Ellyra's Song: 7

Fiction By Ezra // 3/1/2009

“It may be of your interest to know the exact location of the Quest. We have decided to hold it in the Caverns of Clearwater, and on the slopes of the Sentinel Mountain,” he said. “Also, for those of you involved in last night’s incident, your punishment will be as follows: for Jon, Timothy, and Yule, six hours on the trees; for the rest, you will be helping Mr. Barbacker in the library for six hours. That is all.”
So saying, Darkworthy, along with Elegand and the rest of the professors, walked to the side of the hall and sat down there at a table reserved for members of the faculty.
“Six hours?” Jon moaned, slouching back in his chair.
He sat back up, however, when he noticed that neither of his friends were listening to him. Yule was staring at Timothy, who was nervously studying the edge of his plate.
“All right,” Yule finally said, standing up. “We’ve got to talk.”
“Yule, I’m not done eating,” Jon returned, weakly.
“Now.”
“We’d best talk now, Jon,” Timothy said quietly as he also stood.
Jon looked from one to the other and sighed. “Right,” he mumbled, and heaved himself out of his chair.
Leaving Seyanna and the youngerclassmen, Timothy and Jon followed Yule across the busy dining hall and toward a portico which lay just outside of the main doors. Even as they walked, however, Timothy became aware of several dozen pairs of eyes watching them from the tables – watching him in particular, and accusing him, even as Yule’s voice had done moments before.
As soon as they were outside, Jon shut the doors behind them. Timothy leaned against one of the portico’s pillars and looked toward the tree tops, away from Yule.
“I know what you’re thinking, Tim,” Yule began immediately. “But you seemed to have missed something. She’s a nobody with no skill, and she’s a cursed Agurri, which means that she shouldn’t be here on two counts. And yet she is. There is no way that they intend for her to graduate.”
Timothy did not reply.
Finally, Yule shrugged wearily and let out a long sigh. “Look, Tim, I’m sorry for being angry last night – I know that you mean to do right. But you have to trust me that this is the wrong struggle.”
Timothy was still looking away. “Does it really make a difference?” he replied. “They already hate us anyway. Just like they hate her.”
In the silence that followed, Timothy thought that perhaps Yule was considering what he had said. When he turned to look at his friend, however, he was met by a startling mask of pain.
“I’m not worried about them, Tim,” Yule said. His voice was strained and low, and his eyes were sharp with wounded anger. “She is cursed. Cursed with an ancient curse and a righteous curse. She is anathema.”
Timothy was speechless. If it had not been for the interruption just then, he and Yule might have stood like that for hours, with Jon cringing in the background. As it happened, however, the doors behind them opened, and the conversation was suspended.
“Master Timothy.” It was professor Darkworthy, who stood in the doorway. “You will come with us. Now.”

The dark upper room with the seven chairs was much the same as it had been on the previous night, save that there were only three professors present. It also seemed more insidious than usual to Timothy, who was not accustomed to being there as the only student.
Darkworthy, who was standing in the middle of the chairs, was staring suspiciously into Timothy’s eyes.
“When did you first notice the little girl?” he questioned.
“The girl?” Timothy was surprised. The question was not what he had expected.
“Perhaps the question would be better rephrased,” Lord Elegand interjected. He was sitting off to one side, swirling a cup of wine in his left hand. “What first brought her to your attention?”
“I – I saw that she was never with her class,” Timothy stammered. “During afternoon study, I mean. I just thought it was strange.”
“Have you had any strange dreams of late?” Darkworthy continued. “Or have you talked to any strange people?”
If Timothy had been surprised before, he was confused now.
“No,” he replied. It wasn’t until later that he recalled the dream he had experienced on the previous night.
“I think that these questions are enough,” Lord Elegand interjected, again. His words were flat and edgy. “Do you agree, Earl?”
The Earl of Kentworth, who was seated across from Lord Elegand, nodded.
“Then you may leave, Master Timothy,” Lord Elegand concluded. “But be warned; the Agurri child is not what she seems. You will do well to keep your distance from her.”

