The Women Gather
Tuesday, April 6 – Rhianna Returns
Aideen found mother and daughter surrounded by Snow (the Akita) and Lily (the cat) at the kitchen table in front of the tea pot, laughing at some story Rhianna had just told. They didn’t look like each other, except at the eyes. Yes, the eyes were the same, huge and open and dark — eyes that could see through you whatever your thoughts. But as for the rest, there was no resemblance, none at all. Where Tunde was tall and imposing, Rhianna was short and engaging. Her face too was quite beautiful, but more rounded than Tunde’s, with pink cheeks and firm uplifted lips. Her hair was curly and long with dark black strands spattered with gray. She had pulled it all up in a clasp that was fighting to fall out with every movement she made. And Rhianna was movement personified. She talked with her hands, her head and her shoulders! Where she was animated, Tunde was elegant. Where she was boisterous, Tunde was reserved. Yet there was an unmistakable connection between them, as though they were bound together with invisible silk threads that pulled and gave — one in harmony with the other.
“Come sit with us, Aideen!” Rhianna invited her. “My daughter has told me about you. Welcome to Lemuria. Here is a nice cup of jasmine tea to start your day.”
“I believe that Aideen’s day started several hours ago, Mother,” Tunde smiled at her young charge. “What did you find out about our beginnings, this time?”
“I was reading Lin Yao’s letters, mostly to her mother and to Patia, about her trip to China. It felt like being there. I’m looking forward to more stories about her. I hope she kept up her diary, because Nora gave her a white leather bound journal for her sixteenth birthday.” Aideen’s voice was eager, wanting reassurance.
Tunde smiled with obvious fondness. “You have become quite the detective, unraveling our history! .. “The work you are doing Aideen has not been attempted, owing to the sheer volume of our constantly growing acquisitions. You are indeed an unexpected gift from the gods.”
She excused herself as she and Rhianna hurried off to the Temple for the first plenary of the day.
Aideen waited a bit, pulled her hair back into a knot and placed the gray caftan that Tunde had given her, over her outer clothing. She cautiously followed the path which mother and daughter had taken to the Temple. Once there, she found an inconspicuous archway at the back where the chelae were already seated. Aideen hoped to blend in with the other young women. There was something going on. She felt it instinctively.
Akkasha Chaeli was on the platform at the head of the Temple. There was excitement in her voice…
“And now I have a wonderful surprise for you. We had hoped that she would be able to be with us, but with her heavy schedule of commitments we were not sure until last evening. I am of course speaking of our Ambassador Rhianna, daughter of Patia, who is our official liaison representative to the Norean Order Network of Sanctuaries.
Aideen watched in awe as a magnificent woman walked methodically up the steps of the platform. Her dove gray robe flowed about her body with exquisite assurance and the rainbow silk shawl caressing her face floated over and behind her shoulders elongating her physique. She removed some papers from the sleeve of her robe and carefully placed them on the podium. She attached the translation device to her bosom and smiled brightly.
How wonderful it is to be here among you my Sisters. Thank you for fitting me into your very busy week. I bring you greetings from all parts of the world. I know so many of you. I have sat with you sharing tea. I have sat with you at your satsangs listening to your discoveries and thoughts. I have mourned with you when we buried your dead. I have rejoiced with you at the birth of your babies and here I am again among you, celebrating our past and looking with great anticipation to our future…
Excerpt from ‘The Women Gather’ by Katalin Kennedy