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Exile... so proclaimed the Elders of Tesrant at Kassia ya Siaâ€™s Judgment hour. Little do they realize they have given Kassia her longed for freedom.
Rewe de Arquette is on Queenâ€™s Quest to find her missing heir. The babe had been sent into hiding to protect her from the Dark One. Only the Barrier Stone and the aging Queen stands against the Dark Oneâ€™s evil.
Storm clouds began to darken the sky hours later as she continued to move along the dry wash. Any other time she would have welcomed the rain to clean away the grime of travel. However, judging by the white bands marking high water on the rocky walls of this narrow passage, she would be foolish to be caught on this trail during the approaching storm. She had noticed so much that was different from Tesrant in the short while she had been gone, that she guessed the approaching storm with its black roiling clouds probably would not be the gentle showers of Tesrant.
Kassia did not wish to wash down into the land below as storm debris. Taking the time to search both sides of the passage, she found a narrow ledge high up and on the right. Perhaps somewhere along the ledge there would be better chance of shelter. Getting up the cracked rock face would be hard in the quickly diminishing light, but the thought of the ledge providing, if not a softer spot, but definitely a safer resting place, urged her on.
Her only other choice was to perch on top one of the boulders on the left side of the passage or try the tunnel of unknown length in front of her. If that tunnel was blocked as the one behind her had been, it could easily become a death trap for the unwary.
Between her sweat and the pounding rain as she climbed the crumbling wall, Kassia was drenched by the time she pulled herself up on the ledge. Pausing only long enough to catch her breath, she started moving cautiously along the wet rock. The ledge widened ahead and she hoped she could find a spot to spend the night safely above the watermarks on the stones, curled under her shelter of skins if nothing else could be found further along the ledge.
As she rounded the outcropping, Kassia froze as she caught the flickering reflections of what appeared to be a fire on the rocks just ahead. She quietly slipped her pack off her back and dropped it behind her on the ledge. With lance in hand, she moved quietly forward.
A small fire burned, well back from the mouth of the small cave protected from the storm by a rock overhang. A large travel pack rested against the huge rock slab that formed the back of the cave. She searched the flickering shadows cautiously as she moved into the cave out of the rain.
No one was within the cave, but it was obvious someone planned to return, and soon. Kassia went back out into the rain to fetch her pack. When she came back, she placed it beside the other travel pack, wiping the water from her face with her hands. She decided that whomever had found this cave could share its dryness with her for the night. She was too weary to think of finding other shelter and it was too wet to continue.
Caution dictated that Kassia check the approach from the other direction before she settled down to wait for the other occupant of the cave. She walked over to where the narrow path disappeared along the stone face and into the stormy night. Loose gravel rolled under Kassiaâ€™s foot, sputtering down the cliff as she caught her balance against the stone face.
"Truce Service!" came the pain fill cry out of the darkness. "Trapped!"
"What ifâ€ has been my mantra for as long as I can remember. In truth, I only write down the adventure my imagination has created for me. A tidbit of truth, an idea, plus a "what ifâ€ and Iâ€™m off.
I live in Sandy, Utah with my husband of thirty-seven years.
Book Publisher: Wings e Press
No. of Pages: 134
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