Episode 9: The Second Day (Intermission)

      “You’re late,” Sionis said, already appearing to be quite dirty as he stood at the edge of the crops looking to the Collector, Vestria. She had purchased some work garments, and the fabric was itchy, they wore far too loose on her small frame to be of any use, and the hat they had given her for long days in the sun was already folding from the humidity of this place.

      “I’m aware, that I’m late” she said, trying to mask her exhaustion. “I stayed up too late.”

      “No kidding,” Sionis said with a chuckle. “Come on, you can dig some rows.”

      “Sure.”

      “What do you want me to call you?” Sionis asked as he walked him to an empty area of the farm. “I can’t just call you the Collector all the time, but I didn’t want to be informal and start calling you Vestria if you didn’t care for it.”

      “I’m used to being called the Collector by now,” she said, honestly. “That’s who I am to so many people.”

      “So you want me to call you Collector? I can do that.”

      “No,” she said, growing slightly energetic. “I was the Collector by trade. I wanted to get noticed so that someone important might come along and find me. Now that I’m here, I suppose you can call me by my name. Vestria Wint.”

      Sionis nodded. “Good name. Alright. Vestria Wint.”

      “Just Vestria is fine,” she added.

      He chuckled. “Alright.”

      “Good. Now that we settled that. What will you have me digging?”

      “Right,” Sionis said, smiling warmly. “Okay, let’s do some farming!”


      It would be impossible for the Flamecaller to know this, but Vestria’s father was a farmer too. He was a big man, with arms as big as tree branches and the strength to cleave a log in half with a single swipe. When she was growing up, her dad had been the strongest man she ever met. Even now, as far as she had come and with all the wonderful and amazing mysteries she had witnessed, she still believed her father’s brute strength might overcome them all.

      Unlike her father, and her older sister, Vestria had a small frame and found that she could barely stand the direct summer heat of her old home. She had always felt so useless there on the farm with her family. Each of them excelled at something or another, but she was left collecting eggs and milking cows because the stronger tasks required someone that… was strong. As she got older, she set her eyes on traveling, but her father was never a fan. The farm, and all the things about it, became rather depressing in her mind, and that put a lot of negative energy on her dad. After all, he worked day and night on the farm, and she just wanted to leave it behind. Their relationship had been strained after that, and Vestria had put her mind to work in science and traveling, exploring, and becoming a leader in other areas. That’s how she had come to be the Collector. So, after all of it, she owed her father that much, at least.

      “You are not great at this,” Sionis Sepher’s voice ripped him from his silent reverie.

      “I know,” she grumbled in response. “Thanks for reminding me.”

      “Ouch. Sore subject?”

      “Let’s just say farming and I don’t get along.”

      Sionis nodded slowly. “You could have mentioned that before you made a deal to work on a farm in exchange for a story.”

      “I wasn’t quite thinking it through,” Vestria replied, wiping the beads of sweat from her forehead.

      “Alright, I think we can stop working the land for now. How about we get some lunch and I’ll let you take some notes. After that, I can send you to the market to pick up ingredients for a meal I want to make.”

      “So I’ll be an errand girl then?” she asked sarcastically.

      “Oh no,” Sionis replied. “I misunderstood. You want to work the farm then while I do shop?”

      Vestria looked at the remaining field and frowned. “Fine. I’ll shop for ingredients.”

      “Perfect. Come on then,” Sionis added. “Time is burning.”


      Inside the hut, Sionis went to work chopping some veggies and spinning up some conjured bread. Vestria quickly pulled out all of her notes and tapped her dictation machine to get it working.

      “So, you mentioned an Uncle,” she started as she rolled out her latest scroll. “I was looking over the family tree, right, and I didn’t see anyone named Maron on it, at least not on the older ones. Later on, like on this one, it shows up on there…”

      “You stayed up looking at this instead of preparing for work?” Sionis asked.

      “Not exactly. Well, yes.”

      “Do you want me to talk about my family tree or keep going with the story that I was telling you last night? The Sepher history is long and complex. I suppose if you have a few extra days we can look into it.”

      “No,” Vestria said, trying not to interrupt. “Please, start off right where you stopped last night.

      Sionis thought about this for a moment then nodded and took a big bite of bread. “Alright, so we talked about being a child, and how I met Lady Sonea. We got me all the way to Stormwind, right? Yeah, because you want to know about my Uncle. I’ll talk about him soon enough, but I think I need to talk about someone else first. She is probably one of the most important introductions in my life, you see, and I met her that day when I got to Stonehaven. She was one of the greatest allies, and simultaneously, the heaviest burdens I’ve ever dealt with in my life… let’s talk about Kaellax.”


TO BE CONTINUED…

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