Three

“Though we may fortify ourselves in times of peace, we are never prepared for the dawn of war”
-William III, Warrior-King of Norland

The moon that night was full. From where Timothy stood, looking out of the Tower’s highest eastern window, he could see the wild landscape of the Middle Lands tumbling lower and lower, away from the fortress and toward the ocean. Most of it was covered in trees whose top-most leaves reflected the stars like a rippling, glittering sea. Sighing, he gripped the stones of the window pane and heaved himself through, landing lightly on a narrow ledge outside.
He had discovered the ledge one night while seeking refuge from his tormentors as a youngerclassman, and fancied it to be the remnants of an old battlement from the days before the Society, when wars between the kingdoms had been a regular affair. His hand groped across the stones until it found an old safety rope that he had tied there long ago. Then he began to guide himself along, shuffling slowly while he hugged the tower-side.
Eventually, he reached a place where the tower gave way to a stone staircase leading up to the roof. Climbing the familiar steps, he found himself looking across the top of the tower and over a more complete view of the land.
To the west, the mountains of the Eastern Divide rose far above the fortress, silent in there rugged majesty. They were like a jumbled line of ancient sages with long, snowy beards, watching the Middle Lands in an eternal vigil. To the east, beyond the forests, the ocean was visible as a silvery line, glimmering in the moon’s reflection.
Neither the mountains nor the sea, however, were what caught his eye first.
“Seyanna?”
“Timothy?” the girl said, surprised. “I - I didn’t know anyone else came up here.”
Seyanna was sitting next to Ellyra, about halfway up the roof.
“Only when I need to think by myself,” Timothy replied quietly.
“I’m sorry,” she returned. “We’ll be done soon.”
Suddenly, Timothy realized that Seyanna was fixing a bandage around Ellyra’s head and that her lap was full of medical supplies.
“Is she hurt bad?” he asked.
“I think Kyle was wearing a ring or something when he hit her,” Seyanna commented. “She has a cut on her forehead and her cheek. But I’m almost done.”
“Please, don’t rush,” Timothy returned.
Walking up the roof, he sat down awkwardly a length away from the two girls. A moment passed in silence, and then Seyanna spoke again.
“I told her not to speak because of her cut, but I know she wishes to thank you.”
Timothy sighed, but did not look over.
“I can’t help her anymore,” he said, resting his head in his hands.
“Is it Yule?” Seyanna asked, softly.
Timothy nodded.
“Why?”
“You don’t know?”
“No.”
Letting out a sigh, Timothy ran his hands through his hair.
“Did anyone ever tell you how Yule got in here?” he asked, looking over to where she was working.
Seyanna shook her head.
“Five years ago, the High Counsel decided to allow commoners into the school for the first time,” Timothy began, looking back out toward the ocean. “They were looking for young people of exceptional skill, and Yule was already famous among his own countrymen as a warrior. When he was eleven, he led a militia of farmers against a band of Agurri who were set on plundering his village, and he routed most of them. But there were a few who evaded him. When he returned to his family’s farm, it was burned to the ground; his family was dead.”
“I didn’t know that,” Seyanna said lowly.
“Yule and I are like brothers,” Timothy continued, looking down at his feet. “I can’t – I can’t ignore what happened to him. After we left the dining hall, he just looked at me, and there was this pain in his eyes.”
Seyanna opened her mouth as if to speak, but then closed it uncertainly. A stray gust of wind blew across the tower top, whipping her hair and forcing her to grab her supplies before they were blown away.
“It’s more than that, though,” Timothy began again. “Perhaps if it was only Yule, I could help her a little. I could get her books every now and again and such. Yule is hurt, but he is a better friend than that. He would forgive me, or we would just not speak of it.
“But there is a deeper seated hostility toward her – I have been told by a professor that it will not go well with me if I continue to help her. I cannot risk everything that Yule and Jon and I have worked for. I’m sorry.”
“So even your assistance will only go so far?” Seyanna asked in a hushed voice.
Now it was Timothy’s turn to be speechless. Noiselessly, Seyanna stood up and began to walk down the roof, holding the silent Agurri girl’s hand. When they reached the stair case, however, she hesitated, and turned back toward Timothy momentarily.
“There is something of greater weight here than just one little girl,” she said in a strange voice. “I pray that you will see it. Though, one little girl should be enough.”
Then she turned back toward the stairs, and in seconds, the two had vanished.
Timothy was left sitting by himself, uncomfortable with his own thoughts. Certainly Ellyra had heard every word he had said, and in his mind’s eye he could see her face melting from hope back into sorrow. But the choice had already been made for him; he could not go against both friends and teachers.
He sighed, leaning back against the cold tiles of the tower roof. Slowly, the past five years of his life began to march through his mind, like a silent army of dreams. Countless hours of monotonous study blended with horrific winter days spent outdoors, training to be a warrior. Injustices, hardships, and victories scoured themselves deeply into his mind as he thought back to the first day that he had entered the fortress’s gates.
Then, beyond it all, the faint image of a city formed in his mind, and then a quiet cobblestone street and a narrow brick building with a small, muddy garden out front, just as it had been the morning that he had seen it last, nearly five years ago.
“You must write often,” his mother had said, holding his face in her hands.
At the time he had not had the courage to tell her that the allowance would be one letter per year, sent on the last day of spring.
“You’ll do us proud, son,” his father had interjected, placing a hand on his shoulder. “Just remember where you came from. And don’t take bunk from anyone.”
He had nodded mechanically in return.
Then had come hugs from his six brothers and five sisters, tears from his mother, a saddled horse, a final goodbye, and a picture of his family fading slowly behind him as he rode away. Five years – his father and brothers would be proud of him if they could see how far he had progressed at the school.
Then his thoughts turned back to Yule and Jon. The three of them together had forged their way through countless difficulties since the beginning. He had often spent long hours in conversation with Yule, discussing how they would use their positions in the Society when they graduated.
“It’s people like them,” Yule would often say, referring to Kyle and his friends, “that we will always have to fight against. People who think commoners are dirt.”
Timothy sighed again. A cold wind was now blowing steadily around him, but the peace that usually came to him on the tower roof was baffled by his thoughts.

