The adventure begins HERE!
“Education is the kindling of a flame, not the filling of a vessel.” ― Socrates
TriAnna sat upon the ground with a book in her lap. She was humming sweetly as Marcel worked under his damaged vessel. She visited him daily at the site of his crashed ship and she never arrived empty handed. She would bring him food and water, strange tools or unusual parts and most importantly she would bring him books.
At first they were simple things, much like the pictures books one might use to teach a toddler the alphabet or basic shapes. She would point to an image and say the Lysin word and Marcel would repeat and then give her the same word in his language. As they grew in their understanding of each other and their languages would bring books of Lysin poetry and Marcel found that he could lose himself completely in her musical voice.
When he was overcome and unable to voice his gratitude and his need of her friendship, he would sing to her his seafarer’s song, and she would rest her head and smile with fire dancing in her eyes.
They were learning to communicate quickly and Marcel enjoyed every moment with her. Lysin was a difficult language, the words soft and round with a meter that was a challenging dance upon his heavy tongue.
TriAnna was infinitely patient and well mannered, and would find ways to make him smile when the lesson was becoming frustrating. Despite his challenges he would always push through just to see her green eyes sparkle with delight when he succeeded.
Trianna seemed to pick up Marcel’s language without the slightest effort, at times simply knowing words that he had not yet taught her to speak. He had theorized that she was able to hear his internal dialogue, and extract the word from his mind. He had tested this idea and found it to be so, but only when he was particularly focused.
TriAnna’s two sprites visited him as well. She would conjure them and they would flutter around his crash site like tiny hummingbirds happy to see Marcel and to be useful.
The amber sprite he had taken to calling Nimble because she was clever and quick. The amethyst he called Trixie because she was a troublemaker and a clown. The sprites always worked together and often disagreed, but the two never failed to get a job done to perfection.
Marcel found the tiny girls infinitely helpful and he especially enjoyed the way they would giggle at him when he would mispronounce a word during his lessons. He delighted in learning ways to flatter and tease them; when they were happy they would burn more brightly and he was charmed by their every action.
Repairing his Auric Rectifier was a daily task that he swallowed like a bitter pill. He worried that even if he were able to pull the machine together there would still be obstacle of finding a power source.
He wiped his hands across his pants leaving a deep, oily scar as he slid out from under the machine. While it was true that time was passing into months since his arrival, he realized that one of the benefits of having an inter-dimensional time machine was not having to hurry.
If he were being honest with himself he couldn’t imagine leaving TriAnna anymore than he could find a way for her to come home with him. He used the knowledge of his inevitable departure as a wall around his feelings and he reminded himself often that feeling too close to any of these new friends would make returning home difficult.
Home was becoming a strange concept. He missed his friends and his business, the color of the sky and the sparkle of Port Twain on summer’s evening. However, even in the gloom of the perpetual darkness of Lys, he had never felt more at home when TriAnna was with him. Though they had never touched he felt more connected to her than any person he had ever known. Their ability to communicate without words, to respect one another and to laugh together… he was certain it was the sort of feeling that made poets write and sailors sing.
“Marcel,” TriAnna said sweetly, interrupting his thoughts, “Where you come to, do you not know Dagur and No’tt as we do?”
“Where I come from,” he corrected kindly, “I’m not sure. Please explain?”
TriAnna bit her lip, a habit that she had when she was preparing to say something of importance. “There is much,” she said with a sigh, trying to find a place to begin. “but importance at this time is that we are ending No’tt now, and will enter into Dagur. I want not to frighten of you when it happens.”
TriAnna began drawing a pattern of circles into the ashen ground with a piece of copper wire. Marcel watched in amazement as she drew.
“Seasons?” Marcel queried, seeing what appeared to be an explanation of the heavens and the turning of planets. Marcel motioned with his hand into the inky sky, “Do you mean…?”
She thought for a moment, then lept to her feet excitedly.
“Come,” she said. Without warning she took his hand into hers. His heart leapt as an electrical current moved through him, a warmth and an excitement from her touch unlike anything he had ever known. He was exhilarated, his veins running through like lava and molten sunlight and bliss.
She ran ahead of him, pulling his arm and laughing until they were quite far from his ship. He worried momentarily that he might not be able to find his way back. Finally, She stopped in a clearing, and turned to him with a smile still holding his hand in hers.
Trixie and Nimble came fluttering behind and they danced around TriAnna and Marcel excitedly. He could hear them singing a cheerful song and giggling.
“TriAnna, what? Where are we?” Marcel was confused and lost, but the playful look in her eyes reassured him.
Before she could answer, the world around them exploded into a symphony of white. The sky paled into a rosy sunrise and the trees which had been barren and twisted, burst forth with millions of tiny star shaped flowers. Their scent was gentle and sweet and filled the air around them. The charred and lifeless ground sprung into life with a sort of moss that covered every inch of the visible world in a carpet of silver. A warm breeze blew and tiny petals danced into the heavens.
As light ascended into day, Marcel could see a sun of glistening argentum and three small azure moons in the blushing sky. Behind TriAnna could be seen an expanse of mountains that shone like obsidian, a massive sea sparking and calm and in the valley below grew a regal and thriving city. The view was magical and breathtaking.
Marcel was speechless. The veil of this strange world had lifted. It had been sleeping through the dormant season of No’tt and now awakened as a world of unparalleled beauty.
As he looked into TriAnna’s face he found that she was glowing and flush from running, her eyes dancing with a green fire. Her smile was radiant and she seemed so proud and pleased to show him her world.
Marcel Ghostraven was swept away. He saw before him a life he had never dared imagine with a woman he would have called a dream if she were not holding his electrified hand.
In that moment he gave up trying to deny what he felt, he let go of his excuses for why he could not love. Whatever became of his life, his friends, or his world was of no consequence. He needed to be near this creature of light and fire. If he never felt her touch again he would be content just to be near her and make her smile.
He was a willing captive at home in this place called Lys. He never wanted to imagine another moment away from TriAnna’s side.
TriAnna stared at Marcel, the song of her laughter replaced by a deluge of emotion. Her face became soft and tender as she empathically connected to his moment. She placed her hands over her heart and smiled with an uncontainable joy. A silver tear rolled down her cheek.
“Marcel?” She asked in a nervous whisper, “You feel loving for me?”
Marcel felt flush and faint. He did not know how to answer her in words. He was ecstatic and terrified of losing her. His words were lost in a sea of her light. His mind screamed verses and songs of love, promises of forever, wishes and hopes for …
She flew into his arms.
She was small and delicate and soft against him and he tangled his fingers into her hair, breathing her in. He did not know her customs, he was afraid to kiss her, he was overwhelmed by touching her, he wanted so many things- but just embracing her was enough.
Just holding her closely, free of his walls, was enough.
They stood locked in an embrace as the alabaster petals of Dagur danced like snowflakes around them.