Another one of those weeks in which I haven’t been feeling all that well, which means that I haven’t been writing much and what I have managed to accomplish doesn’t feel like a lot. But great things sometimes come from something that …
If there is one constant about the Queen of the Succubi, it’s that she never expects anything in return for what she does for others. The common refrain heard is, “I owe you”, and Tera’s reply is inevitably, “You owe me nothing.”
Regardless of what she might have done, how complex or simple it might be, how much it means to the recipient of Tera’s generosity, she expects nothing in return. This, of course, brings no end of confusion and concern to others. It’s obvious that she’s a Queen, that she should, therefore, expect some sort of gift in return, some promise made, some offer. Some even think their soul would be acceptable to her. The red-tailed one just smiles in that bemused way of hers, shrugs, and comments: “It isn’t much, don’t worry about it.” She doesn’t see that what she’s done is anything special, that it might be something beyond the pale. Giving to others, for her, is a kind of pleasure and it is one that she especially loves.
So, regardless of who it is, what Tera might have done, or anything else, nothing is expected, nothing is wanted, nor is anything needed. A “thank you” brings a smile, while the offering of a gift is gratefully noted, but she’ll always say that she couldn’t possibly take something.
And so we come to the telling point. It’s just about impossible to give something back to the Queen for all of the things she’s done. Not that many haven’t tried, in all of the ways you could imagine, of course. It’s quite a battle trying to get Tera to see, within herself, that what she’s done for others is far more than nothing much at all.
This, then, brings to light a cherished gift which can be found in Tera’s bedroom, something which she did accept, in spite of her stubbornness, from a moment in her life where the gift mattered, more than she could put into words for the gift carried with it that most cherished of things… a memory. The first, the very first thing she ever accepted seems so simple, something almost so ordinary that it could be overlooked, but Tera never does. It’s a pair of fuzzy red socks.
This very special pair that brought her to tears one Christmas a long time ago was a gift from the Queen’s heart, one that few can understand or see in the way that Tera can. It was a reminder of a conversation at the fence between the Queen and her heart one winter. She spoke of being a bit cold. That thought drifted for a bit in the winter air between the two, the musing that she needed a pair of socks to warm her toes on those cold winter mornings when the floors were so bloody cold.
Whenever she saw those socks, she remembered a package arriving, out of the blue. Her mind drifted back to opening the gift, looking inside to find a Christmas stocking with some delightful fudge hidden beneath a pair of red socks. A card from her heart, the tears of joy in holding in her hands that which he and his Beloved had blessed with their love. The first Christmas they’d shared as family, one she cherished, one that she was forever grateful to Goddess for scheming to bring two families on either side of a fence together.
She can remember telling her heart how wonderful the gift was, how delighted and thankful she was, asking how she could repay his kindness. Her heart, being who he is, replied in a very familiar way: “It isn’t much, don’t worry about it.” It was a familiar reply, said with love for the one that was gifted, whether they expected the gift or not, whether the giving needed to be or not. It simply was and all else that came with the gift was reflections of what giving unto others means.
Perhaps, then, the need within the Queen to brush off the idea of receiving a gift for simply being herself is something that is reflected in many of her family. Perhaps, in a way, they all know that it isn’t about the gift, about the thing done. It’s about giving, as one can.
Perhaps the gift is found in the giving. And, sometimes, the grace is found in the receiving without worrying about deserving, but just because the gift is given out of love.
For in giving to another may seem like it isn’t much, but it’s the greatest miracle in any Realm when it is done out of love.