lost on the way

She left her life on Monday, and instead she went to Wednesday. Big step, small days, and half the week to go before she got to Sunday and counted down to zero. It had almost been a relief to do it, and to walk away from the parching shelter of her homeland and her palace, to choose action and the possibility of success over passivity and the knowledge of failure.

She left her life on Monday, and she turned it back to Sunday, spinning the wheel backwards into a world of lies and murder and crocodiles, drought and deceit and damage, all for the sake of a dream. But at least it was somewhere to be going to. At least there was a hope in hell.

She tied her hair back and hunted whales; she cultivated a cold-eyed glare and hunted bounties; she kept her head down and looked for clues. And with Igaram to keep her sane, and Mister 9 to keep her company, it really wasn't that bad. It was a life. It had its moments. She was good at it.

She smiled and folded her arms and organised. She was extremely good at organisation. It gave her something to do with her time while she was waiting for the final moment, for a revelation in hieroglyphs, for the words that would hold the truth. It was a life. It had its moments. It could make her smile.

It took the imminence of death to make her realise that the masquerade was over and that she would have to start again, leave Miss Wednesday behind and be Vivi once more (but was she really the same Vivi? How could she be?), climb into the Going Merry and remember where she'd been going in the first place.

It wasn't that she'd been wrong; it was just that she had missed a step somewhere on the way, for it to have ended so badly. It wasn't that she'd been cruel; she hadn't cared enough to be cruel. But she must have been mistaken, somewhere, somehow, for it to have ended as it did, for her to need to start again.

She left her life on Monday, but at least she was going somewhere.

She left her life on Monday. Next time she'd get a better map.

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