The Return of the Shadow - Part 7--Stolen dreams


She had been having strange dreams lately. She had dreamed of another elf. He was standing on the field where she practiced her arms training. He looked exactly like her only with blue eyes and blonde hair. When she had first seen him in her dream she had felt something in the void where her heart had once been. Something struggled to get free from captivity. She desperately wanted him to touch her, if he did her heart would melt and she would be free of the shadow. But as she had made to walk to him the shadow had pulled her back. She tried to be angry at it, but failed. He had taught her everything about magic. He had even given her his own magic to use. She could summon any of the elements that she wanted, though fire and water were always the easiest. Her least favorite elements were ice and metal. Ice crushed fire and froze water. Metal was all right in liquid form, but when it came in huge, solid, chunks she disliked it immensely. Now that she had gotten past the basics her teacher had moved on to scrying. She could see images in fire and water easiest because of her affiliation with them. Often enough she would be walking down one of the halls and one of the torches would catch her attention. She saw pictures in the torch flames, though none of them were of any interest or consequence to her. Mostly the flames showed her pictures of village life or natural disasters, things far away from her. Her world consisted of the cave and the field. Though she promised herself that someday she would explore the forest at its border. Sometimes she saw pictures in the water, there was a spring up on the mountain side that she liked to bathe in and she often saw pictures in the water, just snatches of life from distant lands.

Nenuesa had just finished practicing with her long knives on the field. Grenya was there as well, helping her and correcting her stance. The sun was cut in half by the horizon when Grenya signaled it was time to stop.

"I think I'll stay out here Grenya,'' Nenuesa informed her nursemaid. The shadow did not see the difference between night and day so she was allowed to keep whatever hours she liked. Over the years she had become a creature of the night, shunning daylight and worshipping the moon. She preferred the night because it was easier to hide in, and she often wore its cloak of darkness, a habit she had picked up because of the shadows influence on her. It too preferred the night because her master blended in perfectly with the shadows.

She climbed up the mountainside by a small deer trail. Her spring was on one of the granite shelves jutting out from the side of the mountain. She had chosen this spring because it was exposed directly to the moon all night long.

She stripped off her rough linen breeches and tunic. Her pool was a hot spring, the water was heated by the heat from the earth's core. Another reason why she had chosen it, the elements that she had an affiliation with were all around her when she entered the pool. Water and fire.

She took a step into the pool and immediately relaxed. All of her burdens were washed away with the water. Here she could be herself, without having to worry about getting a certain spell or potion or charm right. She didn't have to worry about obeying the shadow, or being aware of Grenya's feelings though she had none herself. She didn't have to shoot well or fight well. Then she recognized why she loved it here. She was alone. Nowhere else was she ever alone. Grenya was always there teaching her, being sympathetic, feeling so much love towards Nenuesa, love that she could never return. The shadow was always there, teaching her, commanding her.

Here she was alone beneath the brilliant heavens. Just her and the water, the moon, and the stars. She lay back and closed her eyes, allowing the water to envelope her. She could breathe more comfortably under water.

The water in front of her began to glow, she could see the light even through her eyelids. The water was forming images in front of her, glimpses of the future. The image was of the field where she practiced archery. Elves were riding across it, searching for something, they looked around then consulted a map they were holding, they marked something on it with a pen and then rode off into the forest at the border.

The image was of the future, when it would happen she could not be sure, it could be in a day or it could be in a year. Whenever it was she would wait for the elves. Perhaps they knew something of the elf in her dream. She would stay out on the field every afternoon she could, waiting for them. She had never met people of her own kind before.


He hadn't thought the child might have a brother. This could upset his entire plan for her. What was worse was that he was her twin, twins always had special bonds with each other. The child had been communicating with her brother in her dreams. Hopefully his interference had put a stop to that. She wouldn't communicate with him anymore now that he had stopped her dreams. Unfortunately to do so had caused him to enter the child's own dreams as her figure. He had scared her brother, hopefully he wouldn't try to reach her anymore. He had tried to make the brother his slave, but the boy's will was too strong. It was too bad, the boy would have been very valuable to him. Twins always had powers together, and with the child's magic her brother was probably just as strong. If he could net her brother he would be even more powerful.

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