The Legacies of Lyrei, Chapter 7-8

Invitations are sent. Tim visits Elf Carron’s

Chapter 7.

The Petris estate.

Isarrel activated Ilyana and she said, “Some people want to reward your efforts and chat with you about how things are going to go in the future. Here is a portal code. Use the secret portal in a five day. Before you come, the people were hoping that you could have somebody take a look at the Umevan estate.”

“I will send Haladavar. The Conclave is coming and we should restock the cellar.”

“Excellent.”

“I will bring some bottles with me.”

Chatsrey

Móreliante activated Jestina and she said, “Some people want to reward your efforts and chat with you about how things are going to go in the future. Here is a portal code. Use the portal you have before in a five day. Bring what you have on recent events.”

“This is the first time in a long time that you have asked me to speak with anyone? Has the covert communication become less important?”

“To an extent. Important things are happening and they need to be discussed.”

“Very well.”

Zirgoccol

Ayre activated Arafiel and he said, “Some people want to reward your efforts and chat with you about how things are going to go in the future. Here is a portal code. Use the secret portal in a five day. Bring what you have on recent events and on the Beinans and the Umevan.”

“I will do so.”

Silver Mountain

Jorhaek activated Amaris, something he had not done in the last three years. He would not have done so now, but there had been turmoil and he wanted some answers after the five cities. Amaris appeared and said, “Where have you been?”

“Busy. There has been a lot going on.”

“Tell me about it.”

Jorhaek did and when he was done,” Amaris said, “Some people want to reward your efforts and chat with you about how things are going to go in the future. Here is a portal code. Use the secret portal in a five day. Bring what you have on recent events and on the Beinans and the Umevan.”

“I will do so.”

The Umevan Estate.

Haladavar stepped out of the portal with his horse and looked around. The changes since had last been at the estate were rather dramatic. A large area near the dam was fenced off, with a gate and guards. Several buildings were in the process of being erected and the winery was being expanded. He mounted his horse, and dodging traffic headed to the castle. As he approached the castle, Nym called out, “Haladavar, what brings you here?”

“The season begins and the cellars are a bit low. I was hoping to get a reserve before the rush for the Conclave.”

“Let me take you to the winery then. The winery is operating more or less independently from the House at this time.”

“Why the change?”

“Keeping things simple. The  Umevan want one set of books for the estate, one for the electrical business and one for the winery. That way House expenses don’t get tied to the electrical business or winery.”

“Doesn’t that make your job more complicated?”

“Not at all, as I just have the household to deal with, here, the Cloud City and Ishendell. Stadlee is responsible for the electrical side, and reports to Bubil Kil and Taerel is in charge of the winery.”

“I see that the winery is being expanded.”

“It is indeed. We have a high demand and Taerel wants to be able to double the pressing this year. So he is expanding.”

“What about some of the other construction?”

“That is the various Umevan ladies. They have their little projects, the theatre, the library and other things as well as building houses so that they have places when they are here. Most of it is foundations at this point, but things should be interesting later in the year.”

“Things are looking up, then?”

“They are, indeed.”

“Why is that area fenced off?”

“I can’t speak of that. There are Inquisition issues involved. Why don’t I take you to the winery and introduce you?”

Nat turned to Stadlee and said, “I’ll see you again.”

“I know that it is necessary, but I will miss you.”

“I’ve gotten used to the place. On the other hand, I understand the old elf’s point. They will come here looking for me, and with Rilldia expecting, me being taken again will be a bad thing. So we go to Ironton.”

“The lord will be glad to see you.”

Nat laughed. “I think that he will. I’m not going to allow myself to get dragged into his projects too deeply.”

“He has been rather tame of late.”

“I think that he has been busy and doing things that we haven’t heard about.”

“Do you think that they will come?”

“I think that they will. They will be looking for the things that they don’t have and the skills they do not have. So they will come here, looking for those things. It is better that they are gone, or cannot be had.”

“Running the transumuter at full power?”

“That will force them to be careful and running that way will poison the fuel rods by the time they conduct their attack. They will not be able to pull them without making things a mess, so they will not have any Plutonium until they can switch the fuel rods and there are no new fuel rods here at present.”

“There are the other things that we have done here as well.”

