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Old 11-05-2006, 04:32 PM   #1
Inwe Ringil
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Talking Chapter 6-the Disapperances

Domitan sat at his desk staring out the window. Three weeks had transgressed since he had been introduced to the Will and the Word. He had grown stronger of body and of mind. He could now lift large things with his mind and hold them there for an indefinable length of time. But he would grow weaker the longer he held it there, showing that actions taken on by the mind used energy just the same way as doing it physically. Once he had tried to lift the large rock in the pine clearing, he had succeeded, but he found that he, himelf, had found that in lifting the rock he had been forced into the ground, up to his shoulders.

Meneldur was also stronger, he was now the size of a small house. He and Domitan could now contact each other anywhere within six leagues. He now lived in a secluded valley, which was riddled with caves, two leagues away.

Meneldur was outside with Luchius, who was teaching him how to ride the winds and how to sense up and down drafts.

Domitan turned his gaze to the open notebook in front of him. This report had been due a week ago, but he had been given an extension, it was now due the next day. The report was about the Tim’dalian, the Disappearances; he was to cover the main theories of what caused them.

Domitan was frustrated, his notes didn’t help him. He flung the ink bottle, a quill, and his notebook, into his satchel. As he hurried down the halls his angry footsteps echoed through the midday quiet that had descended upon the Dragonkeep.

He greeted Belith, the librarian with a grunt. He went quickly to the history section and began scanning the tall shelves. He climbed a ladder and pulled a book out, and scanned its contents: it wasn’t what he was looking for. As he jammed the book back into its spot; it caught something. Domitan peered behind the volume that he was putting back; there was a small, black leather book; he pulled it out and replaced the other one.

He slid down the ladder and opened the book:

{b}{i}Alsine 18th 764 D.E.{/i}{/b}
{indent}{i}Today I saw my sister Alyss, kissing Gille’ade. I told father but he cared not. He only said that since I am older I should be looking into such romantic things. I told Zail, he understood. He has no more desire to be intimately engaged with another being than I do.{/i}

Domitan was taken back. 764 was 303 years ago, the year of the Tim’dalian. The date was barely a month before. He stuffed in into his bag and left.

{b}{i}Alsine 21st 764 D.E.{/i}{/b}
{indent}{i}Today father held a banquet, it was one of those stuffy social deals. The king, Alamarse, attended. I would have been fine, but he insisted that me and my Dragon, Zail, be present. Zail was pleasant because mother’s and father’s Dragons, Gaillinia and Zaldine, were there. Drailisone was there and we have loathed each other since birth. When we were small, our parents would hide all the knives when our families visited each other.
{indent}{indent}{b}{i}Almare {/i} {/b}

The other entries showed that Almare’s entire family was Dragonriders, but they did not live at a Dragonkeep. The king had given the Dree’gan family a plot of land, with a castle on it. Domitan was lying on his bed entranced by this young Dragonrider’s life. Then he came to the fateful entry of Tarilsine 15th 764.

{b}{i}Tarilsine 15th 764{/i}{/b}
{indent}They’re all gone; mother, father, Alyss and their Dragons. They’re gone.

They way all of the words were sloppy, smudged, and smeared, compared to his neat and precise entries before, he could tell that Almare was distraught. As he read further into the dreadful entry, the ink had run and showed teardrops.

After that point, the journal became a record of all the theories, no matter how insane and inane. Domitan read over all of them, he had not even known that there were more than two. A note written in red ink at the bottom of the last page caught his attention.

{indent}{b}{i}There is something I have noticed, none of these deal with the fact that all the {indent} Riders that disappeared were flying at the time. My personal opinion is that it was {indent} something to do with the sun. For, on that day, I correctly remember that there was a {indent} large spot on the sun.{/i}{/b}

He hastily lit the lamp and began scrawling out the outline for his report. The main theory of the disappearances was that the elves had used their strange powers to translocate all of the Dragonriders that disappeared. King Alamarse had rejected the elves and closed all connections between Impiltur and Galen. Hundreds of Dragonriders had vanished, leaving grieving families. Since then the Riders had been in a steady decline, the elves were no longer Riders and the common people were reluctant to be come one.

Within a few hours, Domitan had finished the final draft. He had added the two cents about the sun, because in his gut he felt that it might very well be true. As he sprinkled sand on the paper to absorb the excess ink, his stomach grumbled painfully. He glanced out the window and saw that the moon had risen high in the sky, and he had not eaten since midday.

He blew out the lamp, before he left the room. As he passed the great hall, he paused to listen. The gentle notes of a harp floated out to him, along with the soft singing of a bard. A smile tugged at the corners of his lips, it was a story of Carlsine and Aliana.

He went down to the next door and walked in. Nobody was there, but the torches were sputtering in their sockets. The kitchen maids must have gone to the Great Hall to hear the minstrels. Domitan glanced around the kitchen seeing if he could find some food. He gaze fell on an apple pie that was three-quarters gone. He seized a fork, stood there, and devoured the deliciously sweet, warm, cinnamon-apple pie.

As soon as he was done, he set the dish and fork in the large, wooden washing tub, and went to retrieve his paper. Then he walked to Wiley’s office and knocked on the door. “Come in.” came the curt reply.

Domitan hesitantly pushed the door open, “Hello, Domitan, have you finished that report yet?”

He flinched at that accusing note in the Professors’ voice. “Yes, I have,” he replied, but in his head he was thinking – a dangerous thing – {i} Damn straight. {/i}

“Put it on my desk, then leave,” Wiley said without looking up from the scroll he was reading.

Domitan did so and as he was closing the door Wiley said, “And remember to call your superiors ‘sir’.”

“Yes, Sir,” Domitan muttered as the wooden door clicked shut.

~ * ~

Shar’tugar saw Domitan leave Professor Wiley’s office a low hiss escaped him. He was standing in an alcove behind the statue of some unimportant statesman. His coal colored cloak was wrapped around him, despite the warm weather. His cold white eyes flicked up and down the hall – nobody was coming. Shar’tugar ran down the stone hall, out the Great Doors, and out of the Dragonkeep’s compound. He quickly left the cobblestone streets and into the slums. There he entered a shabby tavern called ‘The Cracked Pot’. The name was an accurate description of its patrons and its goblets. The men were always strange and staggering, even when sober. Furthermore, the clay flagons were always chipped whether they were new or not.

Shar’tugar pulled up the cowl of his cloak to cover his conspicuous white hair. Then he cast his cold gaze about the smoke hazed room, it stopped on his master, Mawgrin. He was sitting with a sandy-haired young man. He walked soundlessly across the floor to the dim table in the corner.

Mawgrin’s blazing red eyes flicked up, “Yes?” the his escaped his thin lips.

“The boy ate something in the kitchen , then turned in an overdue paper,” Shar’tugar reported.

“Does he show any signs about knowing his heritage?”

“No, Master. But the Dragon’s effects seem to be taking hold sooner than most.”

“You’re dismissed,” Mawgrin said with a negligent move of his hand.

Shar’tugar was used to this, but he did not like being treated like a servant. Yet, he would obey.

As soon as his apprentice was out of earshot, he turned back to his companion. “What did you do to him, Cardac?”

“Black snake poison from the mountains on the Harlec Desert. Very painful, but appears natural,” Cardac said in a hushed voice, such things were never safe to speak of.

A sadistic smile spread across Mawgrin’s face, “Good job friend,” he congratulated. “here are the other five silver marks.”

There was a small {i} ‘clink’ {/i} as the coins changed hands, then the two men parted company.

~ * ~
Remember, only dead fish swim with the stream
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