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So we managed to fit in another open house before the new term. Which was a bit of an eye opener.

Those sandstorms - I was sure they'd stopped, and I was really looking forward to being able to chat and breath at the same time. So we were all ready and Penny had turned up along with a nice looking though extremely heavily armoured man, who did at least take his gun. And ammunition. And something else which was probably ammunition too.  Um. Off. Take his gun off. Before he came in. He looked quite dishy when he'd taken all that stuff off and locked it in his vehicle. He's called Raven Valentine, which first part goes nicely with his lovely hair, but honestly I'd always thought that Raven was girl's name. I guess the universe is full of surprises.

So we'd gone upstairs and I was talking to them - he'd just turned up at the same time, he's not a particular friend of Penny's - and I thought I heard someone downstairs and I turned round and walked straight into Lily. I nearly died, I mean I hadn't heard her at all and there she was and I'd nearly walked into her, which given her mercurial temperament would probably have ended up being rather more painful to me than her.

She'd been gone ages - pretty uch since just before the storms stopped actually. She's been in the deep desert apparently, though doing what I'm not sure. And then the sand storms started again. I mean they really had to do that, didn't they. Right after I told Lily how nice the weather was. Voom. Honestly, if the sands are alive like the desertborn believe, I do wish they'd book or something. It is just so embarrassing after I'd told everyone it was good weather. She keeps saying I'm special, which makes me laugh, but sadly that doesn't extend to having nice weather. That'd be so funny, the guild house standing in an unsullied shaft of sunlight while the sandstorm whipped and blew around the outside.

She - Lily - seemed to be getting awfully worried about the amount of sand she'd picked up in the desert and was even suggesting she should have a bath, which, given what she most clearly is not, was quite a turn-up for the books.

Anyway Beeflin and Dr Nicotine - that is such a strange name - turned up and Lily got really worried about Beeflin seeing her dirty. She was in quite a state for a bit. I think she rather likes him but it was so unlike her. I got really worried. I'm not sure the doctor was awfully pleased Lily was back. Apparently a large quantity of cheeseburgers has gone missing, and despite Hella's attempting to claim the glory, I think I'd have noticed an unexpected bounty in our kitchens. And the doctor was looking at Lily when she said that.

I managed to get her to take off her boot so I could give her foot a little rubdown and get the sand out of. It is very fortunate she's not a cat, because those retractable claws of hers are very sharp, and they slide out when she's relaxing. I'm not sure she knows that, but I'm glad she enjoyed it. Well, right up until I opened my big mouth and asked to do her left foot.

She seemed - worried? upset? I'm not sure which. And then Beeflin asked if it was injured, though honestly I'd have thought if it was she wouldn't have been able to sneak up like that. And she very suddenly decided she had to be somewhere else.

I'm sure I heard her crying but when I went downstairs to see if I could help, she'd gone.

Why'd talking about her foot upset her so? I don't understand.

And Raven (the man), he really really does not like the desertborn. He was having quite a rant on the subject, especially after Lily had left. I don't think he's going to have an easy time of it here if he carries on voicing those opinions. On the other hand, he probably won't have a hard time of it for long. Not if the fate of last person with that sort of attitude is anything to go by.

And did you know Dr Nicotine's mother was desertborn? She let that slip during the conversation and I was so surprised. She certainly doesn't dress like one, though maybe that's something to do with this Sisterhood (or something like that -- but I can never remember the exact name) she's a member of.

I managed to get a picture too, so I'm saving that with this diary entry. It's quite good for that, this computer thing, though still pretty useless at pressing flowers.

There, got it

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