2 April 1638

I'm going to run out of space here soon. I guess that's bound to happen! It happened to my mama, anyways, and I keep a journal because she did too.

Kurloz came over today and I made him supper. He says he loves my cooking. He's just the sweetest! And so handsome. I know I'm an orphan and I don't have any sort of dowry, but he says he doesn't care. He says he likes me, not my family or my money. It makes me blush, I'm sure, but he says that's adorable, too.

I'm glad I can talk to him. I can't really tell Nepeta how I feel about Mama and how it still hurts-I'm her older sister! I have to be there for her! But my friends, and Kurloz especially, I can talk to. He's so kind about it.

Porrim keeps telling me to be careful, but by her own admission she doesn't trust any man further than she can throw him. So I'll take that with a grain of salt.

4 April 1638

Kitty's been in love with Karkat for a while now, and…I know he doesn't love her, but I wish he wasn't so damned rude about it. She doesn't really understand subtext, and he's made to everyone, but especially to her.

I don't like him much, him or his brother. I can't imagine my mama ever being in love with someone like them. Kankri is pretentious and won't stop talking and whenever I try to explain to him that us women have some problems, too, he just talks right over me. Karkat is rude and loud and he won't let on that he cares, ever. As far as I'm concerned, they both need to grow up.

But they'd say I do, with my silly romantic ideas of love, so I don't know. I just think everyone should be happy with someone else! And couples are so darn cute! I don't understand how anyone doesn't love romance. It's just so sweet!

Well, I can't matchmake anyone right now-I have my own love life to deal with. Time to go meet Kurloz again!

7 April 1638

I want my mama to meet Kurloz. I know it's silly, but I want her to approve of him. She knew a lot about love! She loved so many people after all-her husband, and her best friend and her real mother and her first child and my sister and me, and she loved Nepeta and me so much. She'd love Kurloz, too.

He's a good listener. And he talks to me, too, about how he's worried about his father's approval and how his father is always telling him who and what he's supposed to be but he doesn't want to be that. His father is some powerful duke, someone my mama knew when she was younger, but Kurloz is better than that. My mama wasn't like her mother, so I told Kurloz that, and he looked so relieved. People don't have to be like their parents, and I hope Kurloz knows that.

9 April 1638

Horuss and I had lunch today. I still don't feel old enough to live on my own, so he comes by a lot to spend time together. His brother and my sister are very close, so I suppose he feels responsible to me. He's awfully chatty, but we don't actually talk about much-just little things, books or friends or the market. Sometimes it feels odd to be close to him, because he is much higher class than me and also a man, but my mama was friends with his father, so I'm sure it's fine.

12 April 1638

I kissed him today! It was a long time coming but today I plucked up some courage and drank a glass of wine and asked him if he wanted to kiss me. He said yes so I kissed him! His lips felt very nice on mine and it wasn't long but it felt lovely. I've been walking on air since. He's so sweet and kind…I think I love him.

But I want to be sure. I'm a bit young to be getting married, anyways-I'm only seventeen! I want to wait until I'm nineteen or twenty, probably, so I can be sure. And I don't think I want to have a baby, too, before I'm twenty. My mama just said she couldn't have children, so she wouldn't have had to know, and anyways I do want children.

I'm sure Kurloz will understand. He's so good about these things. That's why I like him!

15 April 1638

I wish Horuss and Kurloz got on better. Horuss's brother is important to my sister, so he's going to be in my life for a long time. And I love Kurloz, so I hope he's in my life for a long time.

Maybe they just don't understand each other. If I can get them to spend time together in a big group, maybe they'll talk more and get used to each other and eventually they can be friends. I'm not willing to lose either of them, so they best learn to get along!

I'll ask Horuss about it, even though we don't normally talk that way. Maybe he can explain why he doesn't like Kurloz. He's a good friend-he'll be able to tell me something.

17 April 1638

Well, Horuss told me today over tea that he thought Kurloz didn't like him very much! So that's easy. I told him Kurloz certainly has no problem with him-he just takes time to warm up to people. So that's that solved! My love and Horuss are going to be friends, and it's all going to work out. Maybe it'll even be like my mama's family, with all three of us someday being best friends!

I'm so happy today. I thought perhaps they had some fundamental disagreement about politics or some deep-down personality clash. And it just turns out it's just a misunderstanding! This is the sort of thing my mama always told me was important-good communication-is going to fix this problem, too.

I just need to worry now about Nepeta and Karkat. I know she likes him, and I know he does not like her. I just don't know how to fix it. I could try to tell Kitty that Karkat doesn't like her, but I'm not sure she'd take it to heart or even listen to me. On the other hand, they're only thirteen. She has plenty of time to grow out of it.

Or, I hope so, anyways.

19 April 1638

Kurloz is so sweet. We were kissing today, and he pulled away from me and rested his forehead against mine so our noses were just barely touching and said, softly, "You are so wonderful."

"So are you."

