Testimony

Testimony

A Chapter by Eddie Davis
"

After her powerful epiphany of her guilt, Rori explains what led her to such a life.

"

15.

Testimony

 





 

Half an hour later, Rori sat at a table in the empty great room of the Muddy Boot, sniffling back the ends of her anguish.   Across from her sat the Elven Queen and Drow Matron, while beside her, the Duchess sat in front of her a glass of mulled wine.

“Drink this.”  She commanded, and Rori complied, sniffling as she drank.

“I am very, very pleased by your outpouring of shame.   That is a first step to restoration:  remorse.  How old are you, Rori?”

“Fourteen.” She replied, and all three Elven women’s mouths flew open in surprise.

“Fourteen years old?!”  Zeatt asked in disbelief.

Rori nodded, “I was twelve when I ran away from home.   My father was one of the Emperor’s Barons and an Imperial Senator.”

“So you grew up in Aeropolis?”  Zeatt asked.

“No; my father kept his family at his estate 50 miles north of the city for most of the year.”

“And you ran away from home at 12?”  Aurei asked.

The girl nodded; a far away look in her eyes for a moment as she apparently recalled the event, “It probably was a mistake.”

“Why did you leave home?”  Eioldth asked.

Rori shrugged, staring at her wine cup, “I’m not really sure - I guess I thought I was too mature to live under my parent’s rule.   I didn’t really think it out.”

“So where did you go?”  Aurei gently pressed her for more information.   Alis had quietly joined the other ladies around the table, and at the bar, drying mugs and flagons, Krys and Brandi were also listening.

Rori glanced up at Alis, then around at the other Elven women seated at her table, “I didn’t know that there were so many Elves this far north, living in a farm town.”

Alis laughed, “Well, Aurei and I are the only two who grew up here, but there’s a whole forest full of them to the west of us.  Faesidhe Elves.”

The girl’s eyes widened, “Really?   I thought they were just a myth.”

The Elven ladies laughed and turned to Queen Eioldth who smiled sweetly, “Rori, do I look like a myth to you?”

“You’re a Faesidhe Elf?!   Sorry, ma’am…”

“No offense taken, child.   Yes, my parents were members of the Faesidhe community, though my father led a group that disagreed with the ruling council and so finally his group left the Great forest and now reside in their own kingdom.”

“Wow, how interesting.”  Rori glanced over to Alis, “You’re a half-Elf, right?    Are you a Faesidhe too?”

“No, just a common Elf.   Well, my mother was, I mean.”

Rori now turned to Aurei and Zeatt, “And you both are really Dark Elves?”

“Yes.”  Aurei replied.
“I have met a few Drow… they work for the Necromancer’s Guild, you see.   You both are quite a bit different then them.   I mean, you look like them, but you… act different… in a good way.”

“That is what surface living can do.”  Zeatt answered with a sigh, “I wasn’t like this when I lived in the Underdark, Rori, and I changed when I left the darkness and found the light of Yesh.”

Rori shifted, obviously uncomfortable at the mention of God.   She was still struggling to shake off years of the influence of evil upon her.

“Does Yesh make you uncomfortable, child?”   Zeatt asked gently.

Rori shrugged again, but nervously kneaded her hands.

“I imagine this is all new to you, isn’t it?”   The Drow matron inquired.

Rori looked up, “No, actually, my parents were followers.  At least they said they were, though to them it was more to fit in with a specific group of wealthy people and fellow senators.”

“But you rebelled, I assume.”

“It all seemed so… boring.   I don’t mean any disrespect, ma’am, but I wanted to do something exciting.”

“So you joined the Necromancer’s Guild?”  Aurei prodded.

“They sort of recruited me.   I went to Aeropolis and I didn’t know what to do.   There are really dangerous people there.   I went into this tavern looking for food and some men jumped me and drugged me and when I came to, I was locked in this horrible brothel.   They wanted me to… well, you know.   I was terrified, but I couldn’t get away.   My first… customer… was a wizard from the Guild and instead of sex; he began talking to me and asked me if I wanted to be free from that place.    Of course I told him I did, and he cast a spell and teleported us to one of the Guild’s safehouses.   He said that if I trusted him, he could help me train to become a Sorceress.   I found out later that this was one of the Guild’s favorite places to recruit potential sorceresses, as the brothels are often full of underage girls desperate to escape from them.”

“He kept his word and a few days later I was placed in a Sorceress school with about 20 other girls and women.   Our instructor was a lady that told us that we would find great power in sorcery and that we would no longer have to be afraid of anyone.   It sounded great, so I really applied myself to the lessons.”

“You seem to have moved rather fast for someone so young.”   Alis interjected. 

“I really did.   So quickly, in fact, that they pulled me out of class and asked me to join an assault team.   It was quite an honor and they gave me magic items and spellbooks - stuff like that.   Except for the undead you had to be around, it was really great.    I spent about half a year with my assault team until we were ordered to come to Thurgood.   They let me use that Sonic Staff and I felt really powerful; cold, ruthless and powerful.  I guess that was really dumb.”

