46. Those who fall and those who seize
It is not straightforward to stand on your feet when life stretches legs for you. We all know that Rasmus is struggling to find a foothold. We’ll see how it goes for him now.
Tusnelda and Martin have fewer challenges and yet we will follow them on a day that offers something out of the ordinary.
It’s afternoon and Rasmus meets the boys at their usual gym in Windenburg.
“I’m going home. I’m not able to train today.” he says to Marcus.
“Do not give up, Rasmus! You are making great progress.” Marcus replies encouragingly.
He has obviously decided to be the Rasmus mentor and to keep him in good shape.
Rasmus groans and sends Marcus a sour look as he struggles with the weights.
Marcus means well, but right now Rasmus would give a damn about him … it’s only his willpower that drowns out his curses.
“Maybe you could swim instead?” says Marcus.
Rasmus is quite good at swimming and he moves at a good speed. The embrace of the water and the sense of weightlessness force him to relax.
When Clara joins him in the pool, he feels like showing off.
He quickly ascends the diving springboard.
He closes his eyes before jumping….
Unexpectedly he’s back at The Bluffs … she is waiting for him down in the water.
A splash and he dives deep below the surface.
His eyes are still closed as he rises from the bottom …. just in a second he will open his eyes….
….and see her loving eyes and her beautiful smile.
It will instead be Clara’s exploratory gaze he meets.
“Are you all right?” she asks.
Reality hits him like a hammer and he quickly seeks up the water.
“No!” is his short exact answer.
Later, he has told his whole sad love story to Clara and now they are both sitting in silence and thinking.
“A marriage contains a promise that is hard to break, but still…. maybe she found something in you she was missing.” says Clara suddenly
Rasmus looks at Clara in surprise.
“She could have had it all!… It’s not my dream to be someone’s steak.” Rasmus replies after which he goes.
He will go home and mourn without hearing any more meaningless explanations.
He is interrupted by Marcus.
“Hi Rasmus! You look like you might need an encouragement … let’s find a bar, drink some tasty brew and eat some tacky food.” says Marcus.
“I’m a chef’s apprentice and I have to train my skills … Let me take care of the food, then we’ll find the bar afterwards.” says Rasmus.
That is the reason why Rasmus a little later stands bent over the pots in the gym’s kitchen.
He is at his best when he cooks and even better when he can serve the food to others.
It’s a simple serving but there’s nothing tacky about his food.
Don and Clare send each other a glance, but sensibly she chooses another table.
It leaves a free chair for Rasmus.
Rasmus appreciates Don’s carefree nature , but he can not quite follow his penchant for casual relationships.
Maybe something’s wrong with me, Rasmus thinks.
Marcus and Paolo both live in the same collective and it is clear to hear that they have known each other for years.
Rasmus forgets his grief for a while when he talks to Don. It is impossible to take life too seriously in his company.
Don is a womanizer but actually quite caring when it comes to Rasmus.
Maybe he considers him a little brother, a guy he needs to learn to grow up.
The biggest contradictions can sometimes end up as best friends and that is exactly the way it is with Rasmus and Don.
Martin is not going to work today and he is relaxing by the easel in the garden, but soon he becomes restless over the stagnant challenge.
The painting is finished and Martin moves on to a more physical challenge.
The climbing wall is his new occupation.
The treadmill can not challenge the muscles in his arms, so here he has found a new tool that challenges his whole body.
He is strong and agile like a spider.
Tusnelda also has a day off and she enjoys having time to bake.
They both look forward to a day off together where they can have fun with their friends.
The house next door
Rasmus is still lying under the duvet. It looks like he’s crying?
He is already in his clothes and now he gets up to give himself a pep talk in the mirror.
“Come on Rasmus! You’re not lonely! You have lovely friends and the sports club you can hang out with every evening!”
Still, he thinks he looks like an idiot in the mirror.
The longing and grief still overwhelm him with a violent heaviness.
Why is he suddenly so depressed?
