Saturday, 27 May 2017

The Shattered Oracle - III - As Oracles are Wont to Do - Page 3


As Oracles are Wont to Do

- Page Three -

"Yeah, it doesn't make much sense. Master Ollianes wants Mom to spend more time at the Ullthosian Sanctum. He's all into Mom being a part of that damned ritual in eight months. He'd know by attacking us with a nethengheist like that, it would only make Mom want to come home faster. Or abandon the ritual altogether."

Thraya stood behind her brother with her arms crossed and her head down in severe contemplation. She lifted her right hand up to rub at her temples. She kept fighting against the situation, trying to make sense of it. There had to be a rational explanation.

"What if it's some kind of twisted test? Ollianes did it to make mother choose between us and him? You know how he always acted towards us during meals and fests when Mom invited him here. He always looked down his nose at us." Serranos took a minute to look over his shoulder at the twins. "And you remember how he always kept being really creepy about the two gremlins. He kept trying to touch Jhulessi's head when she was still a baby."

The twins stopped and looked at each other with a startled expression. Jhulessi lifted her hair up so that Nesbinet could rub her head in pantomime with the memory coming out of their brother's mind. Jhulessi shook her head and Nesbinet stopped. She leaned forward and began to massage his head as well. Nesbinet gave a queer look.

"You've been listening to your mother's and my arguments too much. Stop it. Don't make any more allegations about that senile old fool."

Thraya's father turned back to his work in a huff and his voice was getting cross. Something about pinning the event on the old oracle didn't feel right to Thraya. He was creepy, and he was capable of just about anything in her mind, but the presence she felt in her sibling's room that night didn't mesh with that accusation. The feeling felt like her very mother in the room; a dark, twisted, and unholy reflection of her mother, but very much like her.

"It could be a different kind of omen."

The voice was quiet like a whisper. At first, Thraya didn't understand if it was spoken or was some errant telepathic thought occurring to her mind. It was when she saw her father turn to look over at the twins that she realized it was from Jhulessi.

"We've felt that kind of thing before. We call them 'ripples.' Sometimes the energies don't move just right. Sometimes they flow upstream."

Thraya's father's eyes went wide, both at the shock of hearing his youngest children's voices, but also at the complex and bewildering thoughts that such young minds could produce. Thraya leaned forward, putting her hands on her knees and knelt down into a stoop beside the twins. Serranos remained oblivious and focused on the letter.

"Stream of thoughts? Of energy?"

Thraya let her voice run with her thoughts. The twins were always vague when they spoke, being more adept with thoughts and complex concepts rather than with verbal communication. It was their strength and their weakness.

"No. Time."

Jhulessi looked over to Nesbinet, waiting for him to take over. A crackle of subtle energies moved between them. The next mouth to begin speaking words would be Nesbinet's.

"All of you think of time as a river that only flows downhill. Once you've passed a point in the river, you never see it again. You have a memory of it; an echo. That is all."

Nesbinet stopped and allowed Jhulessi to eagerly pick up where he left off.

"This is a flawed way of seeing. Time is too complex for that. The ripples we see can move through time into the past. With enough energy, all things can be. No matter how many limitations you think exist between you and it." 

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