The Journeys of Chaydion Pain
The old scribes hands shook as he slowly dipped the quill, the veins of age stood out around his gnarled fingers. Yet the tip of the quill set gentle into the ink, then back upon the paper. Slowly the letters took form, those forms became words, and the words became sentences. At each stroke of the quill the old scribe’s life ebbed a little more. Soon there would be no life left to create the letters, to write the story.
“Master Tobius” a gentle voice called. “You must rest Master for it is late. Tomorrow you can finish what you have started today. Please Master.” The old man did not listen, instead the quill slowly made its way across the parchment. A young man stepped into the light of the candles as they burned brightly upon the writers’ small desk. “Master Healer will surely be angered if he hears I did not make sure you got your rest. Please Master lie down and rest.” the young man pleaded with his teacher.
Without a word the old scribe set his quill down and turned to look to the young man, a boy in his eyes. “It is done Chaydion. It is done” His eyes closed a moment, then he raised his hands as Chaydion stepped forward. “No, there is no time to rest for me Chaydion. My story is complete, the history has been told.” The man turned to cough and again raised his hands to bring Chaydion to a halt. “My life is at its end lad, surely you must know that. The guild of Sorasmir is no more, but its history has been recorded. I have done my task. Now I can rest.” With that the old scribe tried to stand, but his legs would no longer hold him. Before he could fall Chaydion was at his side and helped the man to his bed.
“No Master, not now. Not now. I have so much more to learn.” Chaydion pleaded of his Master. “I do not know where to start, what to do. You cannot die now for your task is not complete. There is more life in you I know it.” “No”, replied the old man gently. “I have drawn to long from the Well of Life. I have covered the history of the Sorasmir Guild these last two hundred years. I have written of their demise, their long path to destruction. They were not always evil. Many good men and women died in honor for that guild before the darkness came. Now it is my turn. You must carry on”, the words slowly trailed off to silence.
“But where shall I go, of who shall I write?” Chaydion asked. The old man’s eyes opens slowly. “Go seek the one called Vamar Aeridar in the town of Roe. He is a Knight-Errant for the guild of the Knights Of Andal.” The man stopped a moment, his breath now raspy and low. “Tell him”, the old man paused. “Tell him of Daramon and the destruction of Sorasmir. Tell him as I have written it”. The old man now laid back, his eyes now glazed and sightless. “Why Master? What is the evil of Daramon to this man Vamar?” Even as Chaydion said the words he knew the answer in his heart.
“You must seek him out Chaydion. He must know about his brother. Tell him the Book Of Destiny is in grave peril. He will know, it draws him even now. Go.” With that the old man’s eyes closed, he breathed once, then once again deeper, then breathed no more. Chaydion stood and looked down upon his Master, now gone to where Chaydion could not yet go. As tears began to slowly fall he moved about the room, straightening up the papers, putting books away, all in the same manner as he had done for nearly sixteen years. Too stunned was he as he let routine guide him about, to shield his mind from the pain.
Then he approached the writing desk, the one last place he had not gone. For surely he knew there written were his Masters last strokes of the quill, his last essence and being were now on that page and Chaydion did not wish to see them. Carefully he placed the lid upon the inkwell and gentle placed the unused parchment within the slim shelves atop the desk. He would not let his eye look down upon the words written there. He could not.
How long he stood over that desk Chaydion did not know. Then the faint smell of perfume and a ladies hand on his shoulder brought him forth. “Chaydion?” Esmeralda whispered. “Are you alright?” It was as if a dam within him had broken for now the tears began to flow freely. Chaydion crumpled to the floor sobbing, no longer able to stand. “You knew his time was at and end Chaydion” the gentle words echoed in his mind. “It is your time now. You are now the writer of history, the Keeper of the Records. In time this sorrow will pass and you will look back with love upon your Master.” Esmeralda knelt beside the young man and stroked his hair from his eyes. As deep pools of blue water were her eyes as she held Chaydion in her gaze. “You must take this task Tobius has given you, as he took the task that was given him. As all Keeper have done through the ages of man. That is now your destiny.”
Chaydion could not accept what the Priestess was saying. He was yet a boy, not a scribe nor a scholar. This task could not be his. There were others of the calling more skilled than he, more experienced than he. And as he looked deeper into her eyes his heart told him true. He was the Keeper, he had no choice.
