The fourth part of the 1st chapter.
Bléumond walked silently in the already dark woods, although scattered rays from the setting sun touched the damp earth here and there,enough light for Bléumond to follow the man who appeared recently.The man was wearing a robe,a hood covering his face from being seen even when the canopy broke and they were in the open.Bléumond had been following aimlessly before that,her thoughts occupied,until she realized they had reached the river.
"Where are we going?" she asked.
"To your home," he answered as they walked along the banks.The word home lifted her spirit although he said in a rather indifferent voice.Flat.And it sounds faraway,the way sounds echo in the woods.Hearing his voice reminded Bléumond being back in the wood,reminding her of the handicraft man,or Instur as she called her.She finally asked the hooded man.
"Is the man dead?"
"No.I have no need for that," he replied plainly.Other people would stop when he used the word 'no need',but Bléumond obliviously didn't.
"But he said that we were poisoned,the way cubs are taken from their mother.And he also said that she is normally killed.I wonder if he was only lying to me.Wasn't he?" Bléumond asked rather to herself but she turned towards the man nevertheless.For once since they walked,the man turned to her.Her heart skipped a bit.
It was just a glimpse.His face was shiny and skin taut over them,his hard skull as if protruding from within.It was as if they were made of wood.Suddenly however his face smooth out and left Bléumond wondering whether her eyes was tricked in the dim lighting.She then looked at his eyes and notice they were faraway,as if pondering a decision.
Bléumond heart stopped once more when she remembered her question and realized that Instur's life was in danger,as her question triggered the hooded man to reasses his own action.
After a pause he finally said,"The horse is over there."
Together they rode with her in the front saddle,towards her house,leaving the forest behind.Bléumond was scared to look back,though she managed to steal a peep from under the arms of the hooded man holding the reins.She then exhaled quietly,relieved that nothing happened to the handicraft man.
Bléumond was tired by the time they reached her home and it took a while before she noticed the house was different.
"What happen?Where is the light?" Bléumond jumped off the horse and went inside."Why isn't Wok putting up the lights?" She was searching for the house servants when she a stranger blocked the corridor.She looked up and saw the man had a menacing face and wore a grin with a blotch of birth-marks on the right of his face.He spoke and it instantly reminded her of the bull she saw with a patch of red skin on its back.
"So this is the young girl,"he said."You did manage to bring him,eh?"
The last words were directed to the hooded man,who ignored them.Instead he said,"Keep her in this room.I'll be waiting in the next room until the seal is finished."
The man with the blotch on his face followed the orders a bit reluctantly,his dislike for the hooded man clearly shown as he muttered words under his breath.He was about to hold Bléumond when she noticed that his father's study room was open and to her surprise her cousin,Lenna was sitting in there,scared.
"Lenna!You came!" she shouted to Lenna,though she didn't seem to hear.Before the blotch-faced man could react,Bléumond was already entering her father's study.She stepped into the room when instead of her cousin,she saw the back of the hooded man and the blotched faced man coming towards her.She looked to her left and saw her right leg,which cause her to let out a gasp.The hooded man turn and before Bléumond could figure out what was happening,he caught her by the shoulders and pulled her out from the room,holding her tightly and preventing her from going back.
He spoke angrily to the other,"Look after her,now."
He then turned away into the opposite room.
Bléumond felt her hand pulled by the blotch-faced man,who was still muttering under his breath.He dragged her to the living room,from which Blèumond could see Lenna sitting alone scared.In the living room she discovered two more strangers.
"What are you mumbling Links?" asked the first.
"The monster.Thinks he can order us around,eh.Just because he's a magician.Give me some wine,Port," said Links to the second stranger.
"You shouldn't drink in front of the lady,Links.It's bad manners," the first stranger chipped in.
"You and your manners.You thinking yourself some kind of noble,eh Filip?" Links replied.
"Maybe he thinking he's some kind of magician.You know,like the monster next door," jest Port,followed by Links' laughter.
"Is he really a magician?" Bléumond asked,cutting the laughter.
"Well the lady is asking herself," said Port."You know,he's not really a magician,he's a monster.Isn't that the right manner to say it,Filip."
"I don't know.Sometimes he seems good enough.Better than Lord Farquar most of the time"
Suddenly Links slapped Filip,leaving him speechless."You stupid.Lord Farquar is our master," said Links,followed by a few seconds of silence.He then took a sip of the wine and said in a better mood,"Besides,the monster only behaved because he has his intentions."
All this while Bléumond watched as her three guards talked about the hooded man and their master,a man named Lord Farquar.Occasionally she would asked a few questions and due to the liquor,the men answered them uninhibitedly.Through them,Bleumond also discovered the hooded man was a magician,and so was Lord Farquar.Morlai,for that was the name of the hooded man though they called him monster, was a man the guards hated much mainly because for his attitude,but also for his weird ways of 'magic'.Links was describing how Morlai set up the walls surrounding the study room,one that interested Bléumond so much that she forgot Lenna was actually kept caged in there,when suddenly the living room door opened.
The manner the guards changed,suggesting the incomer was important, in which he then voiced his authority.He was Lord Faquar.
"Links,grab her.You two stand up and ready."
Pulled to her feet,Bléumond saw Lord Faquar held out his hand and on his finger glittered a ring.The ring sparkled as she looked,creating an expanding blue wave that came closer to her eyes,before they passed through her eyes and vanish beyond her body.
Then there was a thud.The five people turn towards the sound,where a body was lying convulsing on the floor.There was only 2 lamps in the room and by the meek lights they provided,Bléumond saw that the body had scaly and glistening skin.Port and Filip quickly grasped the body upon Lord Faquar's command.They pulled him upright and under the light Bléumond gave a gasp.