Chapter 9 The Blessed Ones
“We’ve been at this all day, Yelillya. I’m exhausted.” Ryanne pleaded with the high Priestess as they stood before the three kings of Thera. The kings were extremely excited when they got the news that Ryanne was able to bless Rosheeta with fire abilities. King Chenji insisted that they try to bless Junkar with an ability as well, but Ryanne had nothing left to give. Her whole body shook. She was having to make a conscious effort just to remain on her feet. Their was just no way she could bless anyone with any abilities without some recuperation time.
“Please Ryanne, Just try one more time,” Yelillya gently pushed
Ryanne took Junkar’s hands once again and tried to center herself as she had done with Rosheeta. Only this time she felt herself slowly start to crumble as she tried to feel for Junkar’s heartbeat. Ryanne was going to fall and she didn’t even have enough strength to ask for help. Suddenly Ryanne’s lungs were filled with Tylander’s scent and a wave of euphoria washed through her body.
Tylander had entered the thrown room just as Ryanne began to sway on her feet. No one else in the room seemed worried that she looked like she was about to collapse. Tylander ran to his wife and pulled her away from Junkar. “Can you not see she is ill?” Tylander shouted at Locktos. “My wife is in obvious distress and still you make her perform for you?” Tylander was shaking with anger. After watching her die once he was not about to stand by while others pushed Ryanne to the point of hurting herself ever again, not even his King.
“Tylander,” Ryanne whispered as she looked up at him. He thought he saw love in her eyes for the first time since she had returned. “My hero, always trying to protect me. You are such a blessing in my life.” with her words came a jolt of lighting that crashed through Ryanne and into Tylander. Then Ryanne’s body went limp in his arms.
“Oh Gods no, Ryanne!” Tylander screamed panicking. Those were the same words she uttered to him as she slipped away eight years ago. “Don’t be dead please Ryanne. Don’t do this to me again!” Tylander was in full freak out mode as Yelillya tried to pull Ryanne out of his arms.
“Tylander you must calm down. Please let me check her?” Yelillya pleaded with Tylander, but he was not hearing her. He was lost in his own pain.
Junkar jumped in and tried to pry Tylander away from Ryanne, but even he was not able to restrain the grieving Arrainanite. It took the full effort of both Junkar and Endi to finally pry him away from Ryanne’s body so the Priestess could examine her.
Yelillya was fairly adept at using healing magic. She was determined to help Ryanne as best she could, but just in case she couldn’t she knew someone who could. “Call Anetti let her know we need her here immediately” Anetti was the master of Quinetta’s Healers Guild. If she could not help Ryanne then no one could. The high priestess placed her hands over Ryanne’s heart as she centered herself. Closing her eyes Yelillya sent a wave of healing energy into Ryanne. Tylander’s wife’s body absorbed the energy and sent back a wave of information to the High Priestess. Yelillya stood up and walked to Tylander. He was no longer fighting against Endi and Junkar. He looked broken and slumped over. Endi and Junkar were the only things holding him up. “Tylander, I need you to listen to me.” Yelillya spoke firmly as she wanted him to really hear her. “She’s not dead. Do you hear me, she’s not dead.” Tylander looked up into Yelillya’s eyes. “She is tired and very weak, but she will recover. I need you to take her home and make sure she stays in bed until Anetti gives her the OK to get up. Can you do that for me Tylander?” Yelillya asked. when she saw the wave of relief hit Tylander’s face she knew he finally heard her.
“She’s going to be OK?” Tylander asked again as Junkar and Endi finally released him.
“Yes she will be OK.” Yelillya stated although she was still shaking a little herself, “I’m sorry Tylander you were right we should not have pushed her so far so fast. Her abilities are not nearly as strong as they were before. I’m not sure why.” Yelillya was truly baffled. Ten years ago Ryanne would have been able to do this in her sleep. Her gifts were so strong that even those who had no magic could feel her connection to Lunester.
Tylander picked up Ryanne and left the thrown room without a backwards glance. He was mad as hell. They could have done far worse damage to her had he not intervened.
King Locktos watched as Tylander walked away. He wasn’t sure if he was the only one to notice that Ryanne had in fact completed her task before she passed out. “Yelillya,” King Locktos called to the high priestess.
“Yes my King.” She answered formally. Yelillya was always careful to never get to comfortable with the King. They had a history that was best not repeated. Locktos looked annoyed at her continued attempts to distance herself from him.
“Did you see what I saw when Ryanne touched Tylander’s face?”
“Yes my king, I believe she was able to complete a power transfer to Tylander. However with his current emotional state I’d say it would be a good idea to wait and address that with him after Ryanne has recovered.” Yelillya kept her eyes on his feet as she spoke.
“Wait, so now two Arrainanites have been given powers?” King Thealos asked obviously upset. “This needs to be fair no more Arrainanites should get powers until the Asoonadye and Nilactins have been given equitable abilities.”