Last night he and the sports team had so much fun.
After eating Rasmus’ meal, they went to The Shrieking Llama in Windenburg. It’s such a cozy old-fashioned inn.
He’s been here before with Blue, but the sports club and he had such a good time together that he hardly gave it a thought.
They had so many good laughs over topics he has now forgotten.
Don left him to play table football with Clara.
Rasmus did not miss him because he had a good deep conversation with Paolo. He’s a really cool guy.
On reflection, he and Don no longer talked together that night. Don goes his own ways.
He played ‘Don’t Wake the Llama’ with another guest and Marcus and he managed to win over Marcus several times.
They sold a really tasty red nectar at the bar so he ended up drinking several glasses….
Fortunately, he is not going to work today.
It was well past midnight and Don and Clara were the first to go home.
At that point, he will admit that he perceived the world a bit blurred, so it was probably time for him to go home as well.
The sky was brightening and suddenly he recognized the bush Blue had introduced him to.
It looked like someone had their joyful moment.
It actually made him a little sad, but since his feelings were also a little blurry it was not that bad.
At least not then.
Suddenly Clara stood in front of him and gave him a warm hug. She had been so happy for their confidential conversation on the edge of the pool.
In fact, the rest of the evening was very fuzzy in his memories …..
At least he found home to his bed so he did not have to spend the night on a bench this time.
Brooke is out roaming so the only thing moving in the house is the washing machine’s centrifuge.
The sight makes him dizzy and gives him no comfort.
It’s a pretty beautiful day. The sky is clear blue with no clouds.
Rasmus finds a basketball and shoots a few goals.
He is just standing and considering whether to continue or whether to contact anyone…
Now he’s getting a phone call … it’s Martin.
“Hi Martin! Of course I want to visit you!”
Afternoon in Brindleton Bay
There will soon be a party in Tusnelda and Martin’s home.
Martin looks at his painting one last time before going in to take a shower.
Tusnelda has just finished her cake and now she is carrying it out on the table.
Tusnelda has barely entered the house again before Fiona jumps up on the table and gets ready to eat the cake.
Oops! Caught in the act. Martin’s coming.
“Shame on you Fiona! You should know the rules of a cats good behavior.” Martin quarrels angrily
The cake was saved at the last minute and Martin goes to clean the grill.
For Rasmus’ sake, he has put soy sausages on the grill.
Wondering how they taste? One can hardly see the difference from an ordinary sausage.
It looks like Fiona still wants to put her teeth into the cake.
Now the hot dogs are ready and Martin puts them on the table.
The smell of sausages attracts more cats. The kittens have now become so big they can jump up on anything.
“Stop! Leave the food alone!” Martin shouts angrily.
Fie looks at him in amazement … “Is that me you are talking to that way?” she answers with a short meow.
“Argh! I’m going crazy!” groans Martin. … “These cats lack education!”
He then gives the kittens a lecture, human food is certainly not suitable food for a cat.
Neither Fie nor Futte seem to care.
Tusnelda is dressed for the party.
Martin makes some Franks and Beans with real sausages.
Rasmus never succeeds in convincing him of the benefits of vegetarian life.
Tusnelda is in a party mood and now her guests are finally starting to arrive.
Besides Rasmus and Flora, she has invited all her colleagues.
Tusnelda goes to greet Simon, Aanya and Rasmus.
“Can I offer you a drink?” she asks kindly.
Rasmus looks so sad. He looks like he’s bored … or maybe he has a hangover?
Aanya tries to start a conversation ….
He definitely has a hangover.
Not even Martin seems to create any joy of recognition.
Hangover…. or Rasmus has once again been caught in grief and loss … he tends to be such a cheerful guy.
Martin looks annoyed.
He is always tense in larger gatherings and Rasmus’ sad face certainly does not lift his mood.
When Martin gets tense, it always helps him to run.
Today he is the host, so he offers Rasmus that he can use his treadmill.
