Sitting in front of the fireplace, Sipping Coffee took another drink of coffee. First imported in winter, coffee became his favorite drink. So much so that his friends had begun to call him Sipping Coffee in jest. Gazing into the fire, Sipping Coffee pondered the news of Evidias' kidnapping.
The day had begun much as usual. He had been filling trade orders when the town criers announced A meeting had been called by Dahlia. Quickly finishing the last order, he hurried to the hall. Frowning, Dahlia had entered the hall glancing down at her note in worry.
"Have any of you seen Evidias or have had word of her?" Dahlia asked hopefully. "The King informed me that she has not delivered her report."
"I've not seen her since our encounter with the strange beetles. During the battle she wandered off following a magic trail." Sipping Coffee replied.
"I've checked her home in Jehlom but she hasn't been seen there." Lady Thalia added.
Worried, the spies exchanged looks. "What word from the Fiery Lady? Has she seen her? Tamais asked.
"No, she has been searching for her." Dahlia shook her head, "Even more troubling the Fiery Lady has seen a Djinn in Felucca."
"A Djinn!" exclaimed Sipping. "The one Merrick had the agreement with?
"Yes," Dahlia affirmed. "Strangely enough the Fiery Lady told me that Evidias was the last to speak to it.
Sipping Coffee shook his head, "Isn't it odd that after Evidias spoke to it, she disappeared. Could it be involved?"
Dahlia thought for a moment, "I don't think it is. The Fiery Lady reported that it couldn't be bothered with our little problems. She gave a small laugh. "Minax causing chaos a small problem indeed."
"Could the Havadri be involved?" questioned Sipping.
"I don't think so," Dahlia frowned. "We still don't know why the beetles appeared or who they are working for."
"What do you need us to do?" Sipping Coffee asked. "We are ever at your service."
Dahlia smiled, "Your service is welcome in these times. Since my reports say that Evidias felt the pillars' magic was like the Welds, I contacted Marouk ."
"Will he and the Weld help? asked Lady Thalia.
Dahlia shook her head. "Marouk not only refused to help, he has closed the camp."
The room grew quiet in shock. Marouk refusing to help Evidias. Why?
"However, Time Without Dreams has sent word that he will help." Dahlia added.
"And the Fiery Lady? What news does she have of Evidias?" Sipping Coffee asked.
Dahlia referred to her notes. "She is trying to find the magic trail for us with no luck." Dahlia wrinkled her brow, "She seems to be worried which is troubling in itself.
Angerly Lady Thalia muttered to herself, "If the Fiery Lady caused Evidias to go missing, she better be worried."
Hearing Lady Thalia, Dahlia turned to her. "I trust you to keep an eye on her for me, Lady Thalia. For now though we need her help."
"When last we meet, the Fiery Lady felt another presence in the tunnel. Have she learned more? Sipping Coffee asked.
Dahlia shook her head. "All she knows is it is intelligent and feels feral. It has also been reported that the rifts we found are behaving strangely again." She put the papers away. "No matter I'm concerned more with Minax's plan.
Sipping Coffee noticed Dahlia looking towards the door. Yet she seemed unwilling to leave. "Is there more we need to know? You seem hesitant to leave .
Dahlia sighed. "I need to report Evidias disapperance to the King. I dread that meeting."
He is waiting at the west of the Oaks shrine. Talk to him and see if he has found anything in his search." Sighing, Dahlia started for the door. "Now for the King."
Sipping Coffee and the Royal Spies hurried to Ilshenar. Arriving at the they found Time Without Dreams. Staring at something they couldn't see, he didn't notice their arrival
Friend of the Weld, Bowing, Lady Thalia greeted the Weld. "Hail, Time Without Dreams have you word of Evidias?"
Time Without Dreams looked around at the gathering and shook his head. "I can not find what you seek. There is nothing to be done."
Carefully Sipping Coffee approached Time Without Dreams, bowing deeply before speaking. "Can you sense her?"
Time Without Dreams focused on something the Royal spies couldn't see.
"This magic is from the roots of the tree." Puzzled he looked at the gathering "Why is it here?"
"Wise one, we do not know. Evidias said the same before she disappeared." Sipping Coffee replied. "We had hope you knew the answer."
Time Without dreams shook his head, "You understand but are blinded.
