The Hour Book 3 Chapter 1

Glyph couldn’t sleep. The thought of Tsach attacking Earth made him shiver in the cool morning breeze that drifted through his bedroom window. He had been sitting here for hours, contemplating the realities of life that had so swiftly been dumped upon him these past five years. Glyph thought about everything he had done, and wondered if something may have gone wrong. Would all of this still be happening if he had chosen his actions differently?

The sun rose silently as he rested in the large leather-bound chair beside the window. He could see the glint of its rays reflecting up at him from the Mother and Sister rivers that flowed off into the distance. The deep vibration in the rock window sill from the waterfall that fell from the mountain top above and plunged into the enormous bowl below was almost lost to him, as he had become so accustomed to the low rumble. A rooster crowed in the city near the base of the keep, and Glyph could now hear the sounds of his people waking to their morning chores and duties, feeding the livestock and preparing their wares for sale in the town market. He knew if he sat long enough the smells of freshly baked bread would soon rise to greet him, but it was a comfort he would not have this day.

He had thought about calling a meeting as soon as he saw the image in the tapestry, but realized it was the middle of the night and there really wasn’t anything he could do about it anyway. The thought of it was sobering, as the image of Tsach and his armies marching through a portal onto Earth, and Amos the only one there to stand in his way, crossed his mind again. Glyph stood from the chair and began to pick his clothes from the armoire in the corner. He could never quite get used to the doublet and hose that seemed to be the fashion here, so he instructed the tailors to make him several sets of pants. Since that time he noticed many of the city folk had been wearing them as well. Glyph couldn’t tell if it was because they were emulating their king’s choice of clothes or whether they just found them more practical.

Glyph pulled on his tunic and laced up his favorite pair of leather boots. He purposefully averted his eyes from straying toward the Living Tapestry; for once, he was actually fearful of what he might see there. Placing his crown upon his head, Glyph reached for the King’s Sword that hung on a peg beside his bed, and buckled it on. He knew the castle’s hired help would instantly realize something was amiss, as he only wore the sword when there was some serious shit about to go down. Thoughts raced through his mind as to what he could do, but Glyph knew there was no way to get to Earth that he currently knew of, and all he could do now was call a meeting, and get all the options on the table.

Taking a deep breath, he opened the door and stepped out into the hall. Sturim was at his side instantly.

“My lord does rise early this morning, is there…” Sturim paused, as Glyph saw him glance down at the King’s Sword. “…Anything I can do for you?” He asked hesitantly.

Glyph smiled and placed his hand on Sturim’s shoulder as they walked down the hall. “There is my friend. I am on my way to lady Ishea’s quarters, and from there we are headed to the war room. Could you inform General Zarish and Steward Toban to meet us there as soon as possible?”

Sturim paled slightly at the mention of General Zarish. “Of course my lord.” Sturim replied. “Is there an emergency my Lord?” He asked hastily.

‘Yes.’ Glyph said in his mind, but again realized there was nothing he could do about the ominous scene from the Tapestry, and that another hour or day or week would not make a difference. Glyph sighed. “No Sturim, only that I require their presence.”

“Very well my Lord.” Sturim replied and turned to go down a different hall.

“And Sturim?” Glyph called out.

“Yes Sire.”

“The General doesn’t bite.” Glyph said and smiled. “That I know of.”

Sturim replied with a weak smirk of his own and a short bow, and quickly went on his way.

Glyph turned left at the next intersection and knocked on Ishea’s door. After a short moment he heard her call out. “Enter.” Opening the door Glyph found her sitting on the side of her bed in a lacy nightgown. Glyph stepped around a pile of books on the floor and closed the door.

“You are up early, Glyph.” She said and slipped off her nightgown. She pulled on a purple tunic, and a pair of tanned leather pants floated effortlessly across the room into her hand. She bent over and began to put them on. “I see you are wearing the sword.” Ishea noted, a look of concern crossing her face. “Is there a problem?”

“You could say that.” Glyph replied. “I have called for a meeting in the war room, I’d like Miatsu to attend as well.”

