Monday, December 24, 2012

Chapter 8 Good Advice

This is Chapter 8 of Farworld Book 3 -- Air Keep which comes out February 26th. Hope you enjoy it.

Interlude 1
Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7

Chapter 8 -- Good Advice
“Kyja! Kyja, control yourself.” Master Therapass placed his wrinkled hands on Kyja’s shoulders, and she realized she’d been banging her fists on the aptura discerna, willing it to show her Marcus.
“You said he was all right. You said he was safe.” Kyja gripped the edge of the table to keep her hands from shaking. “Where is he?” she demanded, her heart pounding.
“Just because you cannot see Marcus does not mean he’s in danger.”
“Sure,” Riph Raph said. “Maybe Turnip Head just knocked over his wheelchair, spread his things around the floor and, um, took a nap . . . where you can’t find him.”

Master Therapass and Kyja glared at Riph Raph, and the skyte tucked his head under one wing. “I’ll just let the two of you work this out.”
Kyja took several deep breaths, trying to get herself under control. “What does it mean that I can’t see him? He’s not . . .”
“Dead?” The wizard shook his head, his long gray beard waggling. “No. If something had happened to the boy, you would see him anyway. This is odd. Most odd.” He drummed his fingers on the table, and a series of scrolls and books marched in front of him, opening to certain sections or uncurling to reveal a few lines of text. The wizard looked at each one then shook his head. The document moved on, and another took its place.
“You said the aptura discerna shows what’s inside me, what I care about most,” Kyja said. “What I care about is knowing that Marcus is safe. So why is the window showing me his things, but not him? Did I do something wrong?”
Master Therapass took off his glasses and looked down at her with his gentle brown eyes. “No, child. The all-seeing eye is not a wishing well. I have studied it for years and yet I still know but a small part of its power. There are many things I don’t completely understand. Why it shows us some things and not others. Why it only works when our minds are calm. How it works on someone like you, who is immune to traditional magic.”
Kyja shivered. Her entire life she’d dreamed of having magic. It wasn’t until the wizard explained that she was from another world—a world that didn’t use spells, wands, and potions—that she’d understood why she was different from everyone else on Farworld. But that didn’t mean the desire for having magic had gone away.
“What we do know is that the aptura discerna is a window into the soul,” Master Therapass continued. “What we see in it is a reflection of not only our desires, but our thoughts, our beliefs. To some extent, even our memories.” He touched her shoulder. “The thing to do now is get some sleep. I will give the situation further study, and we can try again—”
“No!” Kyja blurted, cutting him off.
Master Therapass blinked.
“Marcus is in trouble.” Kyja jumped up from the table, knocking her chair across the floor. “We don’t have time to study. We need to help him.”
“What are you suggesting?” the wizard asked. His face tensed, but she didn’t care.
“I need to pull him over. Something’s wrong.” She put a hand to her chest. “I can feel it.”
“Please sit down.” Master Therapass pointed to her chair. It jumped up and hurried back to the table beside her. But Kyja didn’t want to sit. She couldn’t. Fear and anger fueled a desperate energy that forced her to keep moving.
“I understand your worry,” the wizard said as Kyja paced the room. “But there are things you don’t know. Things I probably should have told you before now. For one thing, Marcus is safe.”
Kyja stopped pacing. “How can you know that?”
Master Therapass tugged at his beard. “I told you that I sent Marcus to Earth. That you are from there as well. What I didn’t tell you was that just as there is a link between you and Marcus, there is a link between Earth and Farworld. I’ve known this for some time.
“What kind of link?” Kyja asked.
“I don’t understand it completely. No one on Farworld does. When I first sent Marcus to Earth, I sent him to a person I’d been in communication with for some time.”
Was he talking about Elder Ephraim, the man who found Marcus? “How could you communicate with someone on Earth? I thought the only way that was possible was by opening a drift.”
The wizard held up a hand. “Now is not the time. Suffice it to say that when the time is right, I will explain more to you. You know that Marcus is destined to save Farworld. But you’ve never asked about your destiny. About how you will save Earth.”
Kyja was speechless. She licked her lips. A day ago, this conversation would have fascinated her. But now she was worried about Marcus. “What does any of this have to do with keeping him safe?”
“There are places on Earth,” Master Therapass explained. “Places of safety created by others who also understand the link between our worlds. The monastery is not as it seems. Elder Ephraim was a great religious leader. But he was more than that. As long as Marcus stays within the monastery, the Dark Circle cannot reach him.”
“But he isn’t there!” Kyja stamped her foot. “I would have seen him if he was. He must have left.”
Master Therapass ran a finger across the aptura discerna, and the colors of the window swirled. “That is not possible. People are watching him, making sure he does not leave the grounds. I would have been alerted by one of them if he had.”
Kyja ran her fingers through her long dark hair. “So we’re supposed to just wait? I’m sorry; I can’t do that. I know you don’t believe the note. But I do. It’s almost exactly the middle of the night. I can bring him over now. We can talk to him. See where he went.”
“It is too great of a risk,” Master Therapass said. “I have been studying Marcus’s link to the shadow realm, and I fear it is an even greater threat to him that I had first thought. Believe that I am making progress. I’ve uncovered a way to keep him in Farworld longer than normal so he doesn’t have to pass through the shadow realm as often. But I need more time to find a way to protect him when he does pass through.”
Kyja wanted to tell him that if he wanted to protect Marcus the best way to do it was to bring him here. But she bit back the words, knowing he’d say.
The wizard smiled as though reading her thoughts. “If you care about him as much as you say you do, you will go back to bed while I think over what I’ve learned tonight. I will study the note. It may mean exactly what you think it does. If so, it will provide the solution we have been looking for. If not, we will avoid making what could be a terrible mistake. Tomorrow we can try the aptura again.”
It made sense. Kyja had known she was being rash. Maybe her feeling was wrong. She believed the wizard when he said the monastery was safe. Still . . .
“All right,” she said. “I’ll go back to my room.”
The wizard studied her, clearly suspicious. “You give me your word that you will wait before doing anything?”
Kyja nodded. “I give you my word.”
Master Therapass nodded. “At times you must choose logic over feelings. Wisdom comes with experience.”
“I know.” Kyja ran a hand longingly over the colored window then walked to the door. “Good night.”
“Good night,” the wizard said and went back to studying.
As soon as they were in the hallway, Riph Raph landed on Kyja’s shoulder, and she walked quickly to the stairs. The guard there gave the skyte a suspicious frown and touched the hilt of his sword .
“Tell me you aren’t going to do what I think you are,” Riph Raph said, digging his talons into Kyja’s arm.
She set her jaw. “There are times to trust your feelings. Times when logic is a bunch of hogwash, no matter what experience and wisdom might say.”
Riph Raph huffed. “You promised the wizard you’d wait.”
“And I will.” Kyja broke into a run, and the skyte had to flap his wings to keep from falling off. “Right until I get to my room.”

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