Magic, murder, intrigue, missing relatives, secret caves, fantastical creatures, royalty, nobility, romance...
Who ever said our lives were dull?
To follow our story, use the sidebar links and start at the beginning of it all...

Keish- April 1, 2004

April 1, 2004

Dear Arri,

Are you okay?

Imato thinks you haven’t written back because I was bullying you again. (His words.)

My questions didn’t upset you, did they?

Maybe I’ll get a letter from you today…

I’m completely stuck on my lesson plans. Maybe I’m not cut out to be a teacher after all. (Not really, I’m just feeling obfuscated, as Liop would say.)

April 2nd

I still haven’t heard from you. I suppose you’re busy getting ready to go to Odsreq though.

A soft pulsing light awoke me this morning.

On my desk was a magnificent winged lion of blown glass. It was sitting atop a note from Papa.

“Your mother said I would know when I should give this to you. She gave it to me the day she died. I’m not sure what you are to do with it, but the time has come and your mother seemed confident that you would understand.”

The light was coming from deep inside the lion. I pick it up and examined it thoughtfully. The magic coming from it was obvious, even discounting the light, but it took me a moment to determine the spell.

When I did, I wanted to cry. I had to break it.

It took a moment for me to become fully resigned to this idea. Then, with a heavy sigh, I lifted the delicate piece… and dropped it onto my marble desktop.

It shattered and the room was filled briefly with the sound of rushing wind.

When it subsided, it was replaced by my mother’s voice.

“Hello, my Keisha Nerys.”

I sank into my chair as tears gathered in my eyes.

“I’m sorry for the rather crude spell.” She gave a self-deprecating laugh. “I’m afraid I wasn’t feeling up to anything more elegant.”

Her voice was weak. She must have performed the spell in the final days before she died.

“The healers keep insisting that I cannot see you until I’m stronger, but I already know what they will not say. Not even your Aunt Jesse could save me now. Perhaps if I’d realized what was happening sooner… But I did not, and for that lapse I hope you forgive me.”

Tears were streaming down my face and my shaky breaths matched hers.

After a brief pause, her voice grew steadier. “The healers cannot, however, prevent me from using my gift to see how you will grow, who you will become. I am so proud of you, Keisha. Every parent hopes her children will be better than she is herself-- and you are. You’re smarter, kinder, more cautious… well, usually. And you’ll make an excellent teacher.

“You and Arri have managed so much more than your aunt and I . So much healing. You’ve brought back Nysa, and Winthrop. In many ways you children have brought him back too. You’re keeping him on his toes, I’m sure.

“You are no longer children, though, are you?”

Another pause and I could tell she was getting weaker.

“I’m afraid I cannot hold this spell any longer. I’m sorry you’ll have to sacrifice this winged lion. I’ve used it for many years in place of my mirror to focus my divination.” Her voice was faint. “I love you, my Keisha Nerys. I love…”

And she was gone.

I don’t know how long I sat, crying, staring at the shards of the delicate lion.

Eventually the tears stopped and I reached out a hand, hoping. Holding my hand flat above the desk, I began to gently reform the glass in my mind. I wasn’t sure I could manage something so complex. (Vases tend to be simpler.)

It turned out rather well. Though I think one of the wings is a bit crooked now.

There was a soft knock at my door as I finished. “Come in,” I called.

Papa entered, shutting the door softly behind him. He looked at the lion. “The light stopped.”

I nodded. “I had to smash it.”

“Yes, I thought it was a glass missive. Your mother hadn’t made one in years, though. Did you see her?”

“It was just her voice. I think she may have been too weak.”

He nodded slowly. “That would explain it. She and your aunt had made the spell very elaborate over the years, creating perfect likenesses of themselves, like reflections that could move and talk. Jezreel created missives that could reform themselves after the message was given. Your mother started using things you wouldn’t have to break.”

I looked at him curiously.

He laughed. “Your mother was never good at reforming things. A smashed glass ball would become a strange mass of sharp edges.” He picked up the lion and examined it. “You’re quite good at it though.”

I smiled as he handed it back to me. He reached into his pocket and handed me a yellowed piece of paper. “I thought you might like to read this also.”

I gave him a questioning look as I took it, but he just walked to the door. Unfolding it gently, I saw my mother’s handwriting.

“Quin returned all of her letters when Jezreel died,” Papa said from the doorway. “I have them if you wish to read more.” He closed the door behind him.

The date on the letter I held was only days before my mother died. Her handwriting looked shaky. It must have been the last letter she wrote your mother.

I’m going to simply transcribe it for you in its entirety. I think you should read it.

“October 23, 1993-- Dear Jesse,

No, I forbid your trying to come to me. You have been too ill and are still too weak. Besides, I fear not even your power can save me now.

The healers keep sending Keish away, blast them. I’ve had to content myself with scrying spells and divination.

She is going to be beautiful, Jesse. Such a good woman. And I will not be here.

I’m going to form a missive spell for her. I’m too weak to make it elegant, but a glass missive will serve. All I have is my winged lion.

You know I have always tried to keep a delicate balance in divination, but I feel I must tell you this-- she is worried about Arri.

It’s many years away, but her concern comes through strongly.

I have tried focusing on Arri to determine the trouble, but I am not strong enough. I’m sorry I cannot tell you more.

I think… I feel that maybe you should form a missive also. You’ve always done them so well. The day may come when Arri will need it. Until then, your spells were always the best for disguising the extraordinary as the ordinary.

You may not have the gift of divination, but you know Arri. Perhaps you can sooth away her future troubles without any details.

I am so tired, Jesse. So very tired.

I fight it, but I fear I must leave my dear Adlen and my sweet Keisha soon.

And you.

I love you, sweet Jesse.


PS Images of Imato were more clear, for he will spend much time in Adya. Such a strong good man. He is so like Quin.”

I don’t know what else to say, Arri. I don’t know if your mother formed a missive for you or not. If she did, perhaps it will help you now.

Are you ready for your trip? I’m sure you’ll be headed to Odsreq soon.

Imato wants a report on Glory and the foal, of course. The other day he nearly insisted I perform the divination again, in case I got the date wrong the first time. Honestly.

Love Always

Go to NEXT Letter

No comments:

Post a Comment

Leave us a little note-- Hermes or Clotho will be sure to deliver it!