Ishea stood up and looked him in the eye. “Very well, I will inform him.” She crossed the few steps toward Glyph and wrapped her arms around him. “What is this about?” She asked.

“I’m afraid there’s been a change in plans.” Glyph replied returning her embrace. “I’ll explain on the way to the war room.”

Ishea donned a black vest and buttoned it up in front of a large mirror. She pulled her hand across her silvery hair, and it immediately smoothed out and laid flat. They left the room together and walked the long hall to the staircase and started down toward the war room as Glyph filled her in on what he had seen on the Tapestry.

Toban met them at the war room door. “Fair morning to you Glyph, Lady Ishea.” Toban said with a quick bow.

“Fair morning, Toban.” Ishea responded in kind.

“Is something awry Glyph? I see you have donned the King’s Sword.” Toban asked as they entered the large room.

Glyph had created the war room with Zarish in mind, and had gone so far as to make her a private staircase leading upward from her quarters that could accommodate her large frame.

“Nothing immanent Toban, it just felt like the right thing to do, given the circumstance.” Glyph replied.

“And what circumstance might that be?” Miatsu asked as he appeared off to one side of the group. He pulled the hood of his crimson robe from his head and took a seat around the table.

Just then a large door in the back opened and Zarish entered. “I hope I am not late.” She quipped.

“Not at all, Zarish. Please, everyone have a seat.” Glyph said solemnly. “I have called you all here to inform you that Tsach has begun his invasion.”

“What? How is that possible?” Zarish said immediately.

“Where has the attack begun Glyph?” Toban followed.

“Well, that’s the real problem isn’t it? I saw Tsach’s invasion on the Tapestry last night. He isn’t invading M’atra. He is invading Earth.” Glyph replied.

“Earth. That is your home world is it not?” Miatsu chimed in.

“Yes. It is.”

“His evil knows no boundary.” Toban stated shaking his head. “Why would he attack a world full of innocents?”

“Tsach seeks to draw him out. Why hunt the prey, when you can have the prey come to you.” Zarish said pointedly.

“Zarish is likely correct.” Miatsu added, stroking his close-cropped beard. “It is also likely to be a trap.”

Glyph sighed and looked at Ishea, who sat staring off to one side. “How do you know that the Tapestry is not showing you the future?” She asked.

“I thought about that too. No, it’s happening now, every fiber of my being tells me so. The problem is, what can we do about it? I have found nothing definitive in any of my studies that shows how to open a portal to a specific world, and even if I could, should I?”

“Glyph, it is your home world. No one would think less of you for trying to defend it.” Toban stated.

“I know Toban, but I have sworn my oath to protect M’atra.” Glyph stated.

“If Tsach is attacking Earth, and does not get the result he wants, M’atra will be next. It is only a matter of time. In this case, defending your home world would be defending M’atra.” Miatsu said.

“Miatsu is correct.” Ishea added. “Though the point is moot if there is no way to get there.”

“Is there anything about this in the prophecies?” Glyph asked her.

“Not that I remember. Most of them have either been fulfilled, or proven to be untrue.” Ishea replied.

“Drayden would know.” Glyph mumbled to himself.

“Do you refer to the Drayden prophecies?” Toban spoke up. “They may very well be a myth. No one has ever seen them.”

“They exist Toban, I’m sure of it. Drayden knew all about his replacement before Amos even showed up. He even knew I would be the one to bring him here. If he wrote them down, someone else would have to have seen them, or at least know where they are.” Glyph assured him.

“But who? If he did indeed write them down it was nearly a thousand years ago. Anyone who saw them would be dead by now.” Toban conjectured.

“Not necessarily.” Miatsu said somewhat subdued. All eyes turned toward the middle-aged wizard. “There is one person who may know, who is still alive.” Glyph raised one eyebrow questioningly.

“Morracor!” Ishea shouted out.

“If anyone knows for certain it would be him. He was Drayden’s apprentice after all.” Miatsu concluded.

“When are they due back, Ishea?” Glyph asked her.

