Chapter Two: Beginning §1

January – 1022 YD
Gesula Temple, Lenyol

Months passed. Kesia stood nervously at the entrance of Gesula Temple clad in bronze ceremonial tunic and trousers. Beside her in identical garb were Lasair and Toran. A dragon of golden thread was embroidered both on their chests and the right leg of their trousers, the first coiled, the second stretched to the knee. Mellena was with them also but, unsure of etiquette, her mother had embroidered the same fabric with flowers instead.
   Priest Caleb ascended the hill near the temple carrying a basket of candles. He came upon the four youths and smiled. Inside, villagers and their parents smuggled excited waves. Continue reading “Chapter Two: Beginning §1”

Chapter One: §6


Spring – 1021 YD

Offenure, Lenyol

Brennan gave a servant’s tour of the castle, showing them through the labyrinth of kitchens, service passages, larders and keeps. His only reprieve from duty were the hours in the early evening, during which the Princess dined with her family. His position was a taxing one, he told them, rewarded by an untaxed wage. ‘Perhaps the only benefit of being a foreigner!’ He added quietly: ‘Many dislike my presence in the Princess’ retinue. Perhaps I was chosen for my origin; the Princess enjoys being contrary.’ Kesia smiled, suspecting even at her age that his appearance had been a prevailing factor. Continue reading “Chapter One: §6”

Chapter One: §4

(Continued) Offenure, Lenyol  

The city was a wonder to Kesia. Along the route to their inn she absorbed the scope of city life, with all its noise and haste and sensory onslaught.
   Castleknock was an impressive place. Three levels in height with gilded windows—each fitted with stained glass—its interior and furnishings had the opulence of nobility. It was a relief to Kesia that by the time of their arrival most guests were asleep, and that the innkeeper recognised Mitchas with warmth. His beautiful horses were taken to the castle stables, and they were shown to their rooms.

Continue reading “Chapter One: §4”

Chapter One: §2

Winter – 1012 YD
Gesula, Lenyol

The village of Gesula was speckled with lantern lights guiding the way through the fog.
   In the central street stood a large and popular house.
   ‘Bed time, everyone!’
   The house vibrated with excited feet; the children charged into the bedroom with shrieks of delight. All five crawled into one bed, snuggling up to Ànlisia. They elbowed each other to be closest to the story.
   ‘Prayers first. Come on, all together.’ Continue reading “Chapter One: §2”

Chapter One: Rising Ashes §1

Winter – 1021 YD
Gesula, Lenyol

Long as she had known, Otàmil had forced Kesia to wear shoes with no soles. Weavers need always be connected with the earth, he’d said, and there was no point starting with proper boots only to lose them later. In winter his edict was burdensome, for though no snow fell in the lowlands, there was fierce frost in the mornings from June on. It was the skin between her toes which smarted most, and no amount of exposure would ever harden those little sections of flesh. Her brother had caught her wearing socks one such morning. Her father learnt of this, of course, and for the whole of July made her wear shorts to ensure the soles of her feet were uncovered. Continue reading “Chapter One: Rising Ashes §1”