I am going to have to wake her soon.
We could both be hanged if we are discovered, and not only because we each took vows of celibacy. Hers to the order of sisters. Mine to the watch that guards them.
If I wasn’t a conscripted soldier, it might not have happened. If it was a sense of duty that compelled me, and not the lash, I might have turned her away the first time she came to me, with her offerings of hot mead and warm flesh to relieve the chill of the early winter mornings.
She told me she had been watching me, though I had never noticed her before she appeared that night, with shoulders bared beneath a layer of furs. With her hair framing the long shape of her neck. Boldly standing at the door to my watch tower, as if she knew me. Knew my secrets.
But I did not turn her away, and every night since she has returned. The torch light and the stars, and when the moon was full then that light, too, played our shadows across the cold stone walls.
Each time we escaped discovery it became easier to allow it to continue, until I began to anticipate my time at watch. As my shifts begin, I watch the terrain beyond the wall for threats to the holy sisters, but my keen ears were tuned only to the soft padding of her leather-soled slippers.
Author’s Note: These snippets are unedited free-writing exercises that I use as a way to shift my brain into a creative state. I use Lynda Barry’s What It Is YouTube timed exercises (usually 9 minutes worth of writing) for these. They are handwritten in a composition notebook and then typed up here. As I transcribe them, I make minor grammar and spelling corrections, but the overall “clarity” (if you can call it that) of the exercise is left as-is.