“By the end of the week. We decided to postpone the date of the wedding until Lobrein and Prianna had time to locate him. The way Lobrein spoke after they found him several weeks ago, it should only be a few more days at best.”

“That’s something at least.” Glyph said and sighed again. “What about Albast?” He asked Miatsu, and caught the look Zarish flashed him from across the table.

“Albast?” Miatsu questioned.

“Did he ever teach you how to open a portal, or leave some sort of detailed instruction somewhere?” Glyph clarified, and noticed that Zarish relaxed a bit.

“I have opened dimensional gates before, but that is vastly different then creating one from nothing. The real problem is knowing where to put the other end. In that regard it is much like teleporting; you have to know where you are going in order to go there. Albast showed me how once, but because I did not have the technical skill to do it on my own, I pursued other studies. I suppose if such a set of instructions did exist the only place I could think to look for them would be at Toleth’va.” Miatsu said.

“The monastery.” Glyph said thinking out loud.

“Yes. It was his first home here, and no one save the high priest has access to the full repository of writings they have collected over the last seven millennia. I know, I tried once shortly after Albast’s death, but Verto refused to grant me full access.”

Glyph thought about Verto, and how the priests of Priam still held Ishea responsible for his death, and how Ishea blatantly denied their claims and refused to talk about the whole situation. He knew he wouldn’t get any help from her on this one. “Maybe I should try. Perhaps a request from the Great One holds a little more weight.”

“It may be worth the attempt. I personally would be greatly interested to see if they held any of Albast’s work, possibly from before Lobrein had arrived.” Miatsu added.

“I am not sure if you will have any luck, Glyph, given our current state of affairs with the kingdom of Priam. They have, after all, severed all ties with the other countries, with the possible exception of Deltur.” Toban said.

“Still, I think I have to try.” Glyph said.

“I agree. The people of Earth may need our help.” Zarish said, staring intently at Glyph.

“Zarish, you really do care about these things, do you not?” Ishea asked, and grinned slyly.

“No.” Zarish tried to clarify. “I only meant that because it is Glyph’s home world, we should help defend it. Better to fight Tsach there than to wait for him to come here.”

Glyph knew what she meant. If Tsach was already invading Earth, then Albast and Amos may truly be in need of help. He had thought about telling them all right then that Albast was still alive, but decided against it. Best to wait and be certain of the invasion, than to let the cat out of the bag too soon. He knew Ishea was going to be hurt that he didn’t tell her, but if Albast was right, the rest of them must not know he was alive until just the right moment.

“You’re right Zarish, trap or not the war has begun. If I can save M’atra by saving Earth, all the better.” Glyph stated. “I guess that’s everything. Thank you all for your input. As soon as the others arrive, I will head for Priam.”

With that the meeting ended, and everyone filed out of the room except for Ishea. “Glyph, what about the wedding?” She asked.

“I know, Ishea. It might be best if we postpone it a little while longer, at least until I get back from Priam. It would only be another week at best. I have to find a way to Earth, and it has to be done soon. Besides, Amos is there, and we need him back with us. He is no match for Tsach, but something tells me he would try to take him on anyway.”

Ishea pouted a bit but nodded her head yes. “I would rather you have nothing to do with Priam, you know how I feel about it. I also realize if what you seek is there than nothing I say will stop you from going.”

“I’m glad you understand. I know this puts the wedding plans in limbo right now, but I promise, as soon as I return we will be married.” Glyph responded.

The next two days were business as usual. The state of the military was placed on full alert, and training was stepped up in preparation. Pigeons were sent flying to the other kingdoms to inform them of the new situation. Glyph knew if he couldn’t find a way to open a portal, that Tsach would waste no time in setting his sights on M’atra.

On the morning of the third day, Lobrein, Prianna, and Morracor returned to Kivas, and the city’s somber mood lightened a bit with the festivities of their homecoming. Ishea and Lobrein introduced Prianna and Morracor to Glyph. Prianna was nearly a head shorter than Ishea and very lean. She wore a plain green dress that ended at the knee, and her hair was twisted in braids that were inlaid with sea-foam colored flowers that set off the green color of her eyes.