"Can you help us to see?" Lady Thalia asked. "Do you mean the roots of the Weld tree?"
Time Without Dreams growled. "Who's tree? our tree, their tree. It is that tree...it was a tree before our life and after we are gone. It exists. Time Without Dreams stopped and looked at the gathering. "Do you understand?
People exchanged puzzled looks. "A family tree?" some one asked.
Time Without Dreams seemed to not hear the question.
Growling again, Time Without Dreams continued. "This is the magic that twists and corrupts your shrines. It burns the bonds made long ago." Time Without Dreams began to cough. "We must leave, the air is foul."
Following Time Without Dreams through the opened gate, Sipping Coffee found that they were at the entrance to Destard. He and the Royal spies ran after to Time Without Dreams, catching up to him at the tunnel entrance."
Time Without Dreams studied the entrance. He tilted his head one way then the other. "Something waits. It's eyes cold but inside it burns.
Time Without Dreams walked around the tunnel. Touching it he moved back in surprise. "You have been deceived. They are not from there...opened here...this side. Time without Dreams bared his teeth, "It comes!"
The Irregisa ran from the tunnel followed closely by freezing magical influxes. Caught off guard, the Royal spies quickly regrouped and attacked.
Time Without Dreams waited until the Royal Spies were winning the battle. Then flew toward the tunnels. "I have to explore the tunnels. I must see what it is." Before anyone could stop him, he was gone. As if scared out of the tunnel, the beetle, Idos scurried out. Looking around it began clicking at the gathering. Then taking a swipe at Sippin Coffee, it fled into another tunnel entrance.
Returning, Time Without Dreams sniffed the air. "What creature was here? Growling he sniffed the air again.
Everyone began to speak at once. "It was a strange white beetle." "It was named Idos" "It tried to hit Sippin." "It ran away though that tunnel entrance when you came."
Tilting his head, Time Without Dreams listened intently. "It is trying to repair the tunnels. You must stop it. Return to the Britain Hall." he opened a gate. "I must return to my search of the tunnels. Hurry!"
Sippin Coffee watched as Time Without Dreams disappeared back into the tunnels. Then he followed the others through the gate. To his surprise, Idos was on the other side.
Tamers tried to moved their dragons between Idos and the pillars. "Stop." Lady Thalia commanded. "We are here to prevent you from opening the tunnel.
Squinting in the light, Idos turned back to the pillar to continue its work. Turning to claw at people when they moved to close. Idos was becoming frantic unable to catch and use the pillars magic. Panicking at last it attacked. "Fools, you can't understand my power."
The street by the hall slowly filled with fire. Royal Spies, pets, and Britain's healers refusing to let Idos escape no matter how many deaths. Screeching and clawing, fought its way back to the tunnel. Damaged by the battle, Idos shed its shell and ran into a tunnel.
"Well have you found her?" A voice demanded. Turning from examining the tunnel, Sippin Coffee found the Fiery Lady.
"No, we haven't." Lady Thalia replied. "Have you?"
The Fiery Lady shook her head...burning the ground with her staff. "You are so slow. Come I sense that she went this way.
Without looking to see if we were following she broken into a run. Stopping only to touch the stones that lead her.
Soon we can to the pass leading to Wind. The conduit with its tunnel still standing. Approaching it, we found it surrounded by Frozen Droplets of fire. Looking around Sippin Coffee called the rest over. There on the ground was Evidias's robe ...frozen.
The Fiery Lady touched it then looked at the stones. "Yes she passed through here. I feel a magic passing through the tunnel to somewhere. Reaching out to touch the stone, She jumped back. "I can sense something familiar. No! I've been deceived!"
Not expecting the reaction, Sippin Coffee asked, "Who has deceived you?"
"The Wisp." the Fiery lady replied angrily. "That stupid, ugly wisp, Adriad the cold... it lied."
"It deceived me and took her...the little blue lady." she shouted.
Shocked, The Royal Spies grew silent. At last Lady Thalia asked the question on everyone's mind. "How do we get her back."
"How should I know! I knew not to trust it...that stupid ancient wisp. Mumbling, the air around her heated up. "I knew it was a liar."
Part 1: To be continued
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Evidias Kidnapped Pt.1
The Royal Spies were shocked when Dahlia told them that Evidias was missing. Joining the Weld, Time Without Dreams their search took them back...