Fantasy Fiction posted June 30, 2014 Chapters:  ...25 26 -27- 27 


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What To Do ... What To Do!

A chapter in the book The Trining

KLASCO'S LETTER

by Jay Squires


NEW TO “THE TRINING” FANTASY ADVENTURE?  You'll find summaries beginning with Cha. 2 and continuing to Cha. 25   What follows is a summary of Cha. 26:

Doctrex drafts a letter to High Count Gylo Typp of the Council of Twelve telling of immoral practices at Camp Kabeez.  He waits ten days to get an answer.  When it does arrive he finds there is another letter from Klasco.  He reads Gylo Typp’s letter first.  It assures him that all his demands were to be met, warns him against possible repercussions by those who would be affected, and advises him to be prudent.  He opens the letter from Klasco ....
 

Chapter Twenty-Seven (Part A)
 
 NOTE:  Part A is the 1st of 2 parts that together comprise the final chapter of Book I

 
My dear Brother Doctrex:
 
How I wish you were here right now, that I had my hands planted on your shoulders and was looking you directly in your eyes.  The news I have for you now I can hardly believe the truth of, though I was only once removed from seeing the proof of it with my own eyes.  By “once removed” I mean my wife, Metra, witnessed it.  And, it confirms everything you, my dear Brother, had been telling me from the beginning.

Be patient, though, while I let this unfold as it happened.  To do otherwise might allow my critical mind to scurry in and patch over what is unreasonable.  And so much of it is unreasonable.  See?  I must start at the beginning.

When I pulled my wagon to the front of our cottage, dear Metra raced through the door to meet me.  Even before hugging me, she spewed out all at once about the visions Sarisa had been having since we left
[there it was again: visions!]  The visions left her crying fitfully over the voice she heard—voices instructing her on what she had to do.  After she was cried out, she became contrite that she hadn't told us what the voice had made her do earlier.

Metra coaxed the story out of her about how she had pulled you to our plane from the one below.  Of course she believed Sarisa to about the same degree as I believed you; but for her, she figured it was Sarisa's overactive imagination.  Many children Sarisa's age have imaginary playmates, I'm sure you know.  What troubled Metra though (and still troubles me) was the voice demanding her allegiance.  It was not unlike the voices Klea said she heard—and still hears.

The next sleep when she again had the vision with the same consequences as before, Metra decided to accompany Sarisa to the spot where she claimed this happened.  Amazingly, Metra saw with her own eyes the chasm and even peered down into it.  She saw the other plane in all its desolation and aridity.  But, she saw no person.  Sarisa kept insisting, though, that there was someone there.  She heard a voice.


I stood up, strode across the room.  I didn’t want to read the rest of the letter, afraid of what I might discover.  I was filled with foreboding.  But, I had to read it.  I had to know!  I went back.

At this point, you can imagine how frightened Metra was.  She told Sarisa to come home and turned to leave, assuming she—our heretofore, perfectly obedient daughter—would be at her heels.  Instead, Sarisa dove into the chasm and seemed to hang there, halfway between two planes.  Metra, hysterical, was now tugging on Sarisa's feet, but she might as well have been trying to pull a tree out of the ground.

All the while, Metra heard Sarisa talking to someone from below.  This continued for some time and by now Metra was exhausted and resigned herself to merely holding on to her daughter's feet in case the magic force should stop.

What happened next, Metra could not tell me about without trembling all over and her voice breaking.  Her little daughter, our precious little star, was suddenly propelled backwards out of the chasm, like a cork from a bottle, her skinny, twig-like arms extended down in front of her and her tiny fingers clasped tightly to a person, a young lady, nearly triple her weight.  Both flew up and in an arc out of the chasm, landing softly on the meadow grass behind a disbelieving Metra.  The young lady cast a stunned gaze at Sarisa, then at Metra.


The words swam on the page.  "Axtilla," I whispered, "you were there my precious Axtilla.  It wasn't a dream!"  But, something dark and sinuous had found inroads to my brief elation.  I could not face its image in my mind now.  I took in a breath, wiped my eyes and returned to the letter.

This will come as no surprise to you that the lady's name is Axtilla.  To hear Metra speak of her, Brother, she is a beautiful woman.  She is also a woman of mystery—I believe because she didn't know my Metra and feared possible reprisal if she spoke too freely.  Clearly, though, when Axtilla asked about a man who might have come through in the way she had, there was tenderness, a caring, in her voice—as perhaps only another woman would have perceived.

I dragged my hand across my eyes again.

She got directions for where we were headed—for Kabeez—but without regard for distances, she left with some bread and cheese and riding a crossan that Metra gave her, even though she confessed she might not be able to return it.

Though the chances are slim, how I pray she has found you by now.  One needs a woman like Axtilla to be waiting for him when he returns from battle.