Morracor was draped in a gray robe that appeared to be made of animal hair. He seemed to be rather withdrawn and did not say much. Glyph figured he was a bit shy, and decided it would be best to talk with him in private, rather than with the rest of the group. After the noon meal, which had turned into a feast at their arrival, Glyph pulled Morracor aside and they retreated to the solitude of the library to talk.

“I’m sure all this comes as somewhat of a surprise to you.” Glyph started off saying. “And I realize you must be tired from your long journey, but there are a few things I would like to discuss with you.”

“Certainly King Glyph, though I am not sure what I could tell you that the others could not.” Morracor replied.

“First, I’m not that big on titles, so just call me Glyph.” He said as he paced slowly back and forth. “You are familiar with Drayden’s work, correct?”

“Master Drayden taught me everything I know. It pained me greatly to learn that he was alive this whole time. Fortunately my grief for his passing was over a long time ago.” Morracor said and paused, as if remembering the old wizard. “Was there something specific that you were interested in?”

“As a matter of fact, yes. Have you heard of the Drayden prophecies?” Glyph asked, getting right to the point.

Morracor looked somewhat surprised. “The Drayden prophecies?” He questioned.

“A body of prophecy that Drayden recorded from the book of evil, shortly before he and Lobrein left for Degruthras.” Glyph explained.

“Hmm, I did not know of this book of evil until Lobrein caught Prianna and I up to date, but he did spend most of the time before Albast’s death in seclusion. He, Albast, Lobrein, and the high priest of Priam met quite frequently as I recall. If Master Drayden did record such a work, I am sure that I have never seen it.” Morracor said.

Glyph’s hopes sank. “Are you certain?” Glyph asked in desperation.

Morracor looked at Glyph thoughtfully. “My tenure as Drayden’s student had long since past by that point, so I was often not with him at that time. I do remember trying to contact him and was unable to do so on several occasions. He and the other Masters had become somewhat secretive before the end. It is very possible he could have done so without my knowledge.”

Glyph sighed. “Very well, Morracor. Thank you for your time.”

“I am sorry I could not be of more help to you, Glyph.” Morracor said as he stood and stepped toward the door.

As the wizard opened the door to leave Glyph called out. “Morracor.”

“Yes, Glyph?” He replied, as he paused in the doorway.

“You said Drayden spent a lot of time in seclusion; where was he then?” Glyph asked as an after thought.

“Toleth’va.” Morracor answered.

“Thank you again, Morracor.” Glyph said, as the wizard nodded and left.

‘The monastery at Priam.’ Glyph thought to himself as he sat down at the table, and looked at the map already laid out there. It can’t be a coincidence, and it was nothing that Lobrein couldn’t have told him, though he had never asked. Lobrein had always acted as if the whole idea of Drayden recording prophecies was mere myth, but Albast had mentioned that all four of them, Drayden, Lobrein, Albast, and Verto had spent time alone studying the Tome of Dark Lore. They all had seen prophecies that were explicit to each of them individually. If Drayden recorded prophecies from the Tome, then why not Lobrein, or even Verto? Glyph realized he could not broach the subject with Lobrein without explaining how he knew that they had each spent time with the book, and that could be disastrous. It would seem the deeper he got into this, the more mysteries presented themselves. He only knew one thing for sure, if there were any answers to be found, they resided at Toleth’va.

Glyph retuned to the celebration as things were winding down, with the exception of a heated argument between Prianna and Zarish. It would seem a millennia of hatred was not overcome by simple introductions.

“You are users! You rape the land of its resources, and seek the death of all living things in your path.” Prianna was saying, her voice escalating in volume.

“I have not used anything, and there are some among my people who believe as you do. Do not allow your prejudice to condemn an entire race.” Zarish replied.

“How dare you?” Prianna shouted leaping from her chair. “Do not compare your foul and despicable race with me, they are nothing like me!” she yelled shaking her finger at Zarish, who leaned forward baring her fangs.

