Quest Log - Entry 4

     Last night I was dreaming that I heard a woman crying somewhere on the island. I searched and searched but could not find her. I woke suddenly and realized I could still hear her. I got up and began my search again, this time while awake. It was very dark and I found it difficult to navigate through the thick vines and undergrowth. I was relieved when I saw the flicker of a small fire in the same direction as the woman's voice. Focusing on the small light I made my way carefully trying hard not to make too much noise. I came to the edge of a clearing where I found the woman and stayed hidden. She sat next to the fire, still sobbing, with her head in her hands. With her was a burley looking man, possibly a sailor, and a beautiful dark-haired woman. The man was mumbling and laughing to himself while whittling away at a large piece of wood. The dark-haired woman sat quietly gazing into the fire. I watched them for a while, trying to gage the situation. I sensed no danger and after a time felt compelled to reveal myself. I walked over to greet them but when the sailor saw me he bolted up and exclaimed, "Are ye the one on the quest to Albumdor?"
I was startled by this but answered calmly. "Ah... yes. I am on a quest. And who might you be?"
      He smiled and straightened himself. "I am the stories the sailors tell." He looked toward the crying woman and then back at me. "She bears the grief of the ships lost at sea." Then he widened his smile and looked at the raven haired beauty. "And she..." the sailor continued, "is a lover's dream."
      I nodded, trying to absorb what he had just said to me. "Ah," I said, at a loss for words. I surveyed each of them now that I had a better view. The crying woman was very old. I could not see her face as she kept it covered by her hands and the hood of her worn cloak. Her sobs were low and rhythmic and seemed to fade now into the sound of the waves crashing in the distance. The other woman was a stunning beauty. Her long black hair draped across her back and her dark eyes remained fixed on the flame. She had taken no notice of my approach or any of the conversation. She sat with her arms wrapped around her knees and stared into the fire with a look of happy longing.
     "We are the songs of sea," the sailor went on. "We know ye are bound for Albumdor and have more songs yet to finish for your quest. We would like to come with ye."
     "How did you know I was here?" I asked, feeling as though I was still dreaming.
     "The muses have been singing about your quest. They tell of songs that you have yet to make and the battles you have yet to fight. We could help, you see. Help ye to find your way. We could fight by your side as you battle the many beasts of the island. This land is our home, and we know it well. All we ask in return is that you write our songs. Tell our stories. It has been too long since we were remembered."
     "I would be grateful for your help, but I cannot promise what songs will come from it. There is much of my story that longs to be told as well. What I really need is to get to Albumdor. I have been watching the tide, but the water has yet to cover the rocks and make the way for my small boat to go over undamaged. I have to hurry. I am running out of time."
     It was then that the dark-haired woman began to sing, "Though starless skies cannot guide, I wait for low tide. Your footprints appear by my side." She looked at me and smiled, and then rose and ran toward the sea.
     "WAIT!" the sailer called after her and began to follow.
     "No. It's alright," I said, putting my hand on his arm to stop him. "Those were my words, one of my songs she was singing. I think I understand. She wants me to follow her at low tide." I watched her for a moment. "From what I have seen, the tide will be at its lowest at dawn. I will go then."
The sailer looked angry. "It's not wise to follow such a dreamer. I have many stories of those who went to their death following a woman such as this!"
     "You say you know this land. Do you know another way?" I questioned, dubious.
He shook his head, then answered,"We journey upon the voices of the bards that sing our songs. I know no other way."
     "Then how could you have helped me on this quest? How could you fight?" I exclaimed. He gave me a blank look. "It seems you have made me an empty promise for your own gain," I said confident of this realization. "The lover's dream has given me hope. I will follow her at dawn in answer to my own words. It is the only true guidance I have at the moment." I turned to look at the sea where the woman had gone. I thought I saw her shape moving along the shore. I turned back towards the dwindling fire. The old woman was gone, her crying now silent. When I looked to where the sailor had been he was gone as well. Suddenly I was alone.
     I wandered back toward my camp The closer I got the more uncertain I was of the events of the night. I was thankful for sleep, which came quickly.
I woke just before dawn, packed my things and made my my way to where my boat was waiting on the beach.

1 comment

  • Lauren

    Lauren

    A unique and incredible place that is now drifting into a remembering. The lost tides of which are being grappled and claimed by strange new riders who know not of what really went before, or the weight of it. They are diluted, so much, that they cannot even speak of it. They cannot look upon the embers, still alive in our eyes, borne from the moment in time that we were magnificent.

    A unique and incredible place that is now drifting into a remembering. The lost tides of which are being grappled and claimed by strange new riders who know not of what really went before, or the weight of it. They are diluted, so much, that they cannot even speak of it. They cannot look upon the embers, still alive in our eyes, borne from the moment in time that we were magnificent.

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