As part of an artwork challenge on Facebook, I was nominated by a fellow writer to post my own art/writing for five consecutive days. Each day I’ll nominate another female artist to join with the challenge.
Excerpt from Gaudiloquence and the Frozen Story, Chapter 2:
Gaudiloquence felt a tug on her heart as her mother walked away. Telling the story of her mother’s Name Day had stirred up a secret fear. “Wait,” she called. Limn turned back. “Mama, am I boring?”
Limn looked at her daughter as though the question had been Mama, am I a six-headed dragon? “I beg your pardon?” she said.
“I just… I never expected to be a noun.”
Limn shook her head as if to clear her thoughts, and pushed back a loose strand of wavy hair. “I’m sorry, my dear, but I don’t know what you mean.”
“Well… I always thought the kind of name someone gets shows what kind of person they are.”
“The definition, yes. But you think it also has to do with the part of speech?”
Gaudiloquence wrapped her arms around her knees and shrugged. “I always thought people with verb names were active, energetic people. People who get things done and have adventures. Like you—you’re the busiest person I know, and Granny Rhathymia is always telling us the wild things you got up to as a child.”
Limn gave her short, self-deprecating laugh that was really more of a snort.
“And adjectives—they’re all so interesting and colorful. Just look at Clinquant and Grandmother Sedulous. And nouns…” Gaudiloquence shrugged again. “I just always thought they were the steady, reliable, down-to-earth people.”
“And you don’t want to be steady, reliable, and down-to-earth?”
“Oh, it’s not that I don’t want to be, it’s just that…I don’t think that I am. I always wanted to be a verb, or maybe an adjective, but not a noun.”
Limn crossed her arms and put her chin in one hand. She tapped her fingers on her cheek. Finally, she said brightly, “I will tell you two things, daughter.”
Gaudiloquence sat up straighter and rubbed her itchy nose.
“One: perhaps—and I am only asking you to consider the possibility—perhaps you are more reliable than you think you are. And two: ‘gaudiloquence’ is a beautiful word, and I love saying it, but it’s rather a mouthful for everyday conversation. You need a nickname. So what would you think about sometimes letting people call you Gaudé? It’s short, it’s actually the root of your name, and it’s a verb. It means rejoice.”
Gaudiloquence broke into a grin. “I like it.” She tried saying it over a few times with different inflections. “Gaudé, how lovely to see you again. Gaudé, come here this minute! Goodness, Gaudé, what glorious green gooseberries!”
They laughed together. “Get up and go, Gaudé!”
She yawned. “In the morning. In fact, I think I’ll make it my mission today to do every verb starting with G that I can think of.”
“A grand goal, my good girl.”
Gaudé settled down on her mat and arranged the blankets just so. She closed her eyes and imagined filling her day full of G verbs. She would gallop and guess, grin and grimace, grab and grasp, give and gain, giggle and guffaw, glisten and gleam and glitter and glow. She imagined helping her mother prepare dinner and making every attempt to grind, grate, grease, gulp, and gobble—though she thought her mother might draw the line at gargling.
Gaudé sunk into the warmth and sleepiness that came from a full belly, a full day, and a full heart. Handsome young men danced into her dreams, and she shivered.