Exodus: The Windwalker Archive: Book 3 (Legends of Agora)

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Book: Exodus: The Windwalker Archive: Book 3 (Legends of Agora) by Michael James Ploof Read Free Book Online
Authors: Michael James Ploof
blanket and a pillow, and as the people began pairing up or entering the sleeping spaces alone, Talon discovered that indeed, there was a place for everyone.
    He slept that night among them in one of the curved inlets. As he watched the faint light dance within the crystal walls, he thought how fortunate he was, and how correct Gretzen and Azzeal had been in their estimation of him. He thought back on what he had done and found that he was proud. For the first time in his life, he entertained the notion that perhaps, just perhaps, he was destined for great things.

Chapter 12
Good Company
    Kreal Windwalker will soon have a choice to make, one that will decide not only his fate, but the fate of his son. My visions can change, as they so often have. Less than half of what I see comes to be, for the winds of fate and time are always changing. Thousands of paths there are, and from each path a thousand more branch out. I have focused on one path, one set of visions. It is up to Talon and Kreal to walk that path.
    -Gretzen Spiritbone
    As much as Talon enjoyed basking in the glow of his people’s newfound happiness, he knew that Azzeal’s punishment would soon take effect, and there were precious few days that he might spend with the elf who had changed his life so.
    He returned to the tower of vine early the next morning and found Gretzen and Azzeal about to sit down to a meal.
    “Hello, hello,” said Azzeal from the cooking area. “How did the people like their accommodations?”
    “Excellent. They probably haven’t slept so peacefully in all their lives.”
    “Good,” said Azzeal, grinning. “Please, join us for breakfast.”
    Gretzen poured the three of them tea, and Azzeal filled their bowls with steaming fish head soup set on a bed of rice. After the meal, they went for a walk along the river, and Azzeal named all of the strange flowers and plants lining the walkways and arching bridges. Talon was amazed at some of the species that the elves had created. The special vines were the most interesting, for they could be manipulated to create just about any structure and were incredibly strong.
    Talon, Azzeal, and Gretzen took lunch on the banks of the river surrounded by cattails and willows, and watched the wildlife within the wetlands. Gretzen seemed forlorn—much more so than her usual stoic demeanor. Talon didn’t have to ask why. He knew that in her own way she loved the elf, as he loved her as well. Theirs had been a fast friendship, Talon knew. Both were students of magic, and Gretzen offered Azzeal a glimpse into forbidden spirit magic, while he filled her with wonder and made her feel young again.
    Talon knew that he had only another day with the elf, and he should have a million question to ask, but he found himself wondering what exactly he should ask. Azzeal had been elusive about Talon’s future. If he knew anything more, he wasn’t speaking of it. It was just as well, Talon supposed. He wouldn’t want to know the day of his death the way Azzeal did. What a curse it must be for the elf. Remembering that it would be one of his own descendants who would kill Azzeal, Talon shivered.
    “Why did you do it?” Talon asked Azzeal. “If you saw that by saving me you would die, why did you do it?”
    Gretzen offered Talon a small scowl, but Azzeal seemed not to mind the question.
    “During my years living in Beorn’s Cave and studying the land, I watched the Vald and the Skomm. I learned their language and I learned their ways. At first I hated the Vald. They seemed like the vilest creatures I had ever seen. Every time I saw an atrocity play out before my eyes, I wanted to intervene, but…I never did. I fought for years with my morals, agonizing over logic and impulse. I knew in my heart that something had to be done, but you see, three hundred years ago, I was one of the many who advocated non-intervention with the peoples of Agora. I had come to the conclusion through logic and delusions

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