Into the Uttermost West

Kage Baker came to terms with most of the pains that accompany growing old. She didn’t like any of them, and was not above impassioned rants against the tyranny of stiffening joints and failing stamina. She quite gloated over the fact that her red hair did not go grey – like most redheads, it first turned gold and snow-white, so it stayed bright in the sunlight.

No, what she most hated – what she never, ever accepted – was reaching the age where her friends began to die. She finally blew up and forbad me to keep telling her when one of our Faire family died; she just did not want to know. She insisted on keeping her loved ones alive in her mind, and in writing if she could manage it …

As much as I miss her, as much as I would rather have lost a limb than have lost Kage, I am grateful that she herself took the last journey before our dearest playmates began to fall. Some people she loved immensely have gone on in the last 3 years; it would have hurt Kage dreadfully. This way, she hasn’t lost them, but met them again; greeted them at that far door, I hope and believe, with a fresh drink and a kiss.

Where we Faire people go must be amazing. Brilliant conversation, strong drinks and fresh, and one hell of a band. And those who knew Kage through her books instead of through Faire will find her – and maybe themselves – in the Avalon Casino, sitting down to fried oysters and champagne cocktails.

Last night, the lovely Mary Lynn Reed passed into the West. She was the wife of Tom Barclay, and one of my very first Dear Readers, as well as a friend of several years; she and Tom were a huge comfort to me when Kage died. She was a clever, funny, wise, crafty lady – made wonderful things with her hands, and wonderful things with her life. I will miss her, and I am filled with sorrow for her husband Tom.

She’s the first of my Readers to die. It’s really a bit of too much: still more of too much, in fact. But I won’t shadow her memory with my wailing and keening. What matters is not that Mary Lynn has died, but that she lived.

Bear Mary Lynn and Tom in your thoughts, Dear Readers, please.

Praise her with great praise!

About Kate

I am Kage Baker's sister. Kage was/is a well-known science fiction writer, who died on January 31, 2010. She told me to keep her work going - I'm doing that. This blog will document the process.
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4 Responses to Into the Uttermost West

  1. Pamela Duncan says:

    My condolences…I wil keep her and her loved ones in my thoughts and prayers….


  2. kathy allen says:

    So sorry for the loss of your dear friend, as well as your Dear Reader. Hoping that all will be most well for aher nd her beloved ones.


  3. Tom B. says:

    Very kind of you to tell her tale in this light, Kathleen. Thank you.
    The house echoes empty without her.


  4. Luisa says:

    My deepest and most sincere condolences, both Tom B. and Kate. While I did not have the honor of knowing Mary Lynn personally, just knowing that she was dear to you is enough for me to feel the emptiness left behind. Hugs and healing. May we all matter, in some small way, to someone for the time we have here. Live, love, and laugh. Those are great echos to leave behind.


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