The Saga of Villius Bluesteel
She was the kind of woman you could tell was behind you even without looking. But not in a pleasant way, it was more akin to how you knew there was a storm in the air. The hairs on your neck stood up at the raw authority of the storm and you knew that shelter might be a good idea soon.
I turned and nodded. “Lady Ralffson,” I said…I found it always an advantage to reveal you knew the name of someone you never met. It gave authority and an aura of mystery. But there was no shock on her face. And why should there be? She was the wife of a local clan lord and blood related to kings. Of course I would know her.
She returned my nod of greeting, “Edward, son of William and Clara…bard of the south lands and one of the Watchers of the Coming Sunset.”
I wished that my face had remained as stony as her’s did at my greeting. But even if I could have survived her knowledge of my parents names without flinching, her knowledge of my secret society was too much to absorb without notice.
“How..” I questioned.
“My son,” she said, “is summoned to Geoff; called by a letter from Sir Christopher…one of the Heroes of the Key and himself a Watcher of the Sunset, Keeper of the Last Tapestry. The Tapestry has been lifeless for thirty years. But it has begun to show the future again…the end again. So you summoned the heroes who it showed. One being my son.”
“Do you think, man of the south, that you alone have prophets? And that I, who would command the snowflakes if I could…who would charge Vautn in his duties if I had the power…would not be aware of the destiny of my only child? I may not have a tapestry that reveals the end of all things. But I would not be caught idle by the devil king, nightmare lord or the Neverending Cold.”
I accepted her rebuke with grace. After all, she was right. I did not think of the prophets of the barbarians in the cold. Or, if I did, I did not think they would be our equals.
“Then,” I said, “You know we prevent the end of the worlds across the multiverse. That we aid and record the deeds of the heroes involved. It is a great honor…”
“To be placed on back story duty?”
I had no words to answer. There was a reason for my exile of sorts. She softened a moment.
“Do not worry, bard of the south. I will tell you of my son. Who he is, what he is like. And you will tell me of their current exploits, seen by your people, in details greater than scrying can provide. Do we have a bargain?”
I nodded. “I have means of communication with my people. I can tell you of his Saga as it occurs with only slight delay. But much has passed”
“I don’t care about delay, only accuracy. And in return, I will tell you about his destiny and his past.”
I bowed, “We have a deal, Lady Ralffson.”
“Then,” she said, “I would know of his companions…”