Chapter 28

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But their worries, at least at the outset, were unfounded. The party had an uneventful journey to the capital of Khaballe. The only thing that aroused their concern was the purported sightings of large birds far off in the distance. The elves were blessed with keen senses and renowned for their sight at great distances. The Warriors of the Wood claimed they saw the birds toward dusk every few evenings after they left the comfort of the Sylvan. But they could never be sure what it was they saw, if anything.

The travelers had taken the main road which ran from Qyntes'ah down to Sevhert'ah and from there to Bhel'Ehzz. The weather had been pleasant and they made good time. The journey had taken a little over two weeks. Arhyvhynne had occupied most of her time conversing with Lyrqyldyn and Syrqyndyl. The Warriors of the Wood kept each other company with tales of unrequited love and danger as well as songs. Ghemella kept to herself, understandably still shaken over the loss of her hand.

Uriel also remained detached on the long journey. It was the most out of place he felt since arriving at the Towers. He was the proverbial stranger in a strange land and now that he had been on the road for the better part of a Khaballean month the differences he encountered made him feel uneasy and unwelcome. He tried to tell himself it would be the same if he had travelled to a remote part of Earth, but everything just somehow felt different. It was almost as if he was watching himself stagger and stumble through a maze that a child could master. Like knowing where the exit was but not being able to get there. But I don't know where the exit is, he would tell himself over and over again. He didn't even want to consider the reasons he was sent here in the first place.

As the group grew closer to Bhel'Ehzz, the conversations lessened. The days began to fill with the long periods of silence attributable to boredom and fatigue. But for Arhyvhynne and Uriel, the days were also marked with apprehension.

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