The Restless Heart, The Promised Land

for Athras

POSTED: Thu May 16, 2019 2:09 pm

The sound came like drumbeats through the trees of the Miramichi Valley. The buckskin danced between the trees like a firelight wisp, her ebony tail flared like a banner behind her as her lithe legs beat the ground in delightful staccato. Mounted on top the mare was a red-haired coydog, hoisted above a queer saddle with an unusual pommel designed to be a rest for a large bird. However, with Lirael’s joyful pace, Sabriel would have no part in riding alongside her partner—the golden eagle had given up much earlier, flying off to join another eagle in the sky rather than stay for Lira’s joyride. Her dalliance with the wild male had not gone unnoticed, though Tamlin could hardly judge her for enjoying the company of the avian she had referred to as “very interesting,” for he had spent the majority of his time at camp tending to whatever needs a certain ivory wolf had come up with (assuming, of course, that his chores with Lirael and the rest of camp had been finished).

For Lira’s part, her haphazard ride was the result of a freedom hard-won: after arrival at their new camp, she had been instructed only to rest. When Tamlin had not been on foot, exploring in the employ of his High King and Queen, the Sunwarden had been massaging the horse’s muscles, brushing the tangles from her mane and tail, and bringing her a variety of treats to choose from. Though at first the buckskin had enjoyed the attention and relaxation, she had soon become more vibrant in her disapproval at her ‘captivity’ in camp, and today Tamlin had decided to let her run free. The result had been a scattered run through the wilderness, her pace variable as the horse had stretched her legs however she wanted until her chest heaved and a froth formed at her mouth. Without Tamlin’s instruction, she had turned her own body back to camp, as though realizing her escape from Caledonia had taken more from her than she had realized.

Nevertheless, Tamlin was pleased. Lirael had done well, her body healing with the passage of time, and soon she would be the marvelous horse she had been back in Caledonia. As her hooves came nearer to camp, the drumbeats slowed to a gentle bass, and when the large tent between the trees became visible he dismounted from the horse, all the while murmuring sweet nothings to her. They paused at one of the streams common to the Miramichi, and when they broke into camp Tamlin had been unable to resist glancing around for Fennore, but found her absent. Disappointed though he was, it did make it easier to focus on Lirael’s aftercare. He removed the saddle an accoutrements, brushing down the horse until she was silky and pleased, leaving her to rummage through the foliage for the tastiest bits.

His work done, Tamlin found himself unexpectedly without task. It had been some time since he’d had such free time—especially without Fennore to help her adjust camp to her liking—and so the golden man felt a bit lost. Neither Iomair nor Vodeva were there to assist, and so Tamlin walked past the tent, ruminating on what he’d like to do. In this process, he heard the sound of dagger striking wood, only to see a dark figure sitting on the outskirts of camp, whittling away. A smile crossed the Sunwarden’s face in recognition, and he called out a greeting as he advanced. “Lord Eryn! Good afternoon.”

WC: 588. Dated May 10th :)
New Caledonia
The Sunwarden
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Northern Tides