Comments

OH Ezra... Finally another

OH Ezra...

Finally another chapter but it only deepens the story and makes me want to read more even more!!!!

I'm so excited to see where you're going with this!

Kyleigh | Sun, 03/01/2009

WOW! Good job, Ezra! I like

WOW! Good job, Ezra! I like the way you're really upping the ante with Timothy--his friend, his teachers are against him helping the girl. Hmm...where are you going with this? You have me curious! Hope to read more soon!
*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*
And now our hearts will beat in time/You say I am yours and you are mine...
Michelle Tumes, "There Goes My Love"

Heather | Sun, 03/01/2009

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*
And now our hearts will beat in time/You say I am yours and you are mine...
Michelle Tumes, "There Goes My Love"

Ditto Kyleigh!

I want the next part so much... I want to know whether one really CAN trust Ellyra... I want to find out more about Seyanna... I want to give Kyle a very witty retort... and perhaps a well-earned slap... But of course I never would, even if I got the chance.
Oh... I bow to your writing skills.
*************************************************
In this sinful world there is no such thing as "peace" unless someone strong enough is willing to protect and defend it. -Norm Bomer, God's World News

Anna | Sun, 03/01/2009

I have hated the words and I have loved them, and I hope I have made them right. --The Book Thief

Thanks

Anna:

Feel very free to give Kyle a slap if you should see him around - but about those writing skills, you're much further than I was at your age, so keep writing.

Everyone else:

The next part isn't written yet, and probably won't be for awhile, but thanks for the enthusiastic comments.

Ezra | Mon, 03/02/2009

"There are no great men of God. There are only pitiful, sorry men whose God is great beyond measure." - Paul Washer [originally Jonathan Edwards]

Sweet! I like this new bit.

Sweet! I like this new bit. Especially the mysteriousness for "she's not who she seems......"

Sarah | Mon, 03/02/2009

"Sometimes even to live is courage."
-Seneca

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