"Naria? Armes?" I called for my two friends. The first light had come upon the day, several days from the arrival and departure of the humans....and now they were done as well. I had come to visit them....though I could not find them any of the places I knew them to usually roam. Could they be hiding from me?
When I returned from searching in the forrests, I came upon a small gathering of elves all about the King's throne. Naria was not in her normal place beside him and Armes was no where to be seen. "Could no one find them?" cried the King desperately.
A collective silence was heard. A few shook their heads. The King muttered something under his breath, slamming the end of his staff into the ground in frustration.
"Then you must send out a party, my King. To hunt for them." came the cool, clear voice of Althen as he hobbled down the steps. I rushed to him, helping him down the last ones. What was he doing? He never came down to these councils any more.
"Indeed!" Naria's father exclaimed, examining the crowd.
"I shall go!" volunteered Jadir, a younger elf who did not hide that he was pursuing Naria.
"And Aileah will go with him!" Althen said.
"What?!" I whispered, stunned.
"Outrageous, she's a human wom-!" declared Jadir incredulously.
"You know, Jadir, she may not match your strength, but she has beat you many times with her technique and careful thinking when you do not take the time for such things." said Althen calmly, Jadir looked down at his hands, furious and humiliated. "She is a friend to Naria and Armes. Perhaps she can help convince them to return."
"Yes, good!" claimed the King. "Fetch their horses, they shall leave this moment!"