“I see now you have accepted this fate Chaydion. Do not regret it, ever. Nor doubt that you are the one. The whole Council had agreed with Master Tobius months ago. It is not the learning, nor the skill that all matter Chaydion. It is the heart and the soul that makes the Keeper. You have that heart and that soul. Master Tobius saw it when first you came straggling into the Hall, hungry and alone.” Esmeralda stood and took Chaydions hand and raised him from the floor. “You have to set things in order before you leave Chaydion. You must talk to the Council, then make ready for your journey.” With that she smiled and turned to the study door, gently pushing Chaydion out and into the hall. “Go now and get some rest. Tomorrow will be a busy day and we must prepare Master Tobius. Then before the next full moon you must be on your way.”
The Journeys of Chaydion Pain
A full moon was just barely setting when Chaydion awoke. He had been sweating profusely as his nightshirt was soaked from waist to neck. Even though he had slept for six hours he felt as if he had not slept one wink. His room was now cold and damp. The embers in the fireplace had long died out as Chaydion stretched his weary body, walking to the small pile of starter wood and logs to the left of that great mantle.
That night he had slept a deep, deep sleep. How he wished he could return to that sleep for now his mind began to call up memories of Master Tobius. It was as if the previous night was just a dream and he would hear his Masters bellowing voice calling for him to rise, make ready for the coming day. Master Tobius preached that each day was as precious as a fine wine, it must be savored and enjoyed. But above all else he taught that each day must be a lesson, for any day that passes with no lesson learned has been a day wasted. Chaydion smiled slightly as he remembered long ago many days wasted and his Master scolding him over the evening’s meal.
The starter wood was too damp to catch, so after several vain attempts to start a fire Chaydion gave up. He stood and began pulling the wet nightshirt over his head. Tossing it onto the back of the bed he wondered what is was that had made him sweat so that night. Just then a soft knock came to the door sending Chaydion glancing nervously about for his breeches. “Hold please” Chaydion shouted to whoever was at the door, then made his way to the chair upon which his pants were hung.. This had no effect for as he reached the chair Esmeralda stepped into the room. “Priestess!” Chaydion shouted while pulling on his breeches. “You really should have waited!” he continued with embarrassment blushing his face.
Esmeralda only smiled. “I am pledged to my calling and to no man Chaydion. It does not stir my lust to see a man without his clothes.” Still watching the young man dress Esmeralda settled into a chair opposite the room. “It may not stir any feeling in you Priestess, but it may in those that you walk in on.” Chaydion shot back before thinking what his words may have meant. Again Esmeralda only smiled.
“The Council will not be able to meet with, or see you off on this journey” Esmeralda continued. “Things are happening within the realm that require their attention. There is a change taking place across the land, all lands. The Seers cannot part the mist to determine its nature, but they are sure subtle forces are guiding the changes. And all are not for good.” Esmeralda sighed and for a moment the youth seemed to leave her features, then she shook it off. “You must set out soon. The Council believes that your trip may shed some light upon the events and actions taking place in Tamaland Isle and the lands around it. They want you to return as soon as you have contacted Vamar and have his reaction to your news. They also wish for news from within KOA, and any other guilds you may learn of. We must learn where each stands. For law or for chaos.”
“I shall do my best Priestess.” Chaydion replied. He still was not comfortable with the title of Keeper, but he would do his best to fulfill the role. He also felt certain that when he returned the Council will have decided on a new Keeper. One more knowledgeable and studied than he. As with all journeyman Chaydion found his gear packed and ready to go. With a quickness of one now committed he swung the pack over his shoulder and nodded to the door. “At least may I get some breakfast or are you to send me on the road with my stomach growling” Chaydion teased with a smile on his face. “Of course not!” Esmeralda stated faking surprise. “To the hall with you and you'll be lucky if there are yet scraps upon the table.”
The sun was now rising above the eastern mountains when Chaydion stepped out onto the road. The Keepers Hall did not maintain a stable so he would have to walk to the small village two leagues south where there were horses kept by the villagers for the Hall. The air was cool and crisp, just right for an early mornings walk. With a large walking stick in hand Chaydion made south down the dusty road. Roe would be a week’s ride by horseback, and there was no guarantee that Vamar Aeridar would be found there when he arrived. That was a week into the future and of not use worrying about now Chaydion decided. The sky was a beautiful deep blue with no clouds to be seen. Too nice a start to fill one’s mind with dark thoughts.