"Ye must promise, me girl.
Get ye to this land I telled ye of and make
a new life. Nae give in to ye kin.
Promise!" The raspy words
echo through me dreams each night. Me own
mother's words, spoken in her best common.
"I telled ye all I learnt, and try I
did to protect ye as long as possible, but the
time has come. The place I send ye to be
harsh indeed and ye be havin ta train hard.
But stayin here be even harder."
A tear ran down her cheek as she begged fer
me word. With me own heart breakin, promise
her I did, a promise that can nae be broken.
It was shortly after that promise was made
that I arrived in Elanthia, in search of some way
to make me mother proud... some way to make up
for what me kin had done.
Jadewater mansion was where me
feet first touched Elanthian soil. I say
that becasue me heart were so heavy with worry
fer me mother that the days it took to travel to
this place became but a blurr in me mind. I awoke
one mornin from yet another fitful sleep and took
in me surroundings. Jadewater... even the
name of it spills regally off me tongue. It
was like wakin into a dream. So much space inside
one building seemed impossible. Grand
stairs flowed into magnificent halls which
spilled into beautifully decorated and spacious
rooms. The windows were quite a picture of
thier own. Peoples of all kinds rushed back
and forth with purpose in each stride, while
still more wandered about as aimlessly as meself.
At almost every turn there were tables
piled high with treats so amazing, I could
nae help but wonder what feast they be preparin
Outside on the grounds the
cobbled path sparkled as it led me little feet
around to the gardens. At the gazeebo
another table held even more treats... including
tarts! Me heart leapt at the sight. I
had feared that me lips had tasted thier last
tart when me home was behind me. Even more
delightful was the tall robed monk who telled me
to help meself to the treats! This was nae
a harsh land at all as me mother had telled me.
It be heaven!
Me belly were filled with tarts,
jellybeans, ale and more, when the sight of the
walls around these wonderfilled grounds made me
wonder if this be me last chance for such
comforts afore venturing past the massive gate.
"Those walls must be there for a
purpose," I telled meself. Mayhaps to
keep the true harshness of this land at a
distance. Havin nae a copper to me name and
nae any trainin fer anything ta get some, me sack
was also quickly filled with tarts, jellybeans,
ale and more.
I wandered around the grounds as
long as I dared, nae in a hurry to rush out and
find that harshness me mother speaked of.
In me wanderins I chanced across a cresture
unlike any I had met afore. A cat-like
person who walked on two feet and talked in the
common tongue. Not as good as me, mind ye,
but common it be. After a moment or two I
realized she be new to Elanthia as well, and just
as lost as meself. She were just discoverin
the talents of her tail. After a giggle I
stopped and wondered, and looked very carefully
to see if this was something that would happen to
all peoples entering this land. I breathed
a sigh of relief when nae any sign of a tail did
I find on meself.
Tail-less and intact, I did
finally venture into the streets. Shadows
loomed large around buildings, shops, and halls.
I had never seen so many buildings so close
together. It was almost comforting.
Hidin be one thing me mother and father
aggreed on for me ta learn. It also be one
more thing I nae be good at, except when me
mother's skirts be me hidin place. But,
this crowded place offered so many choices!
As I walked I heared folk speak
of many strange things. After a while I
understood that some of them had been talkin of
the trade they be learnin. They called it
guilds. There were a guild fer Empaths, one
fer Paladins, and another fer Clerics. I
was sure there be more, but I could nae figure
those out yet. This guild thing intrigued
me and I wanted to learn more. I looked up
at the sign on the corner and read, Truffenyi
Way. "Hmmm," I thought,
"Truffenyi sounds almost like
Taffleberry." I took it as a sign and
proceeded up the path to a gate.
The robed monk standing guard
outside the gate greeted me with a smile.
It made me feel warm all over.
Feeling at ease with him, I proceeded to
ask questions about the guilds. He knew
only of the Cleric's guild. He telled me
that there be one inside who could teach me all I
desired to learn, and pointed to the building
behind the gate. Looking up at the building
I was suddenly filled with a fit of nerves.
But, me promise to me mother were somethng
that must be kept. Bravely I stepped
through the gate and waited. Nothing
happened. I nae be sure what I expected,
but I was relieved when it nae happened.
The sanctuary of the Cleric's
guild was a cool and quiet place. A few
monks sat on benches around the room and studied
from books, or whispered to one another. I
noticed a large chest sitting against a wall, the
words charity chest on a scroll attached to it's
side. Curiosity lead me to take a peek
inside. There were a few items of clothing
and several maps, just like the one I had been
given at Jadewater Mansion. Nervously I
looked about the place. A large open arch
lead to a room filled with sunshine. Taking a
peek through that arch I saw more benches, and
two very large vats. Did the clerics use
these for water? ...or something more
hidious? A shiver ran up my spine as I
recalled horrible tales that had been telled to
me as a young one ...tales of evil dragon
worshipers who boiled bad children and ate them
Turning back to the sanctuary, I
noticed another door. Creeping up to it as
quietly as possible, I tried to peeked inside.
"Ahem," coughed a stern voice from
behind me. "This is the study of the
guild leader. Be gone if ye have no
business with him." I almost ran away right
then. But then I remembered, I did have
business with the guild leader. My voice
shaking and cracking, I explained to the monk
that I wished to learn of the guild. With a
knowing smile and a nod he let me pass into the
study. Behind a great wooden desk sat a human
man. His eyes were soft and somehow
comforting. Seeing no sign of dragons
anywhere I relaxed as Esuin greeted me with
a smile and an outstretched hand.
Esuin telled me a great deal that
day and answered many questions. His
patience was welcome as I asked some of the
questions more than once. He explained
about the gods and telled me how I could learn
more. I was fascinated. The more he
talked, the more I knew that this be the place I
was meant to be. He explained that the life
of a Cleric be a difficult one, but well worth it
and the rewards great for those who persevered.
This life also fell into line with a
promise that needed to be kept. Leading this life
would honor me mother and the sacrifices she had
made fer her only daughter.