Endi looked down on the Asoonadye king. “This isn’t a contest or a quest to see how powerful one nation can get over the other. If the Hand Maiden has bestowed a gift to Tylander then that is how Lunester has destined it to be. He does not make mistakes.” King Thealos had to take several steps back just to be able to look up at Endi. When he did, he noticed that while the Endotalen was a frightening creature to behold, he did not seem to be trying to intimidate him, he was merely stating a fact.
“Yes, of course I understand that, but if one nation becomes more powerful than the others we leave ourselves open to corruption. We cannot maintain this peace between out nations unless we ensure equality of power. At least as many Asoonadye and Nilactins need to be blessed to ensure that balance. Certainly Lunester would agree? Isn’t that right High Priestess Yelillya?” King Thealos asked directing his question to Lunester’s Priestess
“Unfortunately, King Thealos my connection to Lunester does not work that way.” Yelillya answered, “I will however meditate on your questions and see if he is willing to give you an answer. Although I must warn you, most times that I have asked for a answer from Lunester I often get either ‘You will know in time my child’ or simply ‘No’.” Yelillya answered the Asoonadye king.
“I may be able to get an answer for you.” Endi stated. “My connection to the spirit realm far stronger than that of the priestess. I, like the Hand Maiden, carry a piece of the afterlife in me. My family discovered many millennia ago that when one journeys to the spirit world and returns they are blessed with certain gifts not of this world, those gifts become part of our DNA and are passed down to their children. While I myself have not died at least four of my direct ancestors returned and those abilities were passed down to me. These abilities are also why I am an outcast among my people. They fear my unnatural abilities.” Endi hung his head at that last statement. He looked sad and lost for a moment.
“Your power makes you an outcast?” King Chenji asked baffled. “Among the Nilactins such power would be celebrated. Were you Nilactin I would fear my people would force you to challenge me so you could become our next king.” Junkar nodded his head in agreement and laughed with his king. King Thealos took another couple of steps back and really looked at Endi. The giant seemed to find the Nilactin King funny, but the sadness was still present.
“Endi when this is all over what will you do?” King Thealos asked.
“I haven’t thought about that yet. I’m not sure if returning with my people to our subterranean cities is the right thing for me anymore.”He answered. The three kings of Thera looked to each other and seemed to communicate silently.
“You are welcome to call Quinetta your home.” King Locktos offered.
“My Castle can be your home as well if you wish it. You will always be accepted among my people.” King Thealos stated firmly.
“My people would also love to have you. Just imagine how much fun it would be to spar up against some of the best warriors on the planet.” King Chenji extended his offer to Endi. “Why anyone would keep such a valuable asset as yourself up on a shelf is beyond me.”
Endi was overwhelmed by the offers from these three kingdoms. His people would have referred to them as primitive beings, yet over the course of 24 hours they have been more accepting of his and each others differences than Endi’s people could ever hope to be. They would be his family now.
“If you give me a moment my kings,” Endi stated as he sat down on the floor and crossed his legs. “I will try to get what information I can.” Endi closed his eyes and centered himself. Taking a long breath in and holding it Endi’s essence left his body and entered the realm between the living and the dead. To go fully into the afterlife was way to dangerous on his own, but to simply stand near the entrance was relatively safe. Endi just had to be careful not to stay for too long. His body could not breath while his essence was here. “Endi my son, I thought we talked about this?” Endi looked up into a familiar pair of large green eyes.
“Mom, I’ve missed you. You left me all alone. Even my mate does not want me.” Endi took a step towards the afterlife and his mother.
“You are not alone anymore. I see you have found yourself a new family. But still you should not have come. It is to dangerous.”
“I need help. I need to know if we are on the right path. The lives of my new family and that of all the Endotalen people are at stake. You are an oracle you can look to the future. Please tell me what you see?” Endi begged his mother taking another step towards the afterlife he was running out of air.
“I will tell you, but the price to defeat Illucious will be great.”
“I will pay it.” Endi stated emphatically.
“No, you won’t, but one you care for will. The Hand Maiden will bless four men one from each nation. Those men must go and find Dyvanor’s army. They must use their gifts to get in to see the Counsel. Tylander’s gift will break the spell Dyvanor has placed on our people. The gifted ones must kill Dyvanor. During the battle one of the Gifted will fall to his death. He will be followed into the afterlife by a second. Leaving the final two to make the journey home with heavy hearts. Now Endi! You must go now! Before it is to late.” Endi’s Mother pushed his essence away from the spirit realm and back into his body. Endi jerked forward as he reentered his body and took a deep breath.
“I know what we have to do.” Endi stated. “I don’t think any of you are going to like it.”
Endi told the kings about his conversation with his mother wishing he could leave out the part about how two of the four men would not be returning. He had a feeling he knew who the other three blessed ones would be. He looked around the room at his friends. Othyos, Junkar and himself would be making that journey with Tylander and only two of them would return home.