Charge of the Goddess (Chpt 9-10) by Nicole Thompson

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Chapter Nine
I was exhausted.

Not only was my body exhausted, but so was my soul and any magick I carried. Now I sat in that secret room (not much of a secret anymore) with Irian. The Irian, I remembered. The colors in her hair were bright as ever and that mischievous twinkle in her eyes was back as well. She looked well rested, no sign of the fever marring her features.

"How did you do it?" Irian had asked me earlier. I had then turned to Untar. We had decided to keep the extent of my powers a secret. That meant telling no one. Of course there were the people who had seen my power and rumors would circulate but we could still do a little good by keeping quiet.

But I couldn't keep this secret from Irian. So I brought her to this secret place. Now she sat before me, amazed by this power. We had grown up together only a few towns away. No one had realized I had so much power. "But you must tell no one, Irian" I reminded her for the fourth time.

"Of course I won't tell anyone," She looked into my eyes as she made the promise. "I'm just processing."

Soon our talk turned to other things. It had been quite some time since we had seen each other and corresponded. We shared news from our towns and were caught up on all details when Irian changed the subject. "What about that man you brought with you, Untar?" Irian asked. "He is rather handsome."

"Yes he is." I looked down. And seemingly not what I had thought. I did not voice these thoughts however. I did not want to share that, even if it was with Irian. Instead I told her, "He is Tharina's son."

"Tharina has a son?"

"Yes, his father is a wealthy land holder but is not married to Tharina."

"And you have never met him until now?" Irian asked, surprise masking her face.

"It seems I was always gone when he visited."

"That is very strange."

"Yes it is." I looked away. I had tried not to think about the strangeness of that fact before.

"Senara, it could have something to do with fate. If you had grown up knowing him things might have been very different."

"Very different indeed," I responded.


We spent another day in Irian's village. Despite my protests, Untar managed to make me sleep. Once he had gotten me to lie down I fell asleep immediately and didn't wake up for hours. It was dark out when I woke again to see Untar's face above me. I realized despairingly that he was the last thing I had seen before sleeping and the first when I awoke. Oddly though, it didn't seem unnatural. "Good morning." He whispered.

"How long have I been asleep?"

"About ten hours."

I sat up quickly, almost smashing my face into Untar's. "Ten hours?" I repeated, slightly annoyed that I had slept so long. "I should be doing something. Helping to make sure everyone's okay. Or cleaning up, or doing something."

"Senara, no one expects you to be doing anything right now." Untar said, gently pushing me back onto the sofa. "Without you, they would all be dead; if not by now then within the week. Don't punish yourself."

"Well, I have slept for ten hours, isn't that long enough?" I asked, begging with Untar like a small child.

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