109 Chapel Days · Scene 27

Chapel Days

Chapel Days · Scene 27 · Path B

mph! I’m afraid you’re wasting your breath. This idiot’s been unbalanced for as long as I’ve known her. She could have been a brilliant engineering craftsman–”

“And been long dead.”

Squawk’s jaw fell at the audacity that Chain displayed by interrupting him, but he could not argue her point. She was not so confident that Squawk felt that way though and made sure to emphasize her stance.

“I may not be able to put my memories in order, or keep a hold of them properly, but I clearly remember watching that Foreigner city fall out of the sky onto the village. If I hadn’t trained to be an adventurer, I’d be dead so many times over now. Even then, I’d probably be dead anyway without the help of the people I’ve met since then, so I’ll listen to what this man has to say.”

“It is Mosvei, my name that is. I am a high priest of Vaerseal and feel honored that a Child of Her Light would welcome my aid.”

“It’s more just that I want to hear what you have to say and see if I find it useful. Drop may be unsettled by you, so I kind of am too seeing as we’re the same person, but you talked about the dragon I keep seeing and know about the whispers of the Lucifalz. No one else is even aware of them yet you know. And you have the presence of magic on your eyes, but it doesn’t feel like the fire of Icarus or the Light of Cardinal. There’s something weird about you and that is making me curious.”

“Curiosity is both the boon and vice of many an adventurer, but in this case, it will serve you as a boon, Chainmaid.”

“I do hope so seeing as you’ve just been babbling so far about things this idiot should have learned growing up.”

“Oh? Your hometown had a Scholar of Vaerseal present.”

“Of course not you fool! But the relationship between the sun and Celestia was covered in our classes!”

There was no doubt at that point that Squawk clearly did not like Mosvei. The smiling priest with his magically sealed eyes was too at ease shifting between helpful and mocking and Squawk had no intention of putting up with it further. Chain was of a different mind however and slipped in front of Squawk so that he no longer had an unobstructed view of the priest. Looking back over her shoulder, Chain suggested a different approach for Squawk to take as she made clear her intentions.

“Maybe it’d better if you left Squawk. You’re still grouchy from the tests so–”

“Don’t be more of an idiot than you already are! He already mentioned he was going to tell you where to go to solve whatever is wrong with you, and since I’ll be following you that means I need to hear it as well!”

Locking Chain in place with a fierce scowl, Squawk walked around her and tuned that look onto Mosvei. The priest simply continued to smile and took in Squawk’s words calmly.

“Now, enough wasting our time you raving dolt and tell us what we’ll be getting into if you think you know.”

“But I do know child. Mother Osprey has already spoken to me of it. I will not divulge the details for the sake of what game is at play here, but I can tell you what you must do and why she called for me.

“Unlike the Cardinal Church who used to disavow knowledge of the spirits and keep the people ignorant of their existence for the sake of controlling the power balance of mankind, the Scholars of Vaerseal have always studied them. As a result, we are far more knowledgeable about them than most, though if not for the dragon that ails you Chainmaid your spirit self would surely know more than any of us.”

Crossing her arms, Drop pouted fussily as Mosvei offered her a compliment. Chain felt confused as she obviously wanted to know more but as Drop was also her, she was just as annoyed by the priest. Forcing an awkward smile, she attempted to remain silent to allow Mosvei to continue.

“I will not spend too much time explaining, as I believe for an adventurer like yourself discovering what you must out in the world is part of what you desire in life. However, if you are to survive and become stable, you must ponder always on the knowledge I will impart upon you.”

“Will you just get on with it already!”

Hands flying into the air, Squawk reached the end of his patience and turned his back on Mosvei in a vain attempt to not be annoyed by him. It was a difficult proposition for him as he turned his long ears back to keep listening, exposing himself to the voice of the man so obviously irritating him. Fortunately, it seemed as though he might finally be getting somewhere.

“What you need to know is that our world is divided into the powers of Light, Darkness, fire, earth, wind, water, and flora. Those powers can be further divided, but for simplicities sake it is best that you know that they are controlled by Father Icarus and the Sister Goddesses. Fire and earth are Father Icarus’ domain while wind, water, and flora belong to Celestia, Ocia, and Atheaeldre respectively. Darkness is the domain of Lucifalz, and Light is shared by both Cardinal and Vaerseal who also wields divine fire. Mankind typically is comprised of a balance of all of these powers, but those who contract the spirits or are corrupted by the Foreigners are thrown out of balance. Those who would become Sa·B·ers typically have the darkness within them balanced by Cardinal’s Light, but you Chainmaid have so great a darkness that it must be balanced by an equally greater Light if you are to maintain your humanity. But that has smothered the other powers that comprise you and while the spirit of water manages to take form despite this imbalance, the fire and earth in you are barely present. As for wind, it is absent in all accounts.”

“That doesn’t sound particularly good.”

Scratching at her cheek with a nervous laugh, Chain tried to weigh the meaning of Mosvei’s words. Squawk did not particularly care for further explanations and demanded the solution as he kept his back turned.

“Then how do we balance her back out? It’s obvious it’ll kill the idiot if she doesn’t do something, and surely you know what has to be done.”

“It is a matter both simple and trying. She needs simply bring the other powers into balance though that task is not so simple. She is though already capable of entering contract with the spirits and they will surely be her means to rebalance herself. She must not rush the process though, lest her body and soul break under the strain. No, for this journey she must build contracts with the spirits of each element in growing order. Even those she already has in her save fire and earth should be contracted at their lowest levels. When she has contracted all the powers of the world at one level, then she can seek out stronger spirits with which to contract and bring herself closer to balance. The spirit who she is one with will save her joining with water at the second level, but spirits rank in at least four tiers and even binding ones of every tier to herself may not be enough. She may one day should she survive even have to seek the direct blessings of Father Icarus and the Sister Goddesses to finally restore her balance.

“It will be a journey most long and trying before you Chainmaid, and the only hint I might bestow upon you is that to seek out Light lesser than Cardinal’s own, seek the servants of Vaerseal who will gladly show you on your path. And for that I have a gift for you.”

Stepping up to Chain, Mosvei in a movement faster than she was prepared for took her right hand and pressed her palm into his. There was a moment of warmth and Mosvei had stepped away again allowing Chain to see a soft glow in her hands for a moment before it faded.

“Your journey will take you well past the domains where the Cardinal Church is welcome, but where Cardinal’s Light is feared, Vaerseal’s is welcome. When you need to be welcomed in those lands, hold up your hand and let them see that you are blessed by Vaerseal.

“Now Chainmaid, young nāti, I bid you well on your journey.”

Turning away, Mosvei soon left Chain and Squawk alone upon the dock pondering the future before them. Chain studied her hand for a moment longer before looking up and turning her gaze onto the airship behind her. Joined by Drop, Chain left Squawk tossing his hands up in exasperation as she clenched her fist and smiled broadly.

“Of course that’d make you happy you idiot!”

Copyright © 2019 Joshua D Tarwater


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