Lilith's Journal: Chapter 1, Entry 11

Glitter City, The Gypsy Camp

We entered the Sister City of Newport by dusk the second night. The city was named Tentia, and it was aglow with gilding and gold. I had never even heard of Tentia before stepping onto the hardwood docks, and wondered if perhaps THIS was the city Tyler meant to tell stories about, but from the look of confusion about him, he never even knew of its existence.

Rothus seemed very uncomfortable with all the light reflecting off the smooth walls of a city made of glass, Tyler seemed dumbfounded by the stories he could tell, Evander seemed impressed, and Travis less-so. I think it was Aerynthia’s reactions though, that I remembered the most. She wasn’t just nervous, she was afraid. From the glassy look in her eyes that reflected the cities foundation, I saw bad memories well to the surface of her usually serene face. This was not far from where her parents burned to death in the fire, and the haunting memories seemed to really affect her in a bad way. Roran must have seen it too, because we hardly had a look at Tentia before it was at our horse’s flanks.

The rest of our travels were fairly quiet. At one point and time the conversation about what we were good at came out. I think it was a bad play on a joke Travis told Rothus about being useless. Rothus expounded on his skills in front of Mister Roran, and Roran made it a point to inform Travis that no one was useless. He complimented Rothus on his skills at bypassing barriers, and Evander’s abilities to wield as sword. He told Aeryn she had in her the workings of a devout priestess of the holy church. He told Tyler that he would one day be a great chronicler like his father, and that Travis knew nature and tracking like no other. When his eyes fell to me, I noticed the uncomfortable look he gave me.

“And you Lilith…” he paused. “You will be great too.”

“Great in what way?” I asked enthusiastically.

“Great… at the things you do Lilith. Magic I guess, witchy things.”

I sighed heavily. Magic he guesses? I grumbled to myself. Witchy things? All that came from my lips was a noncommittal “Okay…”

Not even noticing the pause in our conversation, Rothus asked Mister Roran what he was good at.

“I am a Magus, as was Mister Dalton,” he replied.

Rothus seemed confused, so Roran expounded.

“I am a warrior that can use magic through my sword,” he declared. “Part warrior, part magic user, we combine the best skills of both worlds.”

Most everyone raised their eyebrows. I just glared.

About 10 days we broke into a clearing in the woods. We heard the soft rhythm of music as we happened upon a gypsy camp. The camp was fresh, I guessed no more than two or three days old. The grass was still green underneath the wagons, and the wagon wheels not yet overgrown. Roran greeted someone by name and several nomads approached us.

“We are here,” Roran simply acknowledged as he stepped away from us. “Make yourselves comfortable.”

I admit the camps colorful rugs, and hearty fire, as well as the dancing minstrels and flashing of flesh was quite a contradictory backdrop to our bedraggled group of tattered shirts, and grimy faces. There was awe to the place--a feeling of mystery. I was taken aback. How did Roran know the camp would be here when I highly doubted that even the gypsy’s knew they would be here?

Eventually we learned that the gypsies were skilled teachers, and that it was with them that we were to learn the arts of our trade. We would be spending a lot of time with them for the next few years.

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