Eirek awoke as trumpets blared a song of festivity into the heated air. Freyr still shone greatly in the sky, making its way west toward the horizon. He had fallen asleep in order to deal with Angal's stubbornness. The telecard he had found in his envelope told them to go to Domnux Plains, not Syf, but Angal insisted that he needed to go to Cresica's capital to find something he forgot. What that was, Eirek still wasn't sure.
"You're awake. We just entered Syf."
"I heard," Eirek said. He looked around. Syf was separated in four sections, each connected to one another hill upon hill. They passed the first, a squalid section of town. Brothels and ruthless taverns lay there. The main square was located in the second section with the majority of the population. Three maidens carved of copper, silver, and gold stood center in the three separate fountains of water—a symbol to Cresica's matriarchy. People stood in storefronts along the cobblestone road that lined the city streets. Roofs were packed with straw or wood, both as copious on Cresica as the farms and food.
To Eirek's left, the procession had started. It would open with a storyteller accompanied by harps, lyres, and other strings. Drums would soon follow as the story grew more intense. He had only seen the parade once, when his uncle was chosen to lead it five years prior.
Eirek watched as Angal mouthed every word of the story by heart:
"The men bred from fire emerged one day.
With a sense of entitlement, claims were made
For throne and blood. They laid only assault
On our lands, 'cause their land proved false.
The horses came with rein in their mouths and fire in their manes.
The riders from the land of Kane,
The riders from the land of Kane
Came on horses with rein in their mouths and fire in their manes."
The song would go on to tell of the hero who rose up against the riders from Kane with help from the god of war, Tomahawke, and the god of fire, Fueoco. But they left the road, maneuvering past hoards of people through the main square. Eirek could see the storyteller and strummers garbed in brown with white sashes underneath their cloaks. They passed the alleys intersecting with small houses to the third tier. Private gateways of steel protected the houses made of block and brick and stone. Above the rich part of Syf was another hill and, there, Lord Clayse's mansion.
Following cobblestone to the left, they passed a variety of large estates. Angal's house was stationed half a mile in, between two white mansions. After punching in a few numbers on a keypad on the gate, Angal guided his caracraft past the electronic gate and down a paved driveway until stopping at a turnabout.
"What did I leave here?" Eirek asked, exiting from the passenger side.
"I left something here. You left something there." Angal pointed to the castle on the fourth tier.
Eirek couldn't help but notice the gray clouds rolling in. "How do you suppose I left something there?" He had only ever been to the mansion once, when he was fourteen. He and Angal were invited after his uncle finished leading the parade. Even Jahn had come along for such an event.
Before Eirek could receive an answer, Angal disappeared into his estate. Eirek gently kicked the ground, annoyed. He never received answers from Angal.
Two granite statues of hawks, wings expanded, eyed him as he made his way up the steps to the roan-colored wooden doors, large enough for an army of soldiers to enter. Once inside, rows upon rows of books filled the shelves against the walls. These texts were Angal's pride—to remain untouched by even a butler or maid. Eirek figured this because most were riddled with dust and cobwebs.
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The Trials of the Core (GotC #1)Fantasy
As Edwyrd Eska approaches his two-hundredth year as Guardian of the Core, he must find an Apprentice to train under him. His title and role compels him to safeguard and govern his universe, Gladonus, as each Guardian before him has done and those af...