Busy weekend… what can I say?

Those Days That Will Pass us by are Already a Distant Dream

Dalia nodded and set the wind to swirling on the communicator.  She left quickly, not wanting to intrude on the fussy old dragen’s conversation with her parents.  “Elder Shyrala, Elder Jesin, I’m afraid there is bad news,” the old dragen said as soon as the line opened.

 “That would be?” Shyrala said softly.

 “The sub-elder of the earth dragens has been killed.  It appears that it was done by demons.  It was… like a raid on a much smaller scale,” he said.  He looked anxious and tense.

 “Are we dealing with another incursion?  Is there any sign from the world gate?” Jesin asked.

 “No, none, but it’s possible that the demons have slipped through a smaller rift,” he said.

 “Are you calling a convocation?” Shyrala asked.

 “Not yet,” Eldest Yantalin said softly.  “I’ll tell everyone this way and leave it at that.  In other news, young Elder Myro has set his cup for his sub-elder.”

 “Good for him,” Jesin said softly.  “Are you going to intercede?”

 “Why should I?” The old dragen looked baffled and then turned off the communicator.

 Shyrala snorted and pecked Jesin on the cheek.  “Some day you’ll be able to set your cup for me officially, dearest,” she promised.  “It isn’t nice to tease the eldest.”

 “I know… it just, to this day it aggravates me,” he said as he settled down beside her.  “What were you saying about the demons coming back?”

 “I need to not say these things,” Shyrala murmured.  “Where were we before our daughter came in with a message from the eldest?”  Soon they were distracted from the demons by something else altogether.

**

The Proof of Living that You Gave Me

What was probably the worst thing was the whole idea of not knowing.  He didn’t know if the demons had won the war.  He didn’t know if his family and friends had lived through the war.  He didn’t know what to expect from his demon master.  If what was happening now was any indication, he didn’t know anything anymore.

He watched from his cage as his master entertained, that was the only word he had for what was going on, a dragen.  He sat amongst them, chatting and eating.  He wore a voluminous hooded cloak, but there was no doubt that he wasn’t a demon.  He spoke the demon language with a softer, more lilting voice than any of the demons used.  What features showed marked him as completely different from the demons he supped with.

Denair leaned back on the bars of the cage to try and listen in.  Then he sighed and gave up.  He couldn’t understand the guttural language the demons spoke.  One thing was obvious.  This dragen was no slave or possession; he was an equal.  He might even be more than an equal.  The demons seemed to defer to him.  When he spoke they were silent, a courtesy that they never showed their own kind.  It was obvious that he was working with the demons on something, even if Denair couldn’t be sure what it was.

Finally he stood and left.  Denair sat up a little straighter, wondering if the dragen was returning to their world.  He’d always figured that he was trapped in this alternate realm but perhaps he wasn’t.  The stranger was leaving and he’d come from somewhere.  Perhaps he’d come from their homeland.  For the first time in ten years, Denair had hope of a better life.  He was trapped in the cage though. 

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