[Astalor] Chapter 2 – Their Secrets

She had no choice but to, as they began to head down the cavern into a high ceiling hallway, with curious stares and sneers greeting them along the way.

They were met at the end of the hall with a presence she was not expecting. The man was dual toned in hair, both bright blonde and black, with large black wings. Though his presence was bright, it gave off a stern feeling. and his eyes were not very welcoming at all. “This is her, Reskal?” the dual hair addressed the man bringing her. she could feel other eyes on her too.

The man nodded. “Yes, Hyon..” He handed him her papers, as she bowed a bit.

He shifted through them quickly then promptly burned them. “Were you followed?’ His smile faded.”Who else knows you are here?”

Reskal spoke up. “The two current reps, not followed otherwise.”

She looked up at the man in wonder, questioning what she got herself into, as he spoke to her directly. “You really an appraiser or can you not speak?”

She frowned. “I can speak just fine, but you seemed pre-occupied..”

He smirked slightly at this. “Good.. at least you’re not mute. Useless the last one was, we had that man disposed of. so don’t waste our time.”

She shivered a bit but asked. “What exactly do you need me to appraise?”

Hyon ‘s smirk curved downward into a serious expression. “If you can, you’ll be saving one project of ours. If not, you’ll be thrown off the cliff, the same as the last. Got that?”

She nodded quickly. “Got it.”

Hyon gave a nod. “Then take her to them.. we’ll test your skills on something easy first. Make sure we weren’t sent a fake.” Reskal motioned for her to follow as Hyon opened a door behind himself and stepped inside. Around them were gathered those curious enough to watch the trial. Voices of people whispered among the group calmly as they watched her carefully. There was a tense but hesitant air among the group. Curiosity seemed to be high but so was their animosity against her.

Much to her dismay, a dark-haired man was shoved to her feet, wounded but alive. The worst of his injuries was a large gash around his eye, which seemed to have been cut and drained. it seemed they wanted to see her heal that first. She kneeled down beside him, reaching out towards the eye as she wasted no time getting to work. Her once golden eyes began to glow blue, vibrantly, as a similar glow formed beneath her hands, as the eye began to repair itself at her touch.

The crowd gasped looking on in awe. some began to speak among themselves. “She is healing him?”

“That’s incredible! he was nearly gone!” said another.

“Her powers are strong, she can’t be allowed to go to the western side!” several agreed.

She finished her work quickly, with the damage to the man’s eye restored and the gash minimalized to a small scar. His body was cleared of the bruising as he sat up and reskal moved toward him to check. Hyon asked the man. “How do you feel?”

The man nodded. “I don’t feel any of the pain as before, and I can see out of my eye again.”

A voice came from above appearing in the light above the group. “What is the meaning of this?” From there, a golden armored winged knight looked down at her and the others. “Why is this thing on holy grounds?”

A voice of an onlooker gasped as he looked at the knight. “It’s the captain of the Grand Guard!”

The knight rose their blade towards her and spoke. “speak now, Raita of the Grand Guard commands it! Whose responsible for this?”

She shivered a little, looking towards the Knight. But just as she opened her mouth to speak up, Hyon answered him. “I am. You know darn well we’ve been seeking a healer and this one is the real deal, regardless that she is one of them.”

The knight focused their attention on him. “You are suggesting we need this thing among us? Hyon, may I remind you we are at war with these very beings. To invite them into our fold is to invite chaos among the lands we hold itself. Already there are traitors among our own willing to aid them.” The knight swung their blade a bit as the crowd shivered all will be found and judged. “This act only feeds deception!”

Hyon shook his head. “All the better to use her now, before she can be used against us! Think of it, fewer losses for our side and when she’s no longer useful, we just dispose of her!”

The knight shook their head. “This stains the honor of our own fallen. The wounded will die eventually. Acceptance must be given. Our losses may be heavy but they will only push us towards unity. Even if many die the few who remain will become stronger with each loss. The Grand Guard will make sure of it.”

A voice spoke up. “You think your Grand Guard can protect you against everything, don’t you? Are your powers that strong knight? To save even those on the verge of death far from your glorious reach?”

The knight looked to the crowd and with a sterner voice spoke. “Who said that! I command thee to come forward!”