Episode 8: Retirement

The Pandaren town of Halfhill.

          The Loremaster looked at Sionis for a long time.

          Finally, when it became clear the mage was done talking, he rolled his eyes.

          “What?” Sionis asked.

          “You aren’t done,” he said. “The wand. I purchased it off a vendor in Booty Bay. He told me it was a valuable relic used by Sionis the Fire Mage of Stormwind. How did he end up with the wand?”

          Sionis chuckled. “Right. Iliera held onto it after the confrontation with Evanor. She kept it for fourteen years, actually, and asked me the day we met what she should do with the remaining pieces. I told her to return them to the Baron in Booty Bay. I figured he would get a kick out of it. I don’t find it surprising that he then tried to give it a remarkable value when, in reality, it had little to offer.”

          “Okay fine,” the Loremaster said. “Seeing as how much time has passed since you and Iliera met, tell me the story about your seemingly long-lasting youth?”

          Sionis paused for a moment. “You haven’t pieced it together yourself, from all those notes you have there?”

          The Loremaster grumbled. “No, I have not.”

          The mage scoffed. “Well, the explanation is easy enough. During the Legion invasion all those years ago, my body was hidden away in the twisting nether by the warlock Kaellax. Our souls are eternal, you know this, but our physical bodies are the problem. In my case, my physical body was exposed to so much latent energy within the nether that I found myself to be quite… timeless.”

          “You’re immortal?”

          Sionis shrugged. “I don’t know. I know little of the circumstances, but I do know that despite the time that has passed living here in Pandaria, I find myself no more aged than I was before. I doubt it’s the food or hard labor that have added these years to my life.”

          The Loremaster looked shocked. “So you’re an immortal fire mage, powerful ally, and you’ve decided you’re going to spend eternity working on a farm out here in Pandaria?”

          Sionis shrugged once more. “I do not know what my future holds, no more than you do, I suspect. I know my place, at least right now, is here. Besides, you came here telling me you wanted the story of my wand, and now that story is done, as evidenced by the burned and broken remains you carry.”

          The Loremaster blinked a few times, then nodded. “Okay, right. Okay. So, I suppose I can’t quite say I’m done collecting your history then, can I?”

          “Hmm?” Sionis asked.

          “I mean, I suppose I’ll have to remain here in Pandaria, right? At least for now. You never know what might happen, and I can’t risk losing track of you again.”

          The mage understood, and with a little chuckle said, “It’s your call, Loremaster.”

          “Right. About that too. Since I won’t be keeping any lore for the time being… I suppose it wouldn’t hurt if you wanted to call me Aier. I mean, that’s my name, after all.”

          “Of course,” Sionis replied. “I suppose then, if you aren’t keeping any lore, you will likely need yourself a job, yeah?”

          Aier nodded.

          “Good,” Sionis said, smiling. “I need help around here. You can start in the morning, but I’ll pay you from now on.”

          That night, the Loremaster wrote his last entry in the logs of Sionis Sepher.

          He pulled all of the scrolls that he had written from the last several years and quickly enchanted them so that they could be transcribed in the Loremaster Halls.

          Likewise, he scribbled a letter of resignation and told the Loremasters that he had found the story of a lifetime here with Sionis, and it was a story that was not yet finished being told. He knew he might have to wait his whole lifetime, or maybe he would not live long enough to see it at all, but the story of Sionis Sepher was too powerful to simply walk away now.

          After all, Iliera was still out there. He had seen her.

          Sionis was still here, farming, waiting for the right time when he might be needed.

          Aier closed his backpack while the magical enchantments did their work.

          Most importantly, he had grown quite fond of Halfhill and Sionis Sepher. The mage was like a grumpy grandfather, despite his youthful looks. The other Pandaren were kind and they loved telling stories as much as he loved listening to them.

          He simply didn’t want to leave. So, he decided he wouldn’t.

          He would remain here, the steward of Sionis Sepher’s story, until either his death or the day that he could honestly say the tale had ended.

          In the meantime, he would eat, drink, and find joy in the life he had found here.

          He understood what Sionis had. He understood it all now.

          This place was his home.

          He glanced down at the broken pieces of the wand and smiled. They had brought him here, just like they had brought Sionis here.

          A magical wand, indeed.

The End.

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