Monthly Archives: April 2017

Illness in Elenduil

Ellorian Melith’endre frowned as he looked down at the man in the bed. The elder Whitemarsh’s labored breathing and pallid look were not good signs. The winter illness was not going easy on the people of Elenduil, and medical supplies were running low not only from the high demand, but also because of a severely dry summer the previous year.

Nor was he the best healer. His magics were much stronger in arcane applications such as translocation, illusion, and ward weaving. He was especially good in unweaving wards, and felt that was part of the reason they had kept him in Thril Gandir so long, likely as a test to see if he was anything like his sister who had similar gifts and had tried to escape the mage city more than once. He wasn’t. He had the patience to wait for an adahi to be assigned to him. His father was relying on him to be able to inherit the province, and the people would depend on his leadership and protection some day.

For now they only depended on his healing gifts. He had learned the art of mixing herbs to supplement his healing magic. As half of his garden had wilted, and died in the dry heat of the past summer, he had very little to spare. He took a deep breath, clearing his mind and held his hand over the old man’s chest. He closed his eyes and whispered some words while imagining the congestion releasing. The old man coughed weakly.

He opened his eyes, glancing up towards the door where the man’s daughter stood. She had already lost her husband to the illness, though she had come through it fine. Her unborn child was still growing at a good rate as well.

Tough decisions had to be made this year. He went to his bag and took out one of the small glass bottles. It was a diluted solution. He saved the full-strength medication for the young, or a family’s only provider. It was unfair that her father was likely to die as her husband did, but she would live. He wished he could help the people of his father’s province more, but there was nothing more to be done. All the letters he had written were either unanswered or had been responded to with a letter of rejection in his request for help, and always for the same reason. Supplies were short elsewhere as well.

At least the diluted solution would give him some chance, though Ellorian felt it was being started too late. The illness had progressed too far, and in that case, not even the full-strength solution would be much help. He walked to the woman and placed the bottle in her hands. “Two tablespoons each day. One in the morning, one in the evening. You may need to use a dropper like you did with your husband.”

She frowned, “It’s the same thing?”

He nodded.

“It didn’t work for Dhiren.”

“It worked for you. I hope it works for him as well. I’ve done all I can.” He closed his bag, and started towards the front room of the small house.

She continued to frown, but nodded. “I hope so as well.”

“Send word to me at the castle if there’s any change. I have a long list of people to visit, but you know I make time for everyone.” He grabbed his cloak from the hook, and wrapped it around his shoulders.

She nodded silently as he headed out the door.

He didn’t glance back. It was hard enough knowing he was failing his people without seeing the hopelessness on their faces. He climbed into the carriage, and signaled the driver to take them to the next house on the list. He sighed as he leaned back in his seat.

His adahi, Rissa, sat opposite from him. She looked up from her book. “Not good, I assume.”

“No, not good. I don’t know how any of them will trust me after this. I’m supposed to be able to help them.”

“I think even the best healers are being challenged this winter, and you are helping some. I’m still here.”

Rissa had caught the illness fairly early on as well. As required, he had to notify Thril Gandir that his adahi was incapable of performing her duties, even if it was temporary. For the week that Rissa was in bed, they had sent an adahi to fill in. He was young, and Ellorian was sure he was freshly graduated from the training academy. He and Rissa had built up trust, and had an understanding. The new adahi had his head full of rules, and would not bend on any of them. Ellorian went along with it, though having an armed man in a patient’s bedroom was not his idea of a relaxing environment for the patient, or for him. He had been quite happy when Rissa was able to return to her duties.

He sighed again. “I just wish I could do more.”

“You’re doing your best with what you have. You can’t do more than that.”

He nodded. He supposed she was right about that. He turned his head to look out the window. Rissa looked down at her book again.

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Julan’s Ranger Log

Faeris’s parents came to visit. Luckily, we had warning, and we had plenty of time to clean up the cabin, not that it was dirty, but there were things all around that his parents probably shouldn’t see. So we had to put those all away in boxes, and we hid them under the bed.

I think the visit went well. I thought it was just going to be his father, but his mother came too. I made sure I was wearing good clothes that weren’t too tight and covered everything, and I think it was doubly impressing that they happened to arrive while I was practicing with my crossbow. I looked like a perfect, dedicated ranger. Well, I am a ranger, but it’s not all I think about all the time like some people, and that’s fine. I like having interests outside being a ranger.

Anyway, I looked like one of the people who only like being a ranger, which I think impressed them, so I decided to go with it. They asked me about my previous experience, and I couldn’t really tell them the truth so I said something about being with the Longwood unit in Eversong because I’m pretty sure they don’t know about ranger units.

