What Makes Us Human

Cover image for What Makes Us Human: A Marchverse Short Story by K. A. Cook. Cover shows an archway set into a stone wall, the wall covered by a dull green creeper. A small peach sphere of light glows underneath part of the creeper at the top of the archway. Inside the archway is another stone wall behind a courtyard comprised of a few rocks, two spindly trees and a striped purple cushion. Title and author credit are written in a white, fantasy-style text, the type bright against the grey background.The third Mara and Esher Hill story. What Makes Us Human takes place five months after The Sorcerous Compendium of Postmortem Query and a little over two years before Love is the Reckoning.

Moll of Sirenne needs prompts in their girdle book to navigate casual conversations, struggles to master facial expressions and feels safest weeding the monastery’s vegetable gardens. Following their call to service, however, means offering wanderers in need a priest’s support and guidance. A life free of social expectation to court, wed and befriend does outweigh their fear of causing harm—until forgetting the date of a holiday provokes a guest’s ire and three cutting words: lifeless and loveless.

A priest must expand a guest’s sense of human worth, but what do they do when their own comes under question? Can an autistic, aromantic priest ever expect to serve outside the garden? And what day is it…?

Contains: A middle-aged, agender priest set on defying social norms around love; an alloromantic guest with a journey to undergo in conquering her amatonormativity and ableism; an elderly aromantic priest providing irascible reassurance; and the story of how Moll became Esher’s guiding priest.

Links: PDF (read in browser) | Patreon | WordPress | Tumblr

PDF, EPUB and MOBI editions are available for download from Patreon.

Length: 8, 062 words / 32 PDF pages.

⁕  Home  ⁕  Fiction  ⁕  Marchverse  ⁕  Mara and Esher Hill  ⁕  Previous in Series  ⁕  Next in Series  ⁕