Seven Jewels and seven threads. Find them, twine them,
bind them into a braid to discover how to unlock the secret of the Jewels. What
was pale becomes dark and dark changes to light. Sometimes
destruction is the way to end a cycle of tyranny. Blazing sun
and icy moons unite in the Yellow Jewel. You must go over
land, across the sea and back again. Seek the thread and
learn this lesson. What makes a home does not have to be a place. Fears
may lurk and fears are faced when one learns to trust.
turned and waved farewell to the Holders and their Chosen
who remained at the mages’ stronghold. All but she and Brader stayed
to tend to the living and the dead. Just days ago, the elderly
healer had appeared and had given prophecies to all. The moment Disa
had heard those words she knew she and Brader had to leave. Their
role in the destruction of the mages lair had ended. The overland
journey to Quato where they would board a ship to Thanis would take a seven
prodded her horned horse and caught up with her companion. “Must we
race like prisoners released from a dungeon?”
his steed. “Why not? I wish to reach my home as soon as I
thought. Hers had been a peddler’s wagon and then the tavern in
Pala. She didn’t understand his being drawn to a
place. “Thy home won’t run.”
laughed. “Thee are right, but some inner yearning pushes me to hurry
to High Sanctuary. What if the mages have established a refuge
She made a
face. “Didn’t Andalor mention a ship filled with Queen’s Guards and
mages that arrived in Quato around the time when thee did?”
more might have remained. I need to find out.”
supposed he was right but that wasn’t his real reason for the rush to return to
his home. He wanted to visit his mother’s grave to bid her
farewell. Did he really believe her spirit lingered on this plane
waiting to hear of the success or failure of Liara’s quest?
they arrived in Desert’s Edge where they purchased enough supplies for the
journey. She nearly suggested they stop at the Healers’ House for
medicinals, but could think of none they would need before they reached the
market in Quato.
of traveling from dawn to dusk brought them to the seaport town. On
the outskirts they passed the villa where she had received her
Jewel. “Remember our time here?” she asked.
a pompous fool I was. Attacking Valmir when he wasn’t the
enemy. Angering Liara and thee.”
reached for his hand. “Thee feared someone would harm her and keep
her from the quest.” She sighed. “I wonder how the others
were problems couldn’t they reach us on the inner path?” Brader
“I don’t know. I’ve
listened every night and the voices have grown fainter. Should we
stay here or go directly to the docks?”
his horse. “This is too far from town. We’ll find an
inn. Word of ships leaving for Thanis will be heard at one, but we
can’t leave for a day or two.”
nodded. “We have to sell the horses.”
arrange for passage. We’re too late for today’s animal market.”
inside the town Disa led him to the inn where she and Andalor had
stayed. They were in luck and one of the suites on the third story
was available. After leaving their packs in the suite’s central
room, they ordered a meal to be brought as soon as they finished in the baths.
time after returning to the suite, Disa opened the door for a serving woman
bearing a large tray of food. Disa inhaled the aroma of brewed
chokla and grinned. She slipped the woman a coin. Brader
entered from his sleeping chamber. He fastened his amber colored
hair at his nape with a thong.
our plans for tomorrow?” Disa filled a mug with her chosen drink.
horses. Find a ship. Purchase some extra food for the
journey. Ship’s food is plain and sometimes not tasty.”
have to wait long?” Though they’d taken coins from the mages’
treasury, if they were forced to stay too long their coins would vanish.
shrugged. “Who knows? I’ll slip down to the common
room. Someone there will know about sailings.”
lifted a banta leg. “No tragon.”
laughed. “Guess Liara told thee how little tolerance I have for
spirits. I’ll stick to ale.”
Though Disa had planned to stay awake until Brader returned, the soft
mattress lulled her to sleep.