“My child, the Guild is a master of manipulation of its members.  I can’t tell you how many of those Drow in my parish were approached by Guild recruiters in Aeropolis.   You need not feel bad for being fooled; that is the Necromancer’s Guild’s way.”

Rori nodded sadly to Zeatt’s words, “You know, when you are 14 years old and someone hands you a powerful magic item and tells you that your assault team is depending on you to protect them during this raid, you really think you are something special.   Up on top of that Silo, I didn’t really think about who I was blasting with my magic.  I don’t even think I would have cared if I had thought about it.    When we first came into Thurgood, the undead handlers set their creatures loose in the village while we stayed back in camp and worked on our cloaking spells.   I guess they did that so we wouldn’t see the villagers’ faces that we had killed. It makes killing seem like it is nothing.  It makes it easier when you don’t look at them as people.”

“But now you know the truth.”  Aurei said.

“Yes ma’am, but I can’t change what I did.”

“No, but you can change who you are.”

Rori nodded, “So what duties are you going to ask of me?”

Aurei sat back in her chair, “Every day you will get up at dawn and prepare breakfast for the night watch who are going off duty, as well as the morning watch who are just going to work.   You will clean the barracks at the Keep and you will do any chore that the Captain of the Guard requires of you.”

“Who is the Captain of the Guard?”  Rori asked.

Aurei smiled slightly, “Your chess opponent, Pectros.”

Rori let a slight smile creep across her face for an instant, yet that led to guilt for her earlier plan to manipulate the man, so she returned to her stoic expression.

“You will work at the Keep from dawn until an hour before noon, when you will come to the Inn and eat lunch, then will report to Matron Zeatt.”

Zeatt leaned in close to Rori, “Child, I feel that Yesh has asked me to serve as this town’s priest… or actually priestess… to replace Brother Darv, at least temporarily.   So you are going to assist me at the church during the afternoon.   Nothing too strenuous, but I hope maybe I can show you the seriousness of heart-felt worship of Yesh.”

 

“Rori, at suppertime, you will leave Matron Zeatt and come over to the Muddy Boot, where you will have your evening meal and then be trained by Alis, Krys and Brandi as a barmaid.   Here you will work until closing time, then you will be probably too tired to do anything other than go to bed, and I am assigning you a room here at the Inn.   You will work 5 days each week and you will have Worship Day and the day after off.”

The girl seemed surprised, “I’ll have time off?”

Aurei nodded, “I’m not making you a slave, Rori, you are a criminal that I am determined to reform and redeem.   When I am certain that you have changed and paid your due for the lives you helped end, I will release you from your Geis and you will be free.   The timeframe for this will be up to you, and Matron Zeatt has detection spells which will be cast to detect any sort of deception - if that is possible while under this Geis.   When we see sincere change, you will be released.”

“That’s fair.   M’lady, may I ask you something?”

“Go ahead”

“The little boy who’s father… I killed…”

“What about him?”

“Well, I-I… I was wondering… who is taking care of him?”

“Some of the townspeople - but nothing is settled yet.   Why do you ask?”

Rori again wrung her hands.   She fought tears filling her eyes, “I am responsible for his situation.   I wonder if you would allow me to raise him?”

“Raise him?”  Aurei was very surprised at the request.

“Yes, ma’am.   I know it sounds crazy.  But because of me, he is an orphan.   It is personal to him… his pain, I mean.   I want to… share in his pain.   I want to be purified by it.   You said I need to be redeemed, and I feel I owe it to him.”

“Well, that would be up to Luke.    I’m not sure he’ll be comfortable with it, but understand that you will still be expected to keep up the duties I just outlined.   You won’t have much time to take care of him with that schedule.   I suppose he could come with you, but that is up to him.   His father’s land belongs to him, though he isn’t living there alone.   If he agrees to your idea, I would consider you living there, with him.   But believe me; I will be watching you like a hawk.”

“Yes ma’am, I understand.  I hope he agrees; I really want to try in some small way to make his life better… I don’t know what more I can do.”
Queen Eioldth leaned over and patted the girl’s hands, “If you continue to follow your heart, there is nothing better that you can do.”

 

 



© 2014 Eddie Davis


My Review

Would you like to review this Chapter?
Login | Register




Reviews

"They wanted me too… well, you know." You have the wrong form of to, here.

Posted 10 Years Ago


Eddie Davis

10 Years Ago

Indeed I do, thank you!

Share This
Email
Facebook
Twitter
Request Read Request
Add to Library My Library
Subscribe Subscribe


Stats

311 Views
1 Review
Added on November 10, 2013
Last Updated on May 29, 2014
Tags: Epiphany, guilt, Sorceress, magic, Necromancer, religion, Drow, Elf, Cleric, Fantasy, Adventure

The Chronicles of Aurei Book 2: The Knights of Northmarch


Author

Eddie Davis
Eddie Davis

Springfield, MO



About
I'm a fantasy and science-fiction writer that enjoys sharing my tales with everyone. Three trilogies are offered here, all taking place in the same fantasy world of Synomenia. Other books and stor.. more..

Writing
One One

A Chapter by Eddie Davis


Two Two

A Chapter by Eddie Davis