“Prianna!” Lobrein snapped. “That is enough!”

Prianna turned toward Lobrein, and her eyes blazed a deep green. “A thousand years I have grieved over the deaths of my masters. Do not presume to silence me with your words, I have grown beyond that.”

Morracor and Miatsu turned away, and to Glyph’s surprise Lobrein sat back down in her chair, the guilt of having lied to all of them etched clearly upon her face. Ishea looked mortally wounded and cast her eyes upon Glyph silently pleading for him to make this right.

“Prianna, may I have a word with you.” Glyph asked her calmly.

“Say whatever you like, I can hear quite well.” She said, her eyes still burning like emerald fire.

“Alone.” Glyph added.

“Alone? Why? There are no secrets held here, at least there did not used to be.” She said, casting another wicked gaze at Lobrein.

Zarish sat on the edge of her seat, prepared for attack; Glyph could tell by the way her fingers reflexively twitched at her side. Glyph was about to take Prianna outside by force as his agitation began to stretch the limits of his control, when suddenly he decided on a different approach. “Please.” He asked and held out his arm, playing the part of an escort.

Prianna blinked twice and stared at him a moment, before acquiescing. “Yes, of course.” She replied and took his arm. “The Great One wishes to speak with me.” She said matter-of-factly as if trying to cover her own embarrassment over the whole incident. A moment later, Glyph had escorted her out of the banquet room, and they strolled leisurely toward the library. “So what does the Great One wish to speak to me about? Is it the wedding? I understand you and Ishea will soon be wed; good for you, I am so happy for the both of you.” She said.

Glyph found himself at a loss for words. Two minutes ago she was ready to go head to head with a demon, not to mention Lobrein, and now she acted as if nothing had happened. “Uhm, yeah. Thanks.” He finally blurted out. Hoping to keep her calm he thought about something to ask her. “Ishea says you are like an older sister to her, but you both look to be the same age. How is that possible?”

“Oh my yes, I am nearly two thousand years older than her. I arrived in M’atra when I was only sixteen. I was a slave on my world, you know. A well treated slave, but a slave nonetheless. Do you know why? Because my people act upon their feelings first, not like most places. Not like here, where people think before they act. Our feelings controlled our behavior because the environment on our home world was harsh, and hesitation often meant death. For this we were persecuted, hunted like vermin, strapped into obedience collars, and made to do the bidding of our captors. All for our own protection, they said. I had been raised in captivity, and when I arrived here I was finally free, finally able to express myself the way I wanted, the way I was intended to. So I was sixteen, and I still had to follow the rules here, but I was free, so of course I decided to stay. I too became long-lived as the others were, but not until I reached maturity.”

“I’m not sure I follow you.” Glyph understated. He was beginning to think she had a few loose screws rattling around inside her head.

“I like how you say that: Iam. No, that is not quite right, it is more like Iem. Anyway, when people stop regenerating and begin to die, that is when we stopped aging. For most people it is around their mid-twenties. Ishea came to us as an infant. If she had not been able to mature, she would be a three thousand year old baby. Oh, would that not be funny? So even though I am older, we both look to be the same age. Was this what you really wanted to talk to me about?”

So, there was a method to her madness after all Glyph thought. “Not exactly. I’m just not sure how to bring it up without causing you to feel upset, or even angry.” Glyph said as they stepped into the library, and Glyph pulled the door closed behind him.

“It is fine, you may ask me anything.” She said agreeably.

“Why do hate Zarish? You haven’t even gotten the chance to know her.”

“I do not need to know her to know she is a demon. Surely you can see that.” Prianna replied, and tilted her head questioningly.

Glyph could see now why Ishea acted the way she did sometimes, if she grew up emulating Prianna as an older sibling. It also explained why Prianna acted the way she did in the banquet hall. She acted on her emotions first, then thought things through later. It boggled his mind to think that a whole race of people lived this way. Clearly she had issues with demons, most likely because of the first war with Drathus, and she obviously was having a difficult time dealing with the fact that Lobrein wasn’t dead. Perhaps she just needed to get a few things off her chest.

