Spoiler Alert: Do not read this unless you have finished reading the first book!
Excerpt from the upcoming-
Roquiel and the Battle for Kitharion:
“Is Zemo still coming over to see you?” asked Ava from atop Virbaya. “No, the remedies that my sister gave me have been working well for the pain so he didn’t find it necessary to keep going to the house,” Roquiel replied, riding alongside her on Kiini. “You got back on your feet remarkably fast. I think that’s due in part to the fact that Joules ran and got Zemo as fast as she did. Zemo told me he thought you were dead when he got to you,” Ava said.
“I was fortunate that Joules was there but I think she still feels bad about it. She has been avoiding me ever since it happened,” said Roquiel sadly. “Give her some time. It must have been traumatic to witness something like that. At least Daver’s not around right now to cause more trouble. Do you know when he’s coming back?” Ava asked.
“Sabio told me he’ll stay at the rehabilitation home in Zuri until they think he has shown real change and growth,” Roquiel replied. “In that case, he will probably never come back,” Ava said, smirking. “We’ll see,” said Roquiel with his head down and a forced smile.
“Changing subjects, do you think you will start teaching at the school soon?” asked Ava. “Elder Sabio thinks I’m ready,” Roquiel answered. “Although I have been enjoying my lessons with him. I’ll be sad when they end,” he added. “What have you been doing?” Ava asked. “He has helped me to control the energy that comes out of my palms and we’ve developed healing and self-defense techniques with it. I even have tried it on myself a bit,” he replied. “That helps explain your quick recovery too. Wow, we really need to get everyone using these techniques,” said Ava. After a few moments she added, “But if Sabio is teaching you all of these things about energy, why hasn’t this information been given in school before?” “He tells me it’s because he only has a basic knowledge of the energy centers and that he has now taught me everything he knows. And up until now, the little that the elders know has been considered sacred knowledge- knowledge that you had to earn the right to be taught. But since my experience with the phoenix, more and more things have been occurring to me and we are realizing that the wisdom that the elves currently possess is only the beginning and that there is a lot more to learn. So now, instead of keeping this knowledge only for those deemed worthy, he wants me to teach it to everyone so that we may advance much more rapidly in this area,” Roquiel answered.
“I’d like to learn about it too,” said Ava.
“We will be doing lessons in the evenings for any interested adults,” Roquiel told her. “I wonder if Deary will let me skip the night watch to attend?” Ava wondered aloud. “I’m sure she will. Elder Sabio said that the classes will be taking precedence over duties for the time being,” Roquiel replied. “I also wanted to ask you if you wouldn’t mind helping me practice teaching the adults sometime before the first class?” Roquiel asked sheepishly. “Of course! Anything for our hero,” said Ava, beaming. Roquiel’s cheeks went from pink to deep red. He still didn’t like the word hero or being treated like one.
“By the way, how much tea for your allergies do you have left? I’ll be sad when it runs out and our horse rides come to an end,” Ava said solemnly. “Sabio says that he has been in contact with Nintu and she has given him the recipe. He then gave it to my sister whose going to keep making it,” Roquiel replied happily. “Praise Medeina!” Ava said, clapping.
The two rode in peace for a while longer until Ava broke the silence. “Should we head back now? People will start wondering if we are up to no good,” she said with a grin. Roquiel shook his head and smiled, then gave the command for Kiini to turn back around toward town.
As they approached Graybell forest, Ava noticed a figure in the distance. “I wonder who would be out here by themselves?” she wondered aloud. “Let’s go see who it is,” said Roquiel and the two rode over to investigate.
“Kelarion, what brings you out here? And what’s in the sack?” asked Ava when they realized who they had seen. “I was visiting Roc,” she answered. “He’s getting old and it’s becoming harder and harder for him to catch enough food on his own. I found some dead mice in the field this morning, so I brought them to him,” she added.
“I’ll bet he liked that,” said Ava. “Yes, but I will need to bring him more. As you know, he is a very large bird. I’m going to see what else I can find for him, hopefully without having to kill anything myself,” Kelarion replied. “Maybe he’s not eating enough because he’s in a bad mood,” Ava suggested. “Has anyone called for Mina?” she asked. “No,” answered Kelarion. “She is refusing to come see him.” “Are they still not getting along? If they don’t reconcile soon, their species will go extinct,” said Roquiel concerned.
“I’m well aware of that but we can’t force them into anything. There has been talk of using Arch technology to reproduce them but I think it will come to that only as a last resort,” Kelarion replied. “I don’t know. If it will save the species, what is the harm?” asked Ava. “The elders say that if possible, these things need to happen naturally,” answered Kelarion.
“By the way, I haven’t had the chance to talk to you privately since you returned, but now that I have you here, I want to ask you about a rumor that I’ve heard,” Kelarion added in a hushed tone. “Of course, go ahead,” said Roquiel. “I heard that one of you got poked by the gadurs outside the crystal caves. What happened? Which one of you did it happen to?” she asked, eyebrows raised.
Ava dismounted her horse, Roquiel did the same and they both walked over to where Kelarion was standing. “The rumors are true about the gadurs. But it is also true that we walked for some time with another traveler on our way to the Crystal Caves. His name was Gelon, we met him in Marcin. He said that he was going to visit family in Cape Haven. When we got to the caves, he asked if he could accompany us inside and Roquiel said that he could. The three of us approached straight out from the entrance but he decided to go and walk along the outside of the cave wall. He told us later that he had brushed up against some gadurs and they had scratched his hand,” Ava explained.
“Well, was he all right? What happened to him?” Kelarion asked, mouth agape. “He was fine in the end. He said he felt dizzy at first, so he sat down inside the caves and waited for us while we went and looked for the Life Stone. But it didn’t take long for him to start feeling better. By the time we returned with the stone, he was back on his feet and was able to walk out of the caves under his own power,” Roquiel said.
Kelarion had a hand up to her mouth and her brow was furrowed. “Is something wrong?” Roquiel asked her. “It’s very odd that this man recovered so quickly from the gadur poison. I’ve never heard of the effects wearing off in less than a day,” she replied. Ava gasped and defensively said, “I felt like there was something odd about him but Roquiel let him travel with us.”
“It’s hard to know what’s going on inside someone’s head and heart, especially when they don’t want you to know the truth,” replied Kelarion. “If I were you, I would investigate and see if you can find out more about him,” she added.
“I think you’re right,” replied Ava. “Let me know what you find out,” said Kelarion. “Are you heading back to town? You can ride back with me if you are,” Roquiel asked. “As a matter of fact I am and I would love to go with you. It is quite a long way to walk,” Kelarion replied.
Ava mounted Virbaya and Roquiel mounted Kiini. He then reached down to take Kelarion’s sack. She thanked him and got up onto Kiini behind him. Roquiel turned around passed her bag back to her. She held onto the bag with one hand and wrapped the other around Roquiel to steady herself. They gave the command for their horses to trot then they were on their way back to the Seren stables.