The Logs of the TDFS Tindome
Chapter 51: Farewells
Mandorak and Bavör have been keeping an eye on the volcano. They don't see
it being an immediate threat, but sooner rather than later, its dynamic
stability will reach a relative maximum... They think they should mention
this to Grandfather Healer. They explain to Eïr that they'd like to talk
with this influential person before we leave with the girls.
Eïr goes off for her noon healing, and comes back after a successful visit. We wait quietly through this last afternoon. When early evening arrives, Eïr goes off again with Khajad towards the palace. She practices a little distraction, just to keep in her hand. On the way, she notices someone in a burnoose-like robe following them, attention on Khajad. "There appears to be someone following us."
Khajad tries to be subtle about looking behind them. He spots the man, but Eïr thinks the man noticed that he has been spotted. He comes no closer, and takes no obvious action, but he continues to follow them. They return to the familiar sick room. Eïr performs some healing, and guides her apprentice into greater understanding. As they leave, she informs the matron, through Khajad, "I have left several days worth of medication with Hannaleia. She is an apt pupil, and I think she will do well. Jhazhneen is definitely on the mend, and I believe she will do well." The matron nods. "I am going to the Temple of Healing now. Have our two young ladies been readied? Oh, we think we were followed on the way here."
The matron is concerned. "The young ladies are being prepared now. You could wait and share their escort."
The healer accepts the offer. The escort will leave her and Khajad at the Temple of Healing. Soon, they are joined by Samantha and Sarah, conservatively dressed as beige, fabric cones, and their escort of some young ladies, round men, and male guards. Eïr mutters to Sam, "We think we were followed here. Can you even move in that?"
"It's... not as bad as it looks. I have worn this many clothes. In some weeks." She sighs.
They leave the Fifth Temple, and wait for their carriage to be brought up. A cohort of nine guards marches in their direction. It is Lt. Jhejhaleen, in full armor, and his men. The carriage arrives. The sisters and a few ladies settle themselves in the carriage, a pair of guards step up onto the back as if they were mere footmen, and the rest of the entourage array themselves around the vehicle. They slowly walk out through the palace gates. Khajad makes a gesture with his hand that Eïr notices. The two of them find themselves within the protective perimeter of the nine of guards.
The guards reconfigure as they walk along, with one triad fortifying the right, and a second triad disappearing. The lieutenant informs them that there seem to be two groups following them.
Meanwhile, back at Madame Fishilashi's, we prepare to leave. She shows the captain an abacus, displaying some amount. Captain Finwë places gold coins in front of her until our hostess rejects any more. Finwë gestures over Eric, who hands over a paper box containing (as noted by an elven glyph) a stickpin. Teller pronounces, "A gift." Madame Fishilashi examines the box, opens it, and smiles.
We gather our baggage, and head out for the city gates. We can see the Captain of the City watching us, as we make our way to the Outer City. As we progress down to the main wharf, we spot a man watching us from the flat roof of a small building. Mannie pops out a second sight viewpoint to examine the fellow closely. The man seems to be watching in bored nonchalance, but is also muttering. Ten feet behind him, however, is a man clad in black on a lounging chair, flanked by two men in dark brown.
Teller asks to piggy-back a second sound on top of his second sight. Mannie allows it. The first thing they here is the caw of the slate-grey falcon which is not, in fact, a wall ornament. The men look at the falcon, and say nothing.
The dwarf drops the second sight-and-sound. We pass the house, and continue on to the Tindomë. He races to the observation deck, and zooms the viewing window in on the house and its roof. There's the man in brown, talking unobtrusively. We watch the falcon, who soon turns to watch us. Mannie shifts the viewpoint, and soon the falcon loses interest in our direction. We torment the bird for a few minutes.
Finwë thinks about sending a warning into the city to Jhejhaleen or Khajad. We know we shouldn't use anything like magic. Teller volunteers to go back into the city to inform Jhejhaleen. Finwë agrees, and hands over the pair of passes.
Eïr and Khajad enter the Temple of Healing. The carriage continues on towards the gate. Grandfather Healer meets her. She informs him that she will be leaving the City now, so she is here to inform him of what has transpired, and to return his box. She assures him that Hannaleia shows promise. He tells her that she has done a "good thing." She tells him she's left some final medication for Jhazhneen, and she thanks him for his work on her patient back on our ship. She then brings up the matter of the volcano, explaining that our dwarves were worried about its level of activity. The healer assures her that they don't have to worry. The two make their farewells, with compliments on both sides.
©2002, 2006 Ann Broomhead. All Rights Reserved.