“So what’s your beef with demons?”

“My beef? Are you asking me why I hate them?”

Glyph nodded yes.

“They are hateful war-mongering creatures who want nothing more than to kill and destroy every living thing in their path. They are all that is evil and wrong in the cosmos. You are the Great One, why do you need me to tell you this? Do you not already know this to be true?” She said, her voice beginning to get louder.

“You can call me Glyph, Prianna. As to your question, it is not true. Not all demons are as you describe them.”

Prianna’s brow furled. “How can you say that? They are a scourge, a disease!” She said.

“Just hear me out. Zarish swore an oath to me. She helped us and the Hexzu escape Degruthras, and she fought and killed her own kind without reservation. She saved Steward Toban’s life, and has trained the military on how to defeat demons. Lobrein and Ishea have accepted her, and believe it or not, so have the people of Kivastor.” Glyph explained.

Prianna sat there shaking her head ‘no’. “Do you not understand what injustice they continue to force upon us? The demons are subverting you, and the others as well.”

“But Lobrein and Ishea –.” Glyph started to protest, and was quickly cut off.

“—Are being subverted! Lobrein told me about the book of evil, they touched it, they read it! Her, Drayden, Albast, all of them. There is a great rift in our family, Glyph, and the demons are to blame. Their evil rancor has spread among us like flame through a field of grass. Our great masters, rent by the lies and deceit they found in the demon’s book. It is an abomination of the worst kind. I trusted Albast, Lobrein, and Drayden, I believed them, I grieved for them! And it was nothing but a lie!” Prianna shouted, her eyes a brilliant green once again.

Glyph wondered just what he had done to get stuck dealing with this lunatic who refused to listen to reason, and then he understood. Someone who could not experience reason could not be influenced by it. Giving her logical answers only served to make her angrier, when what she really wanted was an emotional response. Glyph sat down beside her and looked her in the eye.

“Then isn’t it up to us to forgive them? Shouldn’t we show them compassion and understanding?” Glyph asked her calmly.

Prianna’s eyes quickly reverted to normal, and stared at him once again. Then they filled with water and tears began to roll down her cheeks. “I do not know if I am able.” She sobbed, and quickly broke down into a fit of uncontrollable crying and wailing.

When she threw arms around Glyph, he quickly sent Ishea a message telepathically to come at once. He sat there for several minutes, as his shoulder became soaked with her tears. After what seemed an eternity, Ishea finally entered the study, and placing her hand on Prianna’s back she looked up at her. They looked at each other for a moment and embraced as the sobbing started all over again. Glyph motioned to Ishea that he was going to leave, and Ishea mouthed ‘thank you’.

As soon as Glyph made it into the hallway and the door had closed, he stripped off the half-soggy tunic and quickly conjured up another one, putting it on as he walked to his quarters. Glyph had hoped he would find some much needed solitude in his chambers, but when he opened his door he found Lobrein was there waiting for him.

“Glyph, may I ask what happened between you and Prianna?” Lobrein stated.

Glyph walked to the window and stared out at the city below. “She’s bitter, Lobrein. She’s upset because she feels betrayed by the people she loved the most. People she thought were dead.” He said.

“You mean me.”

“Yes, I mean you.” Glyph said as he turned to face her. “And I’m guessing by his demeanor that Morracor feels the same way, and even Miatsu to some extent. Prianna blames the demons, and claims you have been subverted by your contact with the Tome of Dark Lore.”

Lobrein sighed heavily. “We underestimated the impact our leaving for Degruthras would have on the rest of them. We also did not realize the time difference between worlds was so vast.” She sighed again. “I guess I understand how they must feel about me. I was their teacher, and Prianna’s mentor. The blame truly lies with me.” She admitted, and became strangely silent.

After a few moments Glyph spoke up. “Don’t you go and get all depressed on me, too.”

“No, I am not depressed, but I am saddened by the outcome of my actions.” She said and stood up. “Eventually Prianna will understand that what I did was for the greater good, and things will settle down.” Lobrein said as she crossed the room to his door. She paused for a moment. “I thank you, Glyph. You have impressed me yet again, and this time you did not even use magic.” Glyph nodded his acceptance of her praise, and then she exited his chambers.

