompanied plans of the ancient building! History is always written by the winners: she had won the argument and the Council unwillingly approved the additional taxes.

For once, her project was not merely personal aggrandisement: so little of the natural world remained untouched that her gardens would become a sanctuary for native flora and fauna. One day, people - those millions now crowded into the domes because of the ‘fallout’ - would thank her. Most of Earth was now free of the toxins released by the Wars, but only a few wealthy Alphas had followed her example and created something in the open. Everyone else stayed in the convenient - and above all controlled – habitat domes the Federation provided.

That her Federation provided. Everything was so nearly perfect, as she stooped to examine the first crocus flowers, open to absorb the sunlight. Brushing her hand gently across the petals, she experienced a pang of doubt. What was missing? Why only nearly perfect?

She looked around the silent, empty space, disturbed by a sudden realisation. It might have been pleasant to share her achievements with someone who understood.
"You're not sulking, I hope?"
Such an intriguing insight into the character of Servalan!
The Blake’s 7 section of my blog, where I post fics, art, essays, etcetera.
Very nice MCVirn.
Just who was she thinking of at the end...someone who understood?

Now to start walking up and down muttering to myself!!!!
Edited by littlesue on 02-02-2024 13:08
Cold! You don't know the meaning of the word cold!
Cold is when you have ice on the INSIDE of your window!!

Sue's Book Shelf

Rebel Run Video
Thanks for the prompt, purplecleric, and for the kind comments. It's been ages since I wrote anything that wasn't directly website-related!
As for who She had in was more about making things perfect for herself. She only thought 'might', because relationships spoiled, sooner or later.
But you're free to speculate, Sue!
"You're not sulking, I hope?"
Excellent fic, restrained, beautifully paced, poignant with very plausible world building and understanding of Servalan.
Play the hand fate deals you.
That's a lovely exploration of Servalan's point of view, Ms Virn.
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