Chapter Thirty-Four: The Blood on Their Hands (5)Mature

“So what exactly are we going to make this talisman from?  Wood? Metal?”

            The five of them were making their way back up the spiral staircase that led out of the dungeons, with Seoc in the lead and Seymour, who had asked the question, following close behind him.

            “No, wood’s too soft, an’ I dinna know metalworkin’, sae ’less anyone else here does, I’d advise against it.  Anyway, Vampire Lady told me that it would be best if ’twere made o’ somethin’ meanin’ful ta Henry, somethin’ he will no’ misplace.  Simon, as his brother, can you think o’ anythin’ that might fit that description?”

            They reached the top of the stairs and piled out into the corridor beyond.  Simon shrugged and shook his head uncertainly.  “Nothing comes to mind.”

            “Weel, what things ha’ had the most influence over him?”

            “Must those things be positive?”

            Seoc considered Simon’s question only for a moment.  “No.”

            “Magic, certainly.  And family.  The two forces that have had the most power over him, poor chap.  No matter how much he fights, he can never free himself of them.  Terrible fate.”

            Seymour creased his eyebrows.  “If the talisman reminds him of something he hates, might he not be more likely to lose it?  Accidentally purposeful like?”

            “No,” Simon said.  “I don’t think so.  My brother tends to become very attached to objects that cause him emotional distress.”

            Fiona started to say something, but Seoc cut her off.  “But what sort of item would evoke both family and magic?”

            “There were other mages in the Edmund line, right?” Seymour asked.  “Perhaps some sort of heirloom, owned at one point by a magical ancestor…”

            “We’d ha’ ta go ta Edmund Manor ta find somethin’ like that, would we no’?” Fiona interrupted.  “There’s no time for that if he is ta ha’ it before Uncle Alasdair takes him oot o’ his cell.”

            Seoc shook his head.  “No.  No, I dinna think we would.  This castle, after all, was built by them.  The Edmunds, I mean.  There’s probably tons o’ their ald stuff lyin’ aboot the place, hidden away, maybe.  But I dinna think an heirloom is what we’re lookin’ for.  Moriba seemed ta want it ta be somethin’ we make ourselves, no’ just carve symbols into.  More powerful that way, probably.  If we could find some sort o’ heirloom an’ melt it doon…but again, I’m no smith.  It’s jus’…”  He looked upward suddenly, as if something tremendous had just dawned upon him, then set off down the corridor at a brisk trot.  “Rezyn, I know!  I know exactly what we can make it from!”

            “Where are we going?”

            Seoc looked back over his shoulder, grinning his most evil grin.  “Ta the crypts!”

The End

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