Wen on Orr

By Alexandra Gushurst-Moore

On the planet Orr, which is located in the Forka Berg of the Gamma Dom, there lived a family of normal size. The vital thing to know is that of the seven brother sisters, the youngest was called Wen.

Wen was a girl who looked like a boy.

She would sometimes go gallivanting in the reaching dark, which Orrians liked very much to do because at the time of the reaching dark was when they achieved their best thinking. The silent black allowed for simple contemplation and that was what they very much liked to do best.

Wen’s next up sibling was called Thou. It was Thou’s habit to go hunting, indeed, it was the habit of each member of this particular family to love to do something very well. Apart from Wen, who did not know what she loved to do very well.

Wen sometimes accompanied Thou into the desert mist to capture Gaagle Birds and Jackawoznits. She liked to watch Thou spring like a dancer through the night, following close on the many plumed tail of a beauteous bird. When Thou did catch a Gaagle Bird or a Jackawoznit, Thou would bring it home for other brother Zaar who would teach it languages. Then after some time, they would release the bird back into the gathering dark.

It should be said that the gathering dark was a very different time to the reaching dark, and if you were to experience both you would know why but otherwise it is almost impossible to explain as are so many things these days.

Wen would not sit with any other of her brother sisters, nor would she go into the reaching dark with them, as they loved their thing so well she could not understand them at all most of the time. She did not even sit with Zaar. Then one day, Thou went off hunting for an Orr year, which is not such a long time but it is long enough to miss someone.

When Thou returned home the family all sat together in the last light of the reaching dark and had a wonderful time. All expect for Wen, who was sorry to say that she had nothing to say to her family.

As a year of reaching dark came to an end, Wen decided she was tired and bored of not loving something she was very good at. So she did something unprecedented. She stayed awake and went into the new day.

It was a strange feeling to be alone and in the same place that looks very different. Indeed, it was different, it was bright and fluid and joyful. Wen began to cry. Wen had never cried before, and she was happy. Wen had never been happy before.

She wandered around this new, familiar place. She sighed at every new thing she saw. Then she came to the bank of the river Down, whose shores were made of pure white sand. It was so bright it almost blinded her and it was beautiful.

She found other white things too, an ancient mollusc called Arc Khazar and a tree that reached almost as tall as the first moon, and there in the middle of a sea of blue heather, waiting for her, was the thing she loved very most to do. Although she did not know it yet.

Somebody had left an easel and a set of oil paints. Wen counted seven colours, each more beautiful and radiant than the next, and each one was one brother sister, she saw. Wen was the colour green.

The girl who looked like a boy sat at the easel and began to paint. She painted for a whole new day, and soon the reaching dark was upon Orr again.

Thou came and found her.

‘What is it, Wen?’ asked the sibling.

‘It is called Earth.’ Said Wen.

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