“Yes we have. I leave the rest for you. Remind the old elf that we will have to put things back together when this is over.”

Stadlee laughed. “I will.”

“Then I must go.”

Chapter 8.

The Arsenal, Cleadsgate.

Tarranth was activated and with Tim was a man in an admiral’s uniform. Tim said, “Tarranth, this is Admiral Harper. He wants to speak to you about the Mage Wars.”

“Welcome admiral. You must have a serious reason to come to me, as you haven’t before. I have seen you in the background in places”

“I wanted a different perspective from Harald’s concerning recent events.”

“So you have been discussing the events with Harald.”

“Yes. I know that seemings talk to each other, but I want another perspective. You were not in favor of Harald launching a Scourge devise against Cleads. That is well known. What isn’t known was what your alternatives were.”

“I was thinking that the fleet being here meant that we could dispatch one of the Jumpers and a Scourge devise to a place they valued greatly and destroy the thing there. In the end, Harald destroyed the fleet. I was not sure that he believed that the thing was there at the time.”

“We found it, or at least we found something in the Junglelands.”

“Do you have pictures?”

“Of the base. We haven’t been able to get pictures of the devise itself because it’s inside an empty lava chamber in a volcano.”

“That actually makes sense. There was an ancient folio in the Mage Academy of a devise that was called the divinity energizer. It was one of the most guarded things in the library, so we all had to get a look at it, of course. Actually fabricating a devise would be difficult and actually getting the mana to power it and the rest of the civilization at the time was not possible. The Darkmage, along with his relatives and friends set out to get the mana by fair means or foul, which led to the Mage Wars.”

“They seem to think that the conditions are right to attempt the final steps. The important question I have is what will happen if they do so?”

“Honestly, I don’t know. I think that it is fairly obvious what they expect to happen.”

“Total control over everything and themselves as new gods.”

Tim looked at the admiral and said, “That hasn’t come up before.”

“Tim, my kids and family grew up on Elf Carran tales. That includes the things that my mother and sister have commissioned. So I have seen his earliest things and The Rising of The Gods caused a lot of turmoil and controversy with the temples when it was published and Taeren’s publisher only ran one print run, so it hasn’t been seen for a very long time. It has been the gap in the series that has existed for all that time.

“For the most part, the book has been forgotten except for collectors, but it was a cautionary tale about hubris and greed. I’ve never asked Taeren where he got the story and his source may have been in the House. In any case, it’s fairly obvious that the Project was using certain things and planning things a certain way. Tarranth, do you think that the devise will actually work?”

“I don’t know. It may do something, it may just dump the mana, or it may explode. If it does, the explosion will be very large and probably start the volcano when it goes off.”

“Do you think that if we gave them what they want, that the devise will fail?”

“I don’t know. I don’t have enough to know what they have done.”

“If they start up the devise and we drop a Scourge devise on it, how bad do you think that it could be?”

“Very bad. The volcano will probably go up in the explosion and possibly depopulate large sections of the Orcenlands, the Kingdom and Southern Apua. At the time I contemplated doing that, there was no possibility of the devise being active and the area near the Junglelands was much smaller. The Junglelands have shrunk significantly.”

“Ok. Tim, I want you to find out what will happen with the devise if certain conditions happen. You can go down the list just like I just did. This will be a detached assignment. You will have highest priority access to whatever you think you need. For the next two moons, get me everything you can on this thing.”

“Why me? I’m just a junior lieutenant.”

“You were the head of the spook club, you found the Steward’s devises, you have been looking into ancient Imperial technologies and if they will go boom or not, you have been in ordnance and you have Tarranth here to help you. You can also draw on family resources and dig into the old family files without causing any raised eyebrows. Frankly, the list of officers that I can trust to do this is very short and they are performing tasks that cannot be abandoned easily. That includes Rob.

“I will add that the rest of us fighting these people have all had our “Why me?” moments. You’ve seen some of the things that your fellow officers do to each other. Do you think that I could trust your fellow Academy class member Washout with this?”

“I wouldn’t have known that you know that nickname, sir.”

“I know more than the ensign thinks that I do. Certain talents attract attention. Sometimes you need a Washout. Based on the latest reports he has actually improved greatly.”

