Charge of the Goddess (Chpt 7-8) by Nicole Thompson

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Chapter Seven
"But what you described in your dream only occurred this morning." Irian said, confusion covering her face. She had led me to a small but comfortable room at the end of a dark corner. It was probably forgotten and I ran my finger over the table revealing dust neglected but it was a nice place to hide.

"Well, thank the Goddess, she has the power of foresight." I took Irian's hands in my own. "The important thing is that I am here. Now put me to work. Whatever you need, I can do. I brought enough herbs to last a lifetime and all the books I have on fevers. Now what type of fever are we dealing with?"

"Your guess is as good as mine. I know nothing." Irian replied.

"Well, what cures have worked? What herbs do not?" I asked next, hoping she could give me something to work with.

"I'm sorry Senara," Irian said, looking about ready to break down. "I know nothing. Everything I thought I knew about fevers has slipped from my mind. I keep searching my brain but I always come up with nothing. All I can do is pray over dying bodies." Then her voice took on a more feral tone. "But I am also not willing to give up. These are my people. I will either heal them, or die trying."

I was speechless. I had never heard Irian speak so forcefully and with such passion. Now all she needed was a bit more confidence. "Irian, I am amazed by your dedication. However, there is one important thing you must do before leaving this room." Coming towards her I drew her down so she was lying on the couch. "You must rest. You will soon be no good for your people." I pushed her down more forcefully when she began to protest. "I understand how you feel. I would feel the same if it was my town. But you need to rest. I'll send someone in to fetch you and give you some food in an hour or two. I can handle things for now."

Finally convinced, Irian nodded and relaxed into her pillow. I waited for her eyes to be shut for some time before turning to the door. "Thank you, Senara" Irian said quietly. "May the Goddess Bless and Keep you." I gave a slight bow and a small smile before turning away. I had a long day and night in front of me.

I soon learned that the room I had first entered was the room containing those most far along with the fever. I took a look at some of the patients and quickly turned to my books, trying to identify the fever itself. After a half an hour or so I left the room in control of the healers, giving them in depth instructions on how to treat the patients. There was still hope.

The next room was mass chaos. There was no form of organization in the setup of the room and it was filled to over capacity. It took me hours to set this room straight and make some sense of order. Then I turned to the patients. It was here that I found a possible reason for the fever. It had probably started on one of the farms. A small child was the first to be diagnosed. She had died that same day. However, the fever seemed to progress differently for everyone based on there age. It didn't take me long to identify it has the same fever that had plagued me as a child.

That finally established I could start curing people.

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