They seemed satisfied with that. Faeris almost laughed because of the name I came up with. I decided I had to really watch what I said after that. I didn’t want him to start giggling when I was trying to be serious.

I’m a little worried that his parents will want to look up my parents. His father alone probably wouldn’t have thought to ask, but his mother was very nosy. She wanted to know who my parents were and what they did and all that. I kind of left out the part where I haven’t seen them in almost a century. I should have prepared ahead of time and had some fictional family made up who all died or something. Some average family too, not my snobby rich parents. They had me engaged when I was 20! Well, it was going to be a long engagement, but still. It was to a girl, and even back then, I knew. I had tried to tell them too, but I think that’s part of the reason they decided to set an engagement for me that early. Anyway, I want nothing to do with them because they can’t accept me for me.

I figured Faeris’s parents might be a bit the same way, though they seemed okay with me, so I hope they don’t try to get him to marry a girl. I won’t allow it!
Now I’m afraid his mother will try to talk to my parents or poke around too much and find out things I’d rather not have them know. I don’t want him to have problems with them. I’d rather they just leave us alone.

But there’s another fear too. If his parents poke around and my parents find out where I am, then they might want to see me. I let go of them a long time ago. I don’t want them back in my life. They couldn’t accept who I am, so I left and that’s that. They even had another son to replace me, so they shouldn’t even care now.

Anyway, the visit with Faeris’s parents wasn’t so bad. I kind of like them, and I think they liked me. Still, I’m glad it’s over.

This weekend is the Spring dance at the school. I think that will be fun. I can’t wait. We both had to get new things to wear, so we went to Silvermoon. We bought some more candles while we were there. I think they’re funny.

It’s kind of weird to think that a couple of years ago I wouldn’t have dreamed of having an actual steady boyfriend. I mean, I had friends that I slept with sometimes on a regular basis, and lots of repeat paying customers, but never a boyfriend. Even when Faeris and I started out together, it was more like we were just friends who had fun, but now it’s more. The longer I’m with him, the more right it feels to only be with him. And at the same time it’s weird because of all the problems with my parents and stuff, I don’t think I really knew what love was. I knew what friendship was, and while I love my friends, that’s different from romantic love.

I think I know now.

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The Dance

Fhorbach watched as the other male lucaja strutted back and forth in front of him. His wings outstretched as he turned around slowly. Of course, he wasn’t actually considering the proposition, not tonight. However, the other male was nice to look at all the same. Fhorbach continued to watch as he sat, making no move to give the other male any indication what he was thinking.

It was common in this dragon’s lair. His pets were solely male, as to prevent any accidents, though they were frequently bred with females in other lairs. Fhorbach’s owner didn’t want the responsibility of training the young and sorting their characteristics. The brand on Fhorbach’s thigh marked him as intelligent and strong, which were desired, but controlled traits.

Too many intelligent lucaja were seen as a threat as far as he could tell. He’d only met a few others, almost all female. There used to be another male in his dragon’s lair, but he had already been old when Fhorbach was bought and homed here. The dragon had taken the older male out only a few weeks after Fhorbach’s arrival. He did not return with him.

His mother was the one who had taught him the most. It was from her that he learned speech, both the lucaja words and the dragon words. She taught him the rules he must obey, and how to write the dragon’s script using ink and a loose feather. He remembered how upset he had been when they took him away from her. She had told him to be strong and obey his new owner. He had, so far. He had heard of some lucaja being used as messengers between the other dragon clans. There were the ones to the southeast and the others to the northeast. He had never been asked to take messages, but he was sure he could. He was strong and smart.

He also wondered at times if there were lucaja settlements outside the mountain lairs of the dragons. If there were, he had never heard of them. However, he assumed they wouldn’t be something they would be allowed to speak of, not to mention, the most conversation he had was with his owner, who often asked for stories of what the others did while he was gone during the day. If his owner knew of lucaja settlements, it was highly doubtful he would say anything about them.

He turned his attention away from his thoughts, and back to the male performing the mating dance in front of him. He rarely had to do such things for the females. It was easier just to talk to them a little beforehand. They both knew what was expected of them, and it was nice to learn a little of what the other liked before starting. His mother had taught him to always respect the females he was put with. He knew the mating dance was another way of doing the same thing. Lacking words, the male in front of him had to express himself in other means, and Fhorbach got the message. The other male eyed him expectantly while continuing his dance.

Fhorbach frowned and tapped a talon on the floor in irritation, and turned to the side. From the corner of his eye, he saw the feathered wings of the other male droop in rejection, but moments later, he began to walk towards another, outstretching his wings as he drew closer, and stepped into another dance.

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