Fifty-two

Fifty-two

A Chapter by Isemay

Folding his arms across his bare chest, Kwes inspected his still pruny hands, “It wouldn’t be so bad if it were only the pretty girls I had to wash.”


“I can ask her if another duty can be found.” Cyran’s face flushed, the priest fidgeted with the nearly sheer vest he was wearing.


The goddess’ laughter preceded her into the room. “You’re the new favorite attendant in the baths. There are men and women marvelling that such an exquisite man has chosen to serve me. I’ve been praised for being so generous not only in granting you your beauty but in sharing it with the rest of my worshippers.”


He gave her a sour look, “My father named me Riellan.”


The look on her symmetrically lovely and very human face was almost smug, “And yet you’re here in my temple. The elven gods have no claim on you, your father saw to that.”


“He doesn’t encourage reverence or worship of any god, it’s true.”


“The children of a god belong to that god. We were surprised when your father gave his daughter away.”


“The divinity said he believed it was done for a purpose.” Cyran inclined his head. 


“Call him your father, little one, however angry he is it’s the truth. And I suspect he was right. Odos may be a trickster and nearly unbearable at times, but he was always closer to his mother than his brother was. There may be no point in trying to keep the stones from Syreilla, she took Isca’s first and destroyed her puzzle temple with one small application of dragon’s fire in the right place as if she’d spent decades studying how. 


“She took my stone from a room that should have been impenetrable, even I had forgotten about the cavern beneath that we had covered over. The stone was heated and then struck, I was told. It shattered and allowed her in without difficulty.


“And today, in the daylight, she stole Unren’s stone from its watery vault.”


Kwes had to laugh and, at the goddess’ annoyed look, he waved his hand, “My sister swam through flooded mine tunnels once just to have a look at some stones the dwarf priests brought to her mine. That one was probably easy for her.”


“Tell me.”


With a gesture servants dressed much the way that he and Cyran were brought in trays of fruits and decadent looking bite sized morsels arranged prettily. He took a seat where she pointed with a smile.


“I don’t know much about it, a dwarf priest told the story. She was sour with him for interrupting her while she was looking at the stones in the room of light, whatever that is, like a jeweler. He said she shouldn’t have been able to touch them, the stones should have killed a thief, but she wasn’t being malicious.”


“The intent matters.” Eludora smiled faintly. “She isn’t stealing them, she’s borrowing them. That’s a small relief.”


“How many are there left for her to get?” Kwes asked as he took a bite of melon.


“Of ours? Unless she intends to steal her grandfather’s, something not even Odos could condone, only one. Silfeya will be on her guard. Isca has come to aid her in watching for Syreilla and trying to secure her stone. I think the goddess of war is enjoying herself. It’s like a hunt for a very clever creature.”


He inclined his head and picked at the food on the trays sourly. 


After a time Cyran asked carefully, “You seem angry, cousin. Is it your duties?”


“No, I’m annoyed with my sister for using me as a distraction when I had hoped to help. All my life I’ve wanted to work with her and she drops me into a cell,” Kwes glanced up at the goddess apologetically, “a nice one but still a cell, at the first opportunity without giving me the chance to show her what I can do.”


“When she spoke to me…” Cyran frowned, “She said that she had been locked in a hole. If she completes the tasks set for her she will be free to come and go.”


“It isn’t only her grandmother’s freedom at stake.” Eludora sighed and leaned back. “I wouldn’t risk anyone else’s interference either. If she spent decades making careful plans… would you bring someone new who hadn’t been privy to those plans, no matter how warmly you felt about them, and risk-”


Kwes stood abruptly and went to look out of the window. He wouldn’t. He knew he wouldn't. It still felt as if he’d been tossed aside and cheated out of something. The moment she came back he was going to give her an earful and then head home to Withia. Let her come to him if she wanted to have a brother. She wasn’t who he’d always imagined and he was done following that imagined woman around.



© 2021 Isemay


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Added on February 2, 2021
Last Updated on February 2, 2021
Tags: thief, dwarf, elf, dragon, gods

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Isemay

Germany



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Spent some time away from here but I've come back to peek in and post again! Review my writing and I will gladly return the favor! I love reading other people's stories, and I try to review hone.. more..

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