It actually does not seem that Rasmus rejects the idea.
After half an hour, Rasmus looks far more relaxed.
Rasmus has returned to the party.
He has met Kristina before. It was a morning, a long time ago, at a cafe in Windenburg.
It was not a pleasant meeting for any of them nor does it seem that the reunion brings any joy.
Masato seems more accommodating, but there is something mysterious about him.
As time goes on, several of the party’s guests participate on the dance floor. It looks like everyone is having fun but beneath the surface there is still a lot of unresolved tension.
At regular intervals, Masato transforms into a bat.
We who know his true identity will probably not be so surprised.
I should not be able to say if Rasmus has asked a slightly too curious question because suddenly I find Rasmus and Masato in this painful situation.
It immediately makes Tusnelda ask Masato to leave the party before she can count to three.
“Who was that fool, Why did you invite him?” Martin asks angrily.
Tusnelda gives Martin a hug and assures him that Masato will not cause any more problems tonight.
Deep down, she thinks Masato has been pointing at himself as a guinea pig for the next many weeks.
One of the kittens looks like it is considering whether to take advantage of the fact that Martin is passivated to snatch a piece of cake.
Inside the living room, the atmosphere looks much more peaceful.
Kristina and Simon look quite relaxed.
This is the first glimpse we get of Flora today. She has been here all along, but she has spent most of the time talking to the trees. In addition, she has brewed some de-stressing decoction in the kitchen.
There are probably more of the guests who could have benefited from them.
The official part of the party is over and most people are going home now.
Tusnelda manages to summon Rasmus before he leaves.
Rasmus looks somewhat uncomfortable when Tusnelda asks him what he thinks of her colleagues.
“I assume they are as they should be,” he answers evasively.
“It’s probably just my mood that makes me unable to accommodate new acquaintances …” he continues apologetically.
“I’m sorry Tusnelda … I have a hangover and I really feel I have to go now.”
Then Rasmus leaves.
Martin struggles to gather the dishes. Dirty plates and glasses have been left everywhere. Simon sits half asleep over one of the left over drinks. Martin does not get much help.
Tusnelda has gone down to the garden to look for Flora, but It seems like she has gone home.
Her feet automatically find their way to her bed.
The cleanup can wait until tomorrow.
Without further ado, she crawls into bed and sleeps immediately.
What Tusnelda does not know is that the tense atmosphere is not over yet.
Rasmus is in a fit of rage in the process of maltreating their rubbish bin.
Martin is summoned by the noise.
“Rasmus! What are you doing?”
Rasmus is terribly embarrassed, but he has a hard time letting go of the anger, so Martin tries to reassure him.
Oh no. A familiar sound and my attention moves to Tusnelda.
Another alien abduction is about to happen.
Martin has invited Rasmus in and he listens attentively to everything that weighs on his friend.
“I’m terribly sorry, Martin … I’m so annoyed that I am getting relapses all the time when I try to avoid thinking of her.” says Rasmus resignedly.
“All ascent requires many attempts and one does not avoid falling until one reaches the top.” Martin replies comfortingly.
I should not be able to say whether Martin thinks of his climbing wall when describing this metaphor, but Rasmus seems to reflect on the explanation.
Rasmus has finally gone home and Martin finds one of Flora’s de-stressing decoction.
It has been a challenging day in many ways.
Tusnelda has apparently fallen asleep, but he can not calm down until all the dishes have been collected.
Now there should be no more interruptions tonight.
Poor Martin. He almost moves in his sleep.
Now news arrives from heaven.
Here Tusnelda lands safely on her feet again.
Tusnelda is pretty uplifted after after the recent trip and she enters the house energetically.
“Hi darling, I’m going to bed.” says Martin in a tired voice.
He does not even wonder why Tusnelda comes in through the front door at this point. He only has one goal in life right now.
Ten seconds later, he has fallen into a deep sleep.
Tusnelda is awake and energetic now and she sees with satisfaction that almost all the cleanup is done.
