Chapter 14

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Arhyvhynne slowly moved to the tunnel on the right. The last forty hours had taken a tremendous toll on her. Her posture was slouched, her eyes were still red and she had dark smudges under them. The white painted symbols on her face were barely noticeable against her pale skin. The white robe had been in the Sacred Grove until early morning and had only two hours of repose before having to begin her preparation for the Trials. She had the look of a lamb knowingly being led off to slaughter.

"Are you both ready?" Wyxotte asked, her breath still labored.

"Yes," Eyrmysse answered quickly, her voice betraying her anxiousness.

When Wyxotte looked to Arhyvhynne, the young witch walked over to her sister and embraced her. "Goddess' protect," she said and kissed Eyrmysse on both cheeks. Eyrmysse only looked at her blankly, refusing to acknowledge her sister in any way. Arhyvhynne grimaced at the lack of response and then returned to her spot in front of the right tunnel.

Wyxotte drew in a deep breath and cast the activation spell. For a moment, there was only a tingling in the air. Then wisps of smoke began to appear in the antechamber. The tendrils became thicker and took on a soft glow as they filled the entire room, making it impossible to see beyond a few feet. The effect could not have lasted more than a minute, but when the smoke thinned and then disappeared, Arhyvhynne and Eyrmysse were gone.


As the ethereal smoke filled the room, both sisters could barely make out something at the entrance to their respective tunnels. They approached warily and were aghast to be greeted by the beckoning figure of Qhen Khyrhyelle in a badly decomposed state. Eyrmysse managed a sharp intake of breath before she spoke the Words of dispelling. Arhyvhynne meanwhile, cried out and moved to greet her mother. But as Eyrmysse's Words sounded forth and Arhyvhynne reached out a hand and touched her mother, the shade of Qhen Khyrhyelle dissipated, leaving the two young witches trapped within the tunnels, their fate before them.

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