Saturday, December 26, 2015

The King's Challenge #144 and #145

TKC 144 and 145

Night has fallen, and we sit around the table in the cottage, a tight fit. Stomachs are full and everyone is relaxed.

During the remaining hours of daylight many conversations took place, some in whispers, others casual, most in the open to feel each other out, to determine who stood where. I think all of us now begin to regard each other with some suspicion. Who among us is a Glonu? Who is Ilfin? Who is true born to this world and is therefore a Massinian? If we claim those differences, are we enemies?

Surely our common cause - fleeing the potential of annihilation from space - united us and race or creed no longer features?

This may be a fool’s hope.

Lyra has explained the magnetic slide she created - although she claims she did not create it, she simply launched something already in place - and that it bounced the asteroid into further space. Massin, as world, is safe from that threat.

We are not safe from this new suspicion. I am afraid it may lead us to war.

To that end, Lyra murmurs, “However we regard our genesis, given what Horin has revealed, there is still the issue of leaving Arc. We cannot stay here. Whether I am Ilfin or Glonu does not matter, for staying means I am a slave to this resident power. I refuse to accept that.”

“Likewise,” Kay stated. He levers to his feet. “I know some of you think I must be Glonu because I am from the west, but I say it doesn’t matter. I will not be enslaved within a ring of mountains.”

Horin stares at him. “You are not Glonu.”

Kay glares at him. “And how can you tell?”

“You have the heart of a revolutionary, friend, and no Glonu has ever risen against their own kind.”

“Maybe that’s true,” I say, “but time has moved on and many have now lived and learned on a world that has allowed freedoms perhaps unknown elsewhere. Kay could be a traveller from somewhere else entirely, as we all may be, for we have integrated. You said yourself it is now hard to tell us apart, Horin.”

Horin inclines his head. “Agreed, but there is another factor.”

Lyra sighs. “You can see our genesis?” I can tell, by her tone, she hopes it will not be that.

“No, I do not see where we come from, but I am able to feel the presence of light.” Horin opens his hand upon the table to reveal the green orb. “This light pulls at other glows. If a Glonu is nearby, it vibrates as it attempts to remove that one’s mask.”

I lean in. “Horin, the glow could be someone carrying a torch.”

He smiles at me. “Not that kind of light, Damin. It’s not of the tangible kind.”

“Light is never tangible,” I growl.

“And there you prove yourself an Ilfin beyond all doubt,” Horin whispers.

This is a morass of dangers. Discuss this too much, and we will be at each other’s throats, all of us. I change the subject. “According to you and Hanna,” and I focus on Lyra, “it will be easier to escape if we are on or near the rim.”

Lyra nods immediately, and I sense her profound relief. She shoots me a look filled with gratitude. “True, yes, therefore, come morning, we need to hasten back to the others.”

Kay slaps at his thighs. “Excellent. I want out of here as soon as possible.”

Horin glances at Lyra, who says, “It will be a bit harder than simply walking out. The reason for the place being known as Arc is now in place again.”

“Meaning the shield from ancient times is enabled?” Joseph asks quietly.


“Exactly,” Lyra murmurs.


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