2012-02-29, 09:57 AM (ISO 8601)
Re: Heroes of the Fall
Dinner at the Olm was something of a disappointment, it must be admitted. Although there was plenty to drink - something very heady procured from the juice of a cactus which the scarred man offered to Kalandor, as well as pure, pleasantly-cold water which Fayruz insisted on drinking - there simply was not much to eat. Most of it was a meal of dried desert roots, with a few desert quail roasted in their own juices offered up for Fayruz and her brother.
Originally Posted by Erik Vale
The people - who called themselves the Fayheran, a mark of their devotion to Fayruz - were beginning to grow lean, that much was certain. The weather was unseasonably hot, even for the desert, and dry. While there was enough for them all to drink, courtesy of the great river at their doorstep, the plants they scavenged from had begun to wither and die, and the beasts of the land were staying farther and farther away from hunting parties. Quiet, fleeting looks shared between Fayruz and the soldier betrayed that this was something that weighed heavily on her heart - even with half of their number headed out to reclaim the rocklands in the name of Fayruz and a united people, Fayruz could not conjure up enough food to feed the rest.
But Fayruz did her best to make her brother feel welcome; she invited musicians and dancers from her tribe to come up and perform for Kalandor, and they were all quite talented indeed! She offered, as well, to play her harp for her brother after they finished eating, to remind them both of the White City and what they must continually strive for. But they were doubly interrupted as the last of the quail was finished. The first was a bright beacon of light shining off far to the east, too bright to be any star. Fayruz turned her head to stare at it, and frowned. "A dragon?" she asked herself, softly. "Or something stranger... or a sibling?"
The scarred man, meanwhile, turned his head, then leaped up with a cry and pulled a child into the circle. The soldier started up, clenching his fists. "What are you playing at, Gamesha?" he cried.
"This child," the scarred man replied, "Ain't one of us. And he smells like rotting bodies." The scarred man leaned in, and breathed in deeply, and nodded to himself, licking his lips. "Like the ruttin dead."
Fayruz rose, making a gesture to place the child down, which the scarred man did. The scarred man then sat down next to Kalandor, his body loose and still, but his eyes more intent than they normally were. Fayruz, meanwhile, came down to one knee before the child. "I'm sorry," she said, softly. "Gamesha doesn't mean to hurt anyone, not any more. I know he's scary, but he's not going to hurt you... even if you are made of clay."
"My sweetest sister," the child replied, in Avyra's soft voice. And now Fayruz looked more deeply, and saw a spark deep within that clay child, one that smelled like the bodies of the slain at Dol Mazzah, that seemed as soft and elusive as silk, and she knew that Avyra was alive, and she began to cry with joy as the child continued.
"It is a joy to hear that you have survived these trials and are strong in your own right. I am so glad that you have finally found a true foothold and are secure in yourself. I, too, have found my destiny...I promise, sister, I will come to visit you soon. Be well."
The clay child fell silent, and Fayruz looked very seriously at it, blinking back tears. "Can you take a message to my sister?" The clay child nodded, and Fayruz said, "Tell my wonderful older sister that I am protected here, and that I know that Haramhold and Kalandor and Faden are all alive and well." As the child nodded, and vanished into the night, Fayruz drew herself up and said to Kalandor, smiling tearfully, "Avyra is alive!"
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