Everybody’s Looking for Someone

Mellia — Elfs

????, Fire Season, Season/Illusion Week


Fire Season/Illusion Week/Clayday/very early morning, in Venlar’s room. [[[s01:session-42|Session 42]]]


Venlar mentions, sometime early in the morning, that he is hoping his older brother is unharmed. “Jengharl must have fought by now. There must have been battle, surely?” In the dim light of dawn, the scar makes his expression less worried than his voice. This room has a set of oiled horn windows, and it being Fire Season he left the shutters open. He has pretty eyes, if the scar is ignored.

“I do not know if there has been battle. No one mentioned such things to me,” Mellia answers. “However, the priestess who was minding the temple of Chalana Arroy has returned to her home. Perhaps your brother will come home soon.”

“That might be it, then. I could ask Orlanth if he lives, but… it seems impatient. He will come home. I have to believe it.” Venlar blinks towards the windows where the light is strengthening. “I would be the heir, if he died. I do not know how I feel about that.” He looks worried. Maybe he does know how he feels.

“There are many ways to serve your people,” Mellia soothes. “You would make an excellent lawgiver. You could appoint Hengrast warleader and let him do the fighting.”

“Yamia would be the war leader. Maybe. Or champion. Probably that. Together, we all make a very good Chief. If we were arithmetic we would add up to being father.” He smiles and reaches for his tunic. “Ugh. All of this needs washing. The thralls don’t come in if I have guests.”

Mellia nods. “Yamia would make a fine champion.” She sighs. “I suppose I had best consider getting dressed and being findable. May the White Lady grant my cousins have stayed out of trouble for just one night.”

“Oh, we have another healer, and they can’t be as bad as when we were young. Three of us all the same age, all with the Movement of Orlanth in us. Would you like me to find you something to wear while your clothes are washed, or are you leaving today?”

“I must ask the others, but I think we may be leaving today. I will miss you, Venlar.”

“You can write to me?” He suggests. “I’ll think fondly of you too. And I can come to Wilmskirk easily enough. If you want.” He leaves it as her choice.

“I need to learn how,” Mellia says, turning bright red. “We won’t be in Wilmskirk long, I think. My true home is in Colymar lands. I promised the Blue Tree and the Green Fish to build a temple and heal them. I’m sure I can come visit, though.”

“Still in Sartar,” he says with a shrug. “I could bring my sister to scare the Clan. Green Fish are Malani, though! That’s an odd combination. Are the Blue Tree not a peaceful Clan?”

“They are. Yamia will be bored silly.”

“But the Malani are under Humakt’s shield. How are you building a Temple for both?”

“Some of the land I was given by Prince Kallyr used to belong to the Green Fish. This is the next best thing to returning the land. I am hoping to bring peace to the area.”

“Aaah. Right. I do not know the history there too well. Take writing lessons. Write and tell me everything. I will send you letters about how the fish are. My ones, not the Malani Clan. Or hire a scribe. I could send a literate messenger, but that gets expensive. Or a bard, to recite your words. Or just make marks on parchment and pretend, and I will read into it anything I like.” Venlar has finally managed to get into his tunic without getting stuck, which took a couple of tries.

“I will do something,” Mellia promises. She gets dressed at that point.

Venlar does the same, after calling at his door for breakfast to be brought and checking if Mellia wants anything.

Mellia would love breakfast, if it’s not too much trouble.

Someone else will go to the trouble. He makes sure to note no meat, no eggs, and then throws himself down lazily on his bed again. “Father will be accompanying you all. What on the face of Holy Ernalda did the High Sword write to him?”

“The truth, of course. Those relics are very powerful and probably very badly needed elsewhere. I am impressed by the trouble the High Sword is taking.”

“I don’t know him. He died before I was born.” Venlar adds with a puzzled look, “I’m told I look like him.”

“You do,” Mellia answers.

“Of course. You’ve met him.” Venlar shrugs, and might be on the verge of asking a question when there is a tap on the door. “Come,” he calls, and a thrall brings in a low table with food on it, setting it on the carpet with a bow to his master.
Venlar nods, and gets up jerkily. “Thank you, Dahran. That will be all until we are done. Afterwards, the beds and I want some clean clothes taken out.”

Mellia gets up. She almost says something, but is silent until Dahran leaves.

Venlar pulls a couple of felted blankets from his bed and folds them up, concentrating on the task so that they do not strike anything and knock things over. “It looks like everything here is things you can eat,” he says, and manages to keep his sleeves out of the bowls.

“Thank you!” Mellia is genuinely surprised and touched. Apparently the kitchen staff, who are probably the biggest gossips in the hall, if not the village, approve of her.

After a little while, Venlar asks, “Would you tell me about him? I know it’s not the same man who was my uncle, but I wonder.”

Mellia nods. “The man I know who looks very like you is the High Sword of the Boldhome temple of Humakt. He is wise, clever and very honorable. He also dislikes Ducks. Berra swears this man isn’t trying to kill her, or the rest of us either, but I often wonder.”

“Um?” Venlar does not even bother to repeat the word ‘kill’. He just leaves it hanging there, unsaid.

Mellia explains, “He keeps sending Berra on missions that could easily kill us all.”

“I’ve heard of Berra. Those must be hard things.” Venlar puzzles over this news. The expression is cute, and entirely unlike anything his uncle would do.

“They have been,” Mellia says with a smile for Venlar’s cute expression.

“I’m glad you’re well, and here. Would Berra Humakti know about him, then? Would she mind me asking?”

“I am sure Berra Humakti wouldn’t mind at all. She knows him better than I. Would you like me to introduce you?”

“Yes please. She was sleeping outside the pig-hut. We could order her breakfast. I don’t think she knows that there are thralls for people and thralls for the household. Guests can be brought things.” Venlar does not try to get the last out of his bowl.

“Let’s order her breakfast. That’s a splendid idea.” By now, Mellia has devoured her breakfast.