One last little dish and she can spend her energy on more important topics.
One of the kittens is lying and howling on the kitchen table. Overwhelmed by hormones and her first term.
In fact, it applies to all feminine cats in the family.
A trip to the vet for a neutralization is probably most required.
That kind of consideration Tusnelda does not worry about right now.
She is writing.
Gradually, all the cats calm down….
… but the place next to Martin in bed stays empty all night.
The first daylight awakens the young cat Futte and her howling starts again.
Futte finds Tusnelda in the same place she sat last night.
It’s morning, but almost nothing seems to interrupt a scientist who is in the process of describing something that no one else has described before.
I love this chapter so much! Rasmus is surrounded by kind and supportive people who care. He can’t take in their advice, though. Maybe they don’t understand. Maybe he needs a therapist. Maybe he needs to talk to Blue to see if she’d leave her husband to be with him! I surely don’t know! And… Something is up between Don and Clara, eh? Also the kittens on the table were so cute!
Thank you for your comment ❤
Should Rasmus meet Blue again? Maybe it will help him glorify her less?
In any case, I think he needs plenty of time to heal.
Don and Clara? Something is going on but Clara has probably already said it herself. She finds it acceptable to seek what she misses elsewhere.
Oh, Rasmus. He’s slowly getting better but it will take some time before Blue’s wounds stop hurting. Him imagining Blue looking at him in the pool was so sad. I agree with Rasmus, Clara. If you’re not fulfilled by your marriage, you should not seek your thrills elsewhere, but fix or break the marriage. Nobody wants to be someone’s steak.
Oooh Martin really has been training well! I’m pretty sure he has become much more muscular over the course of the story.
Don and Clara were the first to go home, hm? That puts her little speech about seeking things outside marriage from before in a new light. I wonder if she and Don are a little more friendly than they’re supposed to be. Oh, yup, that confirms it. Poor… err… who is Clara married to, again? It’s on the tip of my tongue… Bjorn. Poor Bjorn. Unless he is aware and fine with it, in which case this became very complicated XD
Hahaha, badly trained cats are nobody’s fault but yours, Martin. You should have trained them better xD
Oh dear, that party spiraled into negativity quite quickly. And between Rasmus and Masato, of all people. Oh geez Rasmus, your bad mood is no excuse to act like a caveman and knock over your friend’s garbage bin! Tsk, tsk. I hope he rediscovers his manners soon.
How many abductions does this make? What are they doing with her up there, really? O.o Ooooh and all of the female cats are going into heat at the same time. I hope there’s no stray males walking around the place. Otherwise they’ll have more cats than they can deal with very, very soon.
Hi! I’ve finally managed to read up to here, what a journey! A lot happened, I just can’t comment everything… What hit me the hardest was Blue/Alice secrets, she is definitively in a bad situation… I’m sad for Rasmus as well, but in her case I’m mostly wishing she can find a way out of that toxic marriage…
Tusnelda instead is really getting serious with her space and alien interests, she is abducted by that UFO so often! Luckily it’s just her and not Martin, or you would have an alien football team around the house by now 😛 Seriously, she is also quite lucky, both when the space rocket and when the reaper appeared I was so worried for her!
Oh, and the kittens of course! I was waiting for them when I wrote the last message, and they look so cute (also now that they grew a bit)!
I’m really curious to see what will happen in the future, among aliens, vampires, cats, simrays and the Rasmus/Blue plot, really anything could happen right now…
Thank you very much for your comment ❤
A lot has really happened since the story began.
Blues marriage is really toxic and her way of dealing with it is very destructive. She is a victim but also an executioner. Rasmus becomes an innocent victim because he has other ideals.
I have really come to like Blue despite her mistakes, so it’s hard to leave her with that legacy. I have some ideas that I try to brew on. I will not promise that it will get better. It depends on the eyes that see.
Regarding Tusnelda. She is abducted so often, but luckily Martin has gone free until further notice.