Hi :)

Here is a part of the first of my fantasy tales, which I've started writing down just recently. Perhaps some of you will enjoy reading, more is going to appear soon. I also make drawings for the tales, if someone wanted to see, then on my profile there's a link to my DEVIANTART page.


THE FIRST TALE

Of Férchén's and Falcho's birth, and of the star scholar's sharp stare

Férchén and Falcho were elven twins, alike as two drops of warm rain during the Season of Drought, with hair as black as raven feathers and eyes as blue as petals of wood forget-me-nots. They were born on the first day of the Cypress Month, in 2223rd year of the Fifth Era, to an embroiderer Méra and a pedler Fen.

A custom of the Forest People said to plant the boys' month trees on the occasion of their birth, what the village dwellers did, but saw it rather as a symbolic gesture, since everyone knew well a climate in that part of the Land of Séras favored not cypresses, and for years none of them had grown there. Strangely, however, the trees rooted, and old Salché, who in the village was considered a prophet and who was supposed to know mysteries of nature even better than some of the druids, found it a sign, and she said the boys would not only be under protection of the cypress trees now, but they would also inherit their character – charisma, imaginativeness and rush to perpetuity. Méra only laughed at these words, though, and said she believed not in such things at all as the Master of Trees had created trees to be trees, and her sons to be her sons, and they each would be their own selves, free from the others.

Salché shrugged and snorted, "What may wanderers from the seaside know of trees?"

There could be some truth in that as Méra and Fen in sooth came from shores of the sea, and for long years of their childhood and early youth they had lived amidst cliffs, dunes and seaside woods, in the land of falks, for whom the roar of a sea a thousandfold more precious secrets hid than the rustle of a forest.

Soon after the boys' birth, Fen decided to set forth on their journey once more, for pedlers never stayed anywhere for very long, that was the nature of their work and life. The children were strong, so Méra agreed with her husband, and with the arrival of a new month, they left the village on foot at the break of dawn, heading southwestwards to wait out snows in the warmer regions of Séras.

Old Salché never knew if she had been right, for she not anymore saw the boys. She had died a few years before a day Mèra, Fen and their sons once again appeared in the village, carrying with them a soft wind along with smell of herbs.

"Take, try, buy! Will be enough for everyone!" called Fen when he spread the brought herbs out on a trunk of the fallen tree, and a group of elves gathered across the trunk began to sniff and taste the dried plants, jostling and pushing each other in the process. "Férch, pack into the sacs, move it, briskly, briskly!"

Alongside Fen stood no more than teen-age* Férchén, with his eyes on his own thoughts and a delicate trembling of oak leaves on the dense boughs high above him rather than on the dried herbs in front of him.

Only at a sound of his father's urging Férch as if awoke. Brushing a strand of the black hair off of his forehead and burying it under the hat, he reached for a linen sac and started to put pieces of nettle leaves the first of the buyers had showed him into it.

Where, on Likho, is Falcho? Why it's me who helps again? he thought, partly with a grievance, partly with jealousy of what discoveries his brother had managed to make in this unfamiliar place of their birth, more interesting than trading of herbs at the moss-covered tree.

His musings were disturbed by a voice from across the trunk, directed at his father, "Is that you, Fen?"

Férch raised his head, and curiosity glittered suddenly in his careful eyes when in front of him he saw a figure of an elven old man with a gnomish gaze and a face wrinkled and dry like folds in rocks, mightily pale in grey light of the cloudy eventide. The old man was clad in a weird, dark blue mantle reminding Férchén of druids' cloaks he had once sighted in Sén Serén. They differed in embroidery, though - while the druidic mantles were ornamented with a sign of the Council of Druids, entwining sprouts of all month trees, the hems of this odd old man's cloak were finished, very neatly, with a gilded motif of star constellations, looking almost as wonderfully as in Férch's imagination illustrations of clusters of stars on the maps of the sky in the secret libraries of sylphs.

His father too moved his gaze toward the old man, who had talked to him, and his face beamed, so he must have recognized him.

"Fen!" the old man ascertained almost with a smile, then, going around roots of the fallen oak, he walked to the other side of the trunk and spread his arms to embrace Férch's father. "So good to see you once more."

"And you must be a son of Fen, although unalike him you seem?" he asked soon afterwards, when he turned his shining like torchlight, almost yellow eyes to Férchén.

For a while he pierced the boy with his gaze, at what Férch straightened up with inborn pride, raised his brow and said, "Yes. I am Férchén."

The old man chuckled under his breath, as if in Férch's words he had found something particularly amusing, the prior graveness left not his eyes, though. "And where is your reflection in a looking glass, Férchén the Slayer of Storms?"

Even if the usually brilliant elven boy understood what in sooth this strange question had concerned, he already was too stunned by the old man's figure and astonished with a nickname he had called him by to answer immediately. He just glanced at his father, who soon came to his help.

"You've changed not at all, Wélrod! Still, you mistake elven children for heavenly bodies," Fen said with amusement, he got serious, however, and as if lost in thoughts when Wélrod asked at that, "Have I mistaken you for the false one?"

The old man remembers father from the times when he was a child, thought Férch with growing interest. Was father here as a child, then? And to which heavenly body did he compare him? Which did he compare me to? Oh, why have Falcho and me never got any map of the sky, why?

"It wasn't hard to not mistake me," Fen only said, then he spoke to Férchén, "Where's Falcho? Usually it's impossible to split you, yet when it comes right down to it... Honestly!"

Férch shrugged vigorously, trying to show he knew not and that he himself would have wished to know. Sometimes Falcho didn't explain even to him what he did, or where he went, what always angered and hurt Férchén. He had never told his brother about it, though, since he himself was not sure why he cared so much. Perhaps, for Falcho's secrecy at the same time caused him some anxiety, fear even. Usually it seemed to him his brother and him were as close to each other as possible, and that they knew everything of themselves. However, on such days it was just the opposite, Férch thought then he knew utterly nothing of Falcho, and his attempts to understand him were like catching a wind blow into a palm.

Férchén liked not such days. He was afraid of them, though he knew not why.

To be continued


* Elves from my tales live about 400 years, thus their age is calculated differently. Teen-age Férchén matches more or less 8-9-year-old human boy.

"e" in the elven speech we read as short e /ɛ/, "é" as long e /i/