“I will have to see that to believe that, sir.”
Chatsrey.

Mardi smiled as the young man in a navy uniform came through the door of the Scriptoria. “Welcome to Elf Carran’s. May I help you?”

“I’m not sure. I was hoping to speak with Elf Carran about something he once published a book about.”

“He is away at present on a tour. What book is it? We should have all of them.”

“Not this one. This book was one of his earliest books and had some issues with the temples. The book is titled, The Rising of The Gods. Apparently it was about some mages who wanted to become gods, or did. The admiral told me about it, but I don’t know his mother and I was hoping that Elf Carran could tell me more about the story.”

“Why does your admiral want to know more about the story?”

“That is classified.”

“This is about the dark ones, isn’t it? I was an Animal in Lain Othrond until I was rescued. Becoming gods is probably exactly what they want. Certainly they treated us like animals.” Mardi pulled out a catalog and looked at it. “You’re right and the book isn’t here. She walked out and looked along the shelves. “It isn’t on the shelf here. I do have another place. Vilduy, get down here and take over!”

A teenage boy appeared and said, “What do you want, Mardi?”

“The lieutenant is looking for a book and I want to look in back. The lieutenant is on the track of the dark ones.”

Vilduy brightened and said, “What do you do, Lieutenant?”

“For the most part, I am my captain’s gofer.”

“Gofer?”

“I gofer this and I gofer that. I also help keep the paperwork and watch the occasional bomb. Sometimes, I help take them apart.”

“Have you been on a ship?”

“Surprisingly, since I am in ordnance, I have been ashore. I was hoping for a seaborne commission or a commission in intelligence and I ended up in my current job. That doesn’t mean that I don’t do intelligence work, but so far, it’s tracking down bomb designs and looking into navy politics. We did go up to the Empire and some other places and I let the captain convince me to open something.”

Vilduy’s eyes brightened. “A vault.”

“Yes. I’m a Brownlow and he didn’t want the hassles of dealing with a treasure, so he had me tested at the mage academy, they passed me, took my oath and handed me a pendant. Then the captain had me open the vault.”

“So, you are a mage.”

“Not really, since I haven’t had the training. I can do a few things. The biggest is that I can open the old family vaults and they can get me in trouble.”

“What do you mean?”

“Dealing with antiquities. I would rather open vaults with tools and things, but it hasn’t worked out that way.”

Mardi came back out with a huge grin. “HA! I thought so. There were some copies almost buried with some other things. Vilduy, we can set them up later. For right now, I have two copies for you, lieutenant.”

“Why two?”

“One for you and one for your girl.”

“I don’t have a girl at present.”

“You don’t? Why not?”

“The girl I had in upper school did not think it appropriate that I should join the navy and during the academy, opportunities did not present themselves.”

“Buy it anyway and who knows what may happen.”

“Like what?”

“You could take me to lunch.”

“Would you like to go to lunch? I think that I owe you at least a lunch for making the effort to find the book for me.”

“That seems fair. Let me check these out, we can go to lunch and you can pick them up when you bring me back.”

When they returned, Tim picked up his books and left. Vilduy said, “Should you be dating a mage?”

“We are not exactly dating. We just went to lunch.”

“Did you make any more appointments?”

“I did get his number and promised to tell him when Elf Carran comes back. Now there are these books and we should do something special with them, so let’s get started.”

Susan looked at Swifty and said, “You know that my birthday is coming up soon.”

“I know. I suspect that you want a surprise.”

“A lot of girls have fun around their sixteenth birthday.”

“If we do that, we won’t be able to hide it here in town.”

“I wasn’t thinking about here in town. I have a cave all picked out.”

“Where?  It can’t be too far.”

“The summer house. You haven’t been there yet.”

“If we did have fun in a cave, we wouldn’t be able to hide long enough.”

“You already went to school as a dragon once. We could have fun with that.”

“That would make it obvious with your mother that we did something.”

“Mother knows that we are going to do something soon. My aunt was doing something at fourteen and it wasn’t in a nice way. School ends and you graduate just before my birthday anyway.”

‘That reminds me. I need to check on your present.”

“What is it?”

“A surprise. I’m not going to say.”

“Will I like it?”

“I think so.”

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