I sat in my usual place by the fire, soaking in the heat that radiated from it, trying to ward off the bitterly cold night air. I sighed to myself.
"I'm going for a walk." I stated, as I stood up and made my way to my shelter to grab my thick cloak. Aven looked at me with a worried expression on her face.
"Be careful, kiethar." She said to me, and I waved my hand in her direction. Sunelya slowly stood up, but I shook my head.
"I need to be on my own, Jynla" I told her, and she sat down, looking a little annoyed. I slowly walked through the forest, my arms holding my cloak around myself and trying not to look at the trees. As an elf, I had to respect all nature, but I didn't particularly like trees. They didn't have much life-flame in them. I thought about my sister. we used to be so close, but as our elemental powers developed we grew further apart. I couldn't even confide in her about Anluan.
I walked in the direction of a little village that I had seen as I flew with Sunelya. It was dangerous, I knew, but I liked to live vicariously. I pulled the ribbon that held my braid out of my hair, and put the dark curtains over my condemning ears. Although many were allowed to live without magic in Aeridia, Elves were thought to be 'too magical' and were imprisoned or condemned to death.
I stood and took in my surroundings. It was an average human dwelling. Pretty, but there wasn't anything special about it. I walked through the streets, my midnight cloak carressing the paving stones. My walk came to a standstill as I gasped at the beauty of a building that stood before me. It was a human, Christian church, and it was crafted like an Elven building. I moved towards it and walked in. My ears were filled with the music of the humans' singing, and I sat at the very back. I saw little flames flickering in the back, and was intrigued, but waited until their ceremony was over before I investigated.
The humans filed out, leaving their religious leader behind. He left the room and I went towards the front of the church, where a huge stone table lay. Around it were hundreds of tiny lights. I was amazed, but was pulled from my mind by a voice behind me.
"Felinth, Elvina." I looked at him, wondering how he knew my language and how he knew that I was an Elf. I started to retreat, but he put his hands up to say that he wasn't going to harm me. I looked at him. He was taller than me (which wasn't difficult), and was about middle-aged for a human. "What is your name, Elvina?" He asked me calmly. My mouth disobeyed my head and replied.
"Elowyn, Daughter of Girael." He smiled.
"Excuse me, I have never met an Elf before. I am Father David." He said, bowing his head. I looked at the flames.
"How is this done?" I said, motioning towards them. He smiled and collected one. It was a long cylindrical pediment for a little falme that was connected to a black string. I looked from it to him, and I flinched at he blew it out.
"You light the wick, and the flame burns it. As it burns, the heated wax melts. It is called a candle." I poked the pediment.
"This is wax? Like the wax that comes from a beehive?" I asked.
"The very same." He said, smiling. I smiled back. "You are troubled, my child?" He said to me. I sighed.
"It's hard to explain... Father." I told him. "I believe that someone I love is in trouble but I have no way to find out, or even help as I am busy helping others like me." I said in a rush. He smiled sympathetically.
"Trust in God, and ask him for guidance and protection. He will grant it." He told me. I bit my lip.
"Can someone like me ask him for anything? Would that not make me a hypocrite to ask when I do not pray to him, or acknowledge his existance?" I asked him.
"There's no harm in trying." I nodded, and motioned towards the candle.
"May I have one?" I asked him, and he left to get a 'new' one for me. "Thank you. For everything." I said, grasping his hands. He smiled again.
"No need to tahnk me, my child. Thank you. And may God bless you, and protect you on your journeys. Good luck your child, and I hope that you find your loved one." I smiled, and went towards the door. When he turned, I left 5 coins of the largest currency, Gold.
The journey back to the camp was quicker than it was to leave it. I went to the shelter I shared with Aven and woke her from her slumber. Meredyth sat staring into the fire, as she was on guard that night.
"What is it?" Aven asked. I smiled at her.
"I have something for you. For us." I told her, and she woke up a little more. "Here." I said and held the candle out for her to hold. She looked at me with a blank expression on her face. "It's wax! From a beehive" I told her excitedly. She looked at me strangely. "Watch this." I told her and I set the wick on fire. She gasped as she watched the flame melt the wax so that it flowed down the sides as if it was crying. She looked up at me in wonder.
"It's beautiful." She said. I smiled at her.
"It's earth and fire combined, kiethar. It's like us." I told her, and I watched as a tear escaped her eyes.
"Ri Jynvu." She said to me. And I put the candle down to embrace her.
"Ri Jynvu, Aven." I settled down to sleep, and placed the candle between us. Aven quickly fell back to sleep, but I was too troubled. As I started into the flame, movement above me caught my attention. I tried to make out what it was, but it flew away quickly.
"Was that a hawk?" I said to myself.