Brother, if you were here now, I would put my hands on your shoulders, look you straight in the eyes and confess my regret and apologies for any of the doubts I had about you.  I know you already have forgiven me because that is your nature.  But, I need to make the apology to heal my soul.

I pray that this finds you well … and with Axtilla in your arms.
 
Your Brother,
 
Klasco.

 
#
 
I folded the letter and replaced it in the envelope.  Dropping it and the other envelope in the drawer of my writing desk, I turned the key and checked that it was locked.  I put the key in my pocket.

His last words kept travelling a sort of loop through my mind: "I pray that this finds you well … and with Axtilla in your arms.”

With Axtilla in your arms.

I stared out the window.
 
How unsuited I was for leading an army into battle!  The Kabeezans needed—and High Count Gylo Typp believed he had—a man of unswerving dedication to command an army through treacherous territory and over icy conditions, to face and defeat, the powerful and feared Glnot Rhuether! 

The fact was, either of the Profue brothers was much better material than I for the job.  They were dedicated.  They were driven.  They were passionate.  I merely possessed an uncanny ability to convince a group of influential strangers that I was indeed something I knew I was not.  I wasn’t even privy to the source of that ability.

From the beginning of my life on this plane I knew the chance was slim to none that I could get to Glnot Rhuether on my own.
 
Once in enemy territory, I needed a structure and knowledge that, by myself, I didn't possess.  And, with Klasco’s assistance that solution materialized.  I was content to be one of the enlistees of the Kabeezan military.  To be the leader of the army?  That was beyond my ken.

Once I began my story, and initiated the process of fabrication … I started to see the cumulative effects of my words on the Council.  I painted nothing less than the portrait of one who was invincible.

Then, I became persuaded by my own words.

I knew I wasn’t the one doing the convincing, but the words were coming from my mouth and my mannerisms supported them.

Only I knew, deep inside, the extent of my fraudulence.  Only I knew that nothing about me was unswerving.  Not a bone of my body nor hair on my head was totally dedicated to this monumental labor.
 
What would unswerve me?  What would rip me away from my supposed dedication?  I knew the answer in an instant:

Axtilla!

I would abandon ten-thousand soldiers in a heartbeat to race to the side of an endangered Axtilla.  Her wellbeing was my only real compass.  She was my greatest good.  And I would be her most unswerving and dedicated protector.

The safety of Kabeez, the caring for my troops—these were a distant second to my Axtilla!

I paced in front of the window, from one wall to the other, touching it absently, turning and pacing back, touching that wall and returning.  I repeated her name with each fall of my foot, “Axtilla … Axtilla …”

Like a madman I crossed the room, my mind ricocheting inwardly, a tornado of warring thoughts.  Where is she?  Klasco’s post was ten days old.  Where is Axtilla, now?  She should have been here by now.  Unless … wait!  What was I thinking?

Of course ... she didn’t know!
*     *     *
CAST OF CHARACTERS
  • Doctrex:  The name Axtilla gave to the man who woke up on the shoure of an alien land without memory or identity.
  • Axtilla:  The young lady who discovered the ailing man on the shore, brought him to health and then held him captive, certain he is Pondria.
  • Glnot Rhuether:  According to Axtilla, the name of the dark entity who is destined to empower the lodging [the Trining] on their plane.
  • Klasco Braanz: Husband to Metra and father to Sarisa and Klea.
  • Metra Braanz: Wife to Klasco and mother to Sarisa and Klea
  • Sarisa Braanz: Klasco's and Metra's youngest daughter.
  • Klea Braanz: Klasco's and Metra's eldest daughter
  • Giln Profue: One of the three who helped Doctrex & Klasco in the Tavern Brawl.
  • Sheleck Profue: One of the three who helped Doctrex & Klasco in the Tavern Brawl & was stabbed.
  • Zurn: Intellectually challenged, Giln and Sheleck are watching out for him.
  • Crossans: They are similar to horses, but broader in the chest and sloping down to smaller haunches than horses.
  • Trining: 1) According to The Book of Kyre it is “a sudden, easy and complete translation of authority.”  2) A code word used by the enemies in the Far Northern Province marking the beginning of the all-out assault by Glnot Rhuether on the other provinces.
  • Papper: In the provinces, the ability of one language being automatically translated into another so there is no reason for one to learn a foreign language.
  • Commander Djars:  Commander of Camp Kabeez.  Doctrex’s nemesis while there.
  • Gylo Typp: High Count of The Council of Twelve. 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


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NOTE: Reluctantly, but at the request of many Fanstorians, I am including a Glossary of Characters and Terms. I trust the reader who measures his/her interest by the length of the "scanning bar" will keep in mind the space that list takes up.
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