"Meulin, you are so gorgeous you drive men to sin."

"You're handsomer than the prince himself."

"I don't think handsomer is a word," he teased.

"I don't care."

He kissed me again and I felt like I could fly. For all I know, I can.

Nepeta thinks I'm mad, but she won't stop obsessing over Karkat, so she's one to talk. I told her no kissing until she's sixteen, and I know my mama never told me anything like that but I worry about her. I have to raise her now and I'm too young.

I'm terrified. Have I mentioned that? I need to raise my little sister like my mama raised me, and I'm not old enough, and I don't know how. She doesn't have anyone else besides me. That's another reason I can't get married for a while-I can't get married and go live with my husband until my sister is at least seventeen or eighteen, so until I'm twenty-one or twenty-two. That's a little old for me, but if it's Kurloz, not so old for him. I'm sure he won't mind. He's so kind about me being an orphan and all.

I should talk to him about that, though. He knows Kitty means more to me than anything. Like I know how his brother means everything to him. If we're going to be in each other's lives, we have to be able to get along with the important people in them.

22 April 1638

I sat down with Kurloz today and we talked about some things. I told him about how I can't possibly get married until Nepeta's old enough, because she's my sister and I have to raise her, and he told me he'd wait a thousand years to marry me. I remember when we first met and he was so shy all the time, all closed in on himself because of his father. Now we can sit down with some tea and just talk about our future and our feelings, and it's okay.

It's good. My mama talked a lot about her relationship with her husband, and this seems pretty close-we love each other, talk a lot about how we feel and what we want, and can make compromises (like agreeing to wait until Nepeta's old enough to have our family together).

We also talked about his father today. He gets so stressed out about how much his father wants from him, to be the next duke and marry a rich lady and have five sons. He just wants to go to university, marry me, and have a son and a daughter. He wants to be an intellectual, and if he must be a duke, he wants to be a good and just one. I think that's so cute! He promised he'd help me, too, because he knows how hard it is for women. He's a good man-nothing like his father.

Like my mama, I found a good man. I just wish they weren't so rare.

24 April 1638

I love spending time in the village with my friends. I think when Kurloz and I are married, I'll come into town every day to spend time with them. Latula's fun and full of energy, Porrim's smart as a whip, Aranea can spin stories all day, Mituna's clever and witty, Damara's sweet as pie and funny too, Rufioh's friendly and bold, Kankri's eloquent and smart, and Horuss is amicable and quite brilliant. Of course, Latula and Mituna can both be really reckless, Rufioh is a relentless flirt, Aranea will blather on even if you try to look bored, Damara can be very cruel if provoked, Porrim will argue with Kankri all day if you let her, Kankri of course won't shut up and doesn't actually know what he's talking about, and Horuss…can be very dense, on a good day. But we're all human! I know I'm not perfect.

It's the best, of course, when Kurloz visits our village with Cronus and Meenah. I don't like Meenah very much-she can be awfully mean when she puts her mind to it-but Kurloz I like very much, and Cronus is mostly harmless, I think.

It also gives me a chance to watch how people interact so I can figure out who's best for each other. I know I'm very good at that. It's pretty obvious to me that Damara and Rufioh are a good match for each other, though I'm not sure I'll interfere. Mituna and Latula are obviously good for each other, and their personalities mesh well. I think Aranea and Meenah would be good together, although I don't know if either of them love women that way. I think, perhaps, that Rufioh might be good with Horuss, but I don't know if they love men, and I'm not as sure about them anyways. Much as I hate to say it, Horuss isn't always the best at people.

I'm glad Kitty likes the village, too, because I don't like leaving her at home all day. She has her friends, my friends' siblings mostly, and she'll stay out of my hair.

I wish my mama was still alive. I just want to be able to spend time with my friends without worrying so much.

27 April 1638

I had to go hunting today, again. I should teach Kitty how to shoot soon. Our mama taught me when I was thirteen, almost fourteen, but she didn't take me hunting until I was sixteen. I guess now it's my job to teach her how to hunt.

I'm not old enough to be raising her. Not old enough by half.

Maybe it'll be easier to do this once I'm married and have a baby of my own. Then at least I'll be old enough.

29 April 1638

Kurloz was by again today. It's so nice to kiss him. It makes me feel like I could fly! He's so sweet and romantic, too, always bringing by these cute trinkets he found in the marketplace in the city he knew I'd like.

I know that someday I'll want more than just kissing him, but there's plenty of time for that later. Right now…it's nice to just kiss him, have lunch with him, and be together. It's nice.

In the books, when people are happy, it's usually a sign that they actually aren't and need something else. But I think I'm really, properly happy. I mean, raising Kitty is terrifying and I have way more responsibilities than most of my friends, who have parents, but I love Nepeta more than I can say and Kurloz too, and my friends are wonderful, and I have a home.

I'll never stop missing my mama. But I know she wanted this for me, and for Kitty, because she loved us.

We'll be alright.