Chapter 3: Jekier

The weeks that followed were a blur of No-Faces, (which Jekier had learned was the name of the repulsive creatures that killed Owen), setting up camp multiple times, and hunting. The Green man was silent and preoccupied by scrolls and papers of some sort throughout the time they were traveling. He seemed absorbed in something important, and so Jekier heard no words besides his own for almost 6 weeks. It was not uncommon, being alone with only himself to talk to. He had gone weeks, alone with no one to talk to, when Owen would go to the local towns to trade crops. But this silence felt different. This was a silence that didn't feel natural. It felt forced, as if he wasn't allowed to talk. Nime and Jekier had furious battles, and yet they did not speak a single word to each other. They did not communicate in times where most teams would. It was if some unknown tension was hanging between them, although neither had done anything to upset the other. The battles felt odd too. They felt disconnected, not at all what he had been expecting. In the stories Jekier had read, back on the farm, the hero was always taunting the enemy. But no one spoke during these battles.

Only two nights ago had Jekier participated in the most intense battle he had ever witnessed. There had been eight No-Faces, the most he had ever seen traveling in a group together. They had been following a wolf. That battle had been curious, for multiple reasons. For one thing, No-Faces didn’t need to eat, so he couldn’t see a reason why they were following a wolf. And the way that wolf had looked at him... Those icy-blue eyes had seemed to be looking right into his very soul, in a way that made him feel it was sorry for him. However, that would be preposterous. Wolves couldn’t have human feelings, much less make intended eye contact to communicate feelings. It had only been a few seconds of fighting the No-Faces, when he heard the familiar noise of lightning, and the creatures blew up in front of him. He looked to where the wolf had been, only to find the creature gone. A quick glance at Nime's hidden face, and Jekier knew he was thinking about that wolf as well.

  There was something odd about that wolf, something almost human. Jekier had asked Nime about the wolf  later on, after the fight, but Nime had only ignored him. Later that night, Jekier heard quill scratching on paper. He turned his head in his sleeping bag, to glance at the paper Nime was writing on, as he used a stump as a writing desk. Jekier saw a glimpse of something that said “Ida” on that paper, which bore the Royal stamp. Before he could read more, however, he was hit in the head by a staff, and given a lecture on not reading other's documents. Jekier swore from looking at Nimes papers again. But Jekier was still curious about that wolf. He would dream about a girl every night. She looked like she had been away from civilization for a while, but was pretty in a sense. He was not sure why, but he related the wolf to the girl. Maybe it was the fact that they had the same icy blue eyes. Every time he would have her in his dream, a man in a tuxedo would come beside her, put his hand on her shoulder, and say, “It’s over.”

By this time, Jekier was wondering if they were ever going to reach the Tower. However, after scaling what seemed like the hundredth hill, Jekier saw the largest building he had ever seen. It was made of huge pieces of polished limestone, making an almost two-mile long wall on one side. With a soldier for each ten feet, it was surely an impressive sight. A massive door, made of pure iron, was guarded with at least 50 soldiers holding lances and bows. As Jekier looked at the massive wall and enormous army, he wondered if it had ever been attacked, and if so, how bad they failed.

As Jekier walked through the city, he was absolutley amazed. There were so many people. He had thought that the regional meeting, which included everyone that lived within the town or the people who lived within 20 miles of the town, was large. However, this was massive. Hundreds of people were on one street alone. For some reason he could not understand, everyone seemed to be looking at Jekier. He thought at first they were looking at Nime, but they were definitely focused on him. He decided to brush it off, that it was probable they were staring because he was from a different land, and wasn’t dressed like the people in the city. However, everyone was looking at him, or whispering about him as he walked. Jekier heard the word “King” but couldn’t make out any of the other words with the mix of low voices and foreign accents. He walked on, trying to think of things different about him and the others. He decided it was his father’s sword, seeing that most people were unarmed in the city. That didn’t stop the feeling that people were studying him.

   After about ten minutes of walking in the city, Jekier was lost. It all seemed to be one winding road after the next. He wondered how anyone could live in such a place, and know their way around. But everyone else seemed to know exactly where they were going. Nime had found the two of them horses, so it was somewhat easier to move around in the crowd. Jekier noticed about five other Green Men walking around in the streets. They looked just like Nime, slightly younger, and carried a presence that demanded authority and respect.

After what seemed like endless hours of pointless meandering, they arrived at the center of the city, where the Green Temple was located. Jekier had originally thought that the Green Temple, the capital building of the city, was a large and magnificent palace. However, It was only a bit larger than the other buildings around it. Also surprising, it looked like a normal house. More like an inn than a capital building of the largest kingdom in the world. However, when Jekier peaked inside of the door, he concluded that it lived up to its name.

What looked like a building on the outside, was actually an entrance room to the underground castle. The walls, covered in a layer of gold, reflected every movement of the people inside, and distorting their bodies.  The reflections of the lanterns on the walls hurt Jekier’s eyes from their brightness. He followed Nime inside reluctantly, as the bright light made it hard to see, but Nime walked in without so much as blinking. It became easier to see, as Jekier went down the many levels of this underground fortress. The walls were still paved with gold, but the deeper they went underground, the less torches there were to light thier way. When they had gone down what seemed like an unnessecary number of levels, Nime stopped and turned toward a door. Jekier followed suit to look toward a massive door, at least twenty feet tall. He looked for a doorknob, but there was none to be found. Nime looked as if he were listening to something, though Jekier heard nothing, and Nime then said, “Nime-Jan Adhad Dehore”. The door opened and Nime walked inside. Jekeir went to follow the Nime, but the closed rudley in his face, before Jekier could enter as well.

“Name yourself.” The a unmanned voice said in a deep and rumbling sound

“Jekier Owenson Mihar.” Jekier replied clearly

“Do not lie,” the door said, “I know who you are.”

“My name is Jekier Owenson Mihar. That was the name given to me at birth.” Jekier stated, “I do not lie.”

“Very well, I will let you in since I know who you are, but do not hold your name back from me again.” the door said, then swung open.

Jekier wondered for a moment what the door meant, as he knew that his name was Jekier Owenson Mihar, but he left the thought behind, for in front of him sat the High Green Man.


The End

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