Part 8

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PART EIGHT:

Top Of The Island

SILVER EAGLE FEATHER, Charmian, and Drake walked quietly up an inclining path.  The air had warmed up somewhat from that morning and Charmian didn't feel quite the chill she had earlier, on getting aboard the ferry.  Still, she rubbed her arms and stared at the rocky ground as they went.  Several times along the way Drake would poke her in the arm and say something completely inane, as if the woman ahead of them couldn't even hear, but Charmian did her best to keep her replies short and to the point.

"Hey, Charm...don't you think it's funny that she doesn't even look like an Ocryx?"

"She's got green eyes."

"Well, yeah, I guess...but they don't glow or anything."

A long pause.

"Do you think maybe she has wings underneath her clothes?"

"No.  No wings.  She said half-brother.  Meaning half-Ocryx."

"Oh, yeah, right.  So...she must have a human mother?"

"Ask her."

"No way!...hey, Charm, so far this is the second person we've heard of whose dad is Ocryx.  Do you suppose there are any others?  I mean, two so far, that seems to be a lot, maybe he gets around..."

"Jeez, Drake, just ask her already.  You're being very rude."

"That's why I don't want to ask..."

"Ocryx is my father, like I told you."  Charmian's and Drake's heads bobbed up on hearing Silver Eagle Feather speak.  She still hadn't turned back to look at them, but continued walking.  "My mother is human.  Half-Ocryxes generally do not resemble their Ocryx parents."

"So...you mean there are more than just you?" Drake inquired.

"Yes.  Ocryx...has never been one to shy away from a prospective mate.  Though perhaps 'mate' is too strong a word.  I'm certain there are others like myself on the Island."

"What's the deal with Tal Natha?" Charmian asked.  "He said that Ocryx and Ocryana are his parents.  But he also said they have to keep away from each other because they can kill each other.  Why did they have him together when they're enemies?"

"Ocryana tricked Ocryx into that one.  He's easy to fool, when the prize is something he's so interested in.  I'm assuming Ocryana wished to have a full-blooded Ocryx offspring.  Why that is, I'm not certain."  A pause.  "She may have her own plans for him."

"You mean, for Tal Natha?"

"Yes.  Perhaps she thought he would follow her path.  But he refused.  Neither did he take after Ocryx.  He follows his own path.  What that path is only time will tell."

"You trust him?"

Another pause.  "As much as I can bring myself to trust a full-blooded Ocryx, yes.  He's given us no trouble.  He keeps to himself.  Except at night.  He wanders through our dreams, but he never interferes."

"Wanders through your dreams?"

"He is the Dreamspinner.  I assumed he already told you this?"  This time she did look back at them, and smiled slightly.  "Don't be so anxious.  Like I said, there's nothing to fear from him, so far.  He's the one who asked that you both come here, so he must have some purpose in mind."

"He said this lady named Red Bird had something to do with it," Drake said.  "But he wasn't real clear on why."

"Red Bird?"  Silver Eagle Feather's step slowed for a moment.  "Are you positive?"

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