Glyph took a deep breath and let it out as he plopped down in the chair beside the window. Rubbing his temples, he could feel a slight headache brewing; the first one he could remember having since his return to Kivas nearly two years ago. Glyph spent the rest of the afternoon preparing for his journey to Priam, packing clothes and gathering supplies for his trip. He informed the stable master to have O’dista ready the next morning, and had his dinner served in his quarters. Glyph had had enough company for one day.

The next morning, Glyph ate breakfast with Ishea as usual; her mood was somewhat somber as they ate. After they had finished, Glyph checked his pack one last time while Ishea stared at the Living Tapestry.

“Glyph, what does it show now?” Ishea asked. She had never been able to see the images that he did, and Glyph could tell her curiosity could not be contained.

“I’ve been trying not to look at it.” He replied, trying to conceal his apprehension.

“Why?”

“I don’t want to see something I can’t do anything about.” Glyph answered, and belted on the King’s Sword.

“Oh.”

“Is Prianna alright?” He asked, trying to change the subject.

“Hm? Oh, yes. She will be fine, these things take time.” She said, and turned her head slightly to one side. “Glyph, what if there was another way for you to find out how to open a portal to Earth, without going to Priam?”

Glyph shot her a look. “What are you saying?” He demanded, staring at her.

“You could try the Tome. It showed me how to do it when I rescued you from your incarceration on Earth. Perhaps it would show you how to find the dimension in which Earth resides.” She suggested.

“No, absolutely not. I can’t even believe you would bring that up. You convinced me years ago that the Tome was evil, and only served its own dark purpose. When I used it in hopes of finding a way to destroy the portal to Degruthras, it only showed me what it wanted me to do, not what should be done. And when I found my own solution I realized that there were other ways, better ways, of doing something than using the book’s quick fix and paying for it dearly.” Glyph scolded.

“But if it means saving lives on Earth by getting you there faster, is it not worth the chance? It showed me how to do it, it might show you as well.”

“And it made you go to Degruthras to do it, which led to your capture, torture, and, well, whatever Cruix did to you.” Glyph shook his head side to side. “Even if it did show me how to open a gate to Earth, I’m not sure I’d take it; especially knowing that the Tome wanted me to go there.” He said, and slung his bag over one shoulder.

Glyph walked over to her and put his arms around her, then kissed her forehead. “I’m going to Toleth’va. You will be fine, and we’ll be married as soon as I return. Don’t worry so much.” He told her. As an afterthought he looked up at the Tapestry. “It shows me fighting Tsach in the desert.” He wasn’t even going to mention it was on top of thousands of dead and dying men, Hexzu, Demons and Grull.

“Are you winning?” She asked, without bothering to look up.

“It’s too soon to tell.” He said and left.

He stopped by and gave Toban some last minute instructions, and made a point of seeing Zarish, mainly to apologize for Prianna’s behavior the night before. Zarish informed him that Lobrein had already apologized for her, and had explained Prianna’s condition of reacting to her feelings before thinking things through. Glyph then suggested that she steer clear of Prianna for awhile, and tried to explain her intense hatred of demons as best as he could.

At the stables, Glyph mounted O’dista, and rode out through the main gate. He rode fast and hard and within three hours he had nearly made it to the split in the Mother river. There, he made for the pylon, and activated it, as Ishea had shown him how to do on several occasions. The crystals at the top and bottom blazed an emerald green just like the runes on the side of the pylon, and with a faint sucking noise an arc of blue energy connected the two crystals creating the gate. With a quick tap the arc widened enough for O’dista to enter, Glyph mounted the horse and rode past the stone obelisk, and found himself at the southern tip of the Great Lake. ‘This won’t take long’ he thought. ‘A few days travel to get there, a few days there, and a couple of days to come home again. I’ll be back before they know it’. With that Glyph settled back into his saddle and made for the next pylon.

 

 

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