Prophecy Story Index

Acceptance
by Becky
May 1997

Kellessan added another few sticks to the campfire, then sat back to lean against the log she'd hauled over for a backrest. It had been a long day -- arriving in Buren, fighting the raiders, getting Tavi, and meeting with Willim again. And she still had several more days of travel to go before she arrived in Yana.

She looked down at the her sword sheath lying next to her. Well, better now than never and regret that I didn't when I had the chance to. I probably should have examined it better before I ended up fighting with those raiders. She pushed herself up and sat on top of the log, then picked up the sheath and pulled the long, heavy broadsword out. For several moments, she just held it up, just looking at it. The blade gleamed in the firelight, sending glimmers and tendrils of light shining out into the dark woods.

Lachiellian. The name whispered across her mind, bringing with it echoes of the images and feelings that were present in the cave the first time she touched the sword. Frowning, she pushed them away. Not now. Not ever. I will not be ruled by a sword, no matter how sentient it may seem to be.

Setting aside the leather sheath, which had somehow become long enough to hold the larger broadsword, she laid the sword across her legs, running her fingers lightly down the smooth surface of the blade from hilt to tip and back. The blade was normal by all appearances, but she somehow knew inside that it would never need sharpening and that it would not stain or rust or dim.

The leather-wrapped hilt was a two-handed grip, but she knew she could easily use it one-handed if she needed to, though not for very long, considering the heavy weight of the blade. The cross pieces of the hilt were constructed of a sturdy metal, with a dark blood red stone affixed into the end of each. She traced the hilt with a few careful fingers, then stopped as her fingers encountered a slight indentation.

Kell lifted the sword up to look at the hilt closer. At the spot where the cross pieces met on the blade, there was a pattern of dips. She shifted forward, sitting back on the ground and bringing the hilt into the firelight, using the flickering flame to identify a pattern of a circle with a diagonal line going through it. I know that pattern. Where have I seen ...?

Her hand went to her throat where the sword cloak pin held together her cloak. The pin. She looked closer, leaning more toward the light. Yes, it would fit there. As the firelight reflected off the blade, she could almost see writing on the metal, but not quite. Instinct and curiosity gave her courage.

Kell sat directly in front of the fire, throwing a few more sticks on it to keep it burning brightly. Folding her legs together, she laid the sword across her lap, then removed the pin and placed it carefully on the indentation.

At first nothing happened and she felt that maybe she was mistaken.

But then the two dark red stones began to glow ever so faintly. Lavender-blue-yellow light radiated from the blade itself. Instinctively she left one hand over the pin and the hilt as words in a complicated and complex language unknown to her appeared on the blade. At first, she didn't recognize them and couldn't read them. But then, suddenly, she understood. It passed through her mind that she shouldn't be able to, but that worry vanished as she whispered the few words written that appeared before her:

"To you the Protector of the land of Rill, we give Lachiellian."

The light flared and blinded her, causing her to cry out briefly. And then she began to see images dancing in her mind again, slower this time. She saw hands crafting a sword, this sword, slowly, lovingly, carefully. She saw the sword passed from hand to hand, being used in battles, sometimes winning, sometimes losing. The images swirled past her too fast for her to pick up any specific face. They stopped, only for a moment, on a young man, holding the sword in front of him before the images continued on. They paused another time on the face of a young woman standing with the young man. In her hand was the sword cloak pin.

More images of the sword fly past her. Two red stones being placed in the hilt cross pieces. The pin being pressed to the sword, both bathed in a bright yet gentle light. The sword, surrounded by light, resting in the rock crevice where she had found it.

The images vanished and there was suddenly only darkness. Darkness and a voice reciting what she recognized as ancient prophecy, part of which she knew from the scrap shown to her by Hinarme.

Kell jerked her hands away from the sword, inhaling sharply. The light pulsed for a few more moments, then began to fade away. She stared accusingly at the sword in her lap. My whole life has been foreordained. I know I said that I knew that use of Lachiellian would change me. I agreed to that risk. But not this. This is not what I want ... is it?

Indecision made her hesitate. She wanted, needed, to overthrow Seth. She would give anything to get rid of him completely, take back Rillanda, and put her parents back on the thrones, where they belong, so that the land and its people could have life again. But was she willing to give up her own idea of independence to do so? Willing to become what Lachiellian and the Light Sisters would have her be? Willing to forego the easy and quick path of darkness and revenge for the harder and longer path of light and life?

Feeling strangely calm, Kell took back up the pin and refastened it to her cloak absently, still staring at the sword, plain again, nothing more than a fighting sword. She grasped the hilt and stood up, swinging the sword a few times experimentally. It felt ... right, correct, meant to be ... foreordained.

She held the sword aloft, staring at it as the light of the fire played down the blade. The question that hung before her was which path would she take. Would she accept the challenge of walking with the Light and letting them work through her, change her, mold her, to help Rillanda?

Rillanda is my home. And the Light will not harm me. No matter what I become, no matter how I change, no matter how I am 'molded,' those two things will always be true. And I will do whatever it takes, give up whatever I must, to see my home set free. Something inside her flared, then settled, disappearing deep within, where she could feel the changes waiting to begin.

Kellessan, daughter of no one, the prophesied Protector, looked up into the stars and whispered two words into the night air, knowing they would be heard.

"I accept."

- The End -


Prophecy Story Index