Tristinia could hear her feet in the silence of the sandy cave. Light and shadows curved the walls and passages from the ravine above, serpentine and forbidding like the coloration twisted into the rock of reddish browns and golds. the silence wasn’t eerie but sacred. The ghosts presences of emptiness felt so ancient here that their voices were as silent as the rock faces. An unknown history. Undocumented by drawings as other cultures would have, only written in the intriguing silence that drew her onward. The man of faith, ?, and ? followed her. She stopped. There was a dip in the path downward. “Stay here” she said. She ducked down and continued. Something throbbed within her heart, like she belonged here. Her steps carried her quickly and confidently toward the slivered light beam she saw ahead.
The passage opened its mouth to its end: a vaulted cave with one thin passageway from the heavens. In its warm friendly glow was a massive boulder and in the boulder was stuck a sword whose hilt was covered in the long dried and crusted shells of some sea creatures that had lived. Tristinia looked around the cave from her place in front of the boulder. In the shadows were skeletons in the rock walls. Giant skeletons of people, larger than her. She approached one of them, looking upward at it, in wonderment, knowing it would give her no answers. She walked around, passing her hand gently over the walls and their bones whose story she would never know and yet she knew, deep down somehow she was of their lineage.
The stories that the man of faith told her of the flood that had covered the world and left 8 people on a large ship, the days that boasted in his book of the men of renown, when angelic beings and humans produced. Resolve and knowledge and strength pulsed into her it seemed from the very air as her heart beat seemed to drum in her very ears. The silence seemed to encourage her, draw her to the sword, picking her, choosing her, righting her to its task that awaited her in her land so far away. She climbed the worn poor steps in the rock to the top, placing her hands on the hilt. The shells crunched and crumbled in her grip as her hands dribbled blood from the scratches. She strained, pulling it upward, wiggling it slightly. Tristinia clenched her teeth and her groan of determination echoed in the chamber.
? &? jumped up but the man of faith ordered them, “Sit.” They looked at one another, then at the path downward further in and obeyed hesitantly, hands to their weapons. Tristinia heard the friction of metal scraping the stone as it ascended its grave. The metal had deep sea things crusted latticed over it but she was able to see the metal was made of something ancient and strong, shiny and sharp and blessed. Alone on-looked by her long gone and silent voiceless ancestry in a place of her answered questions, she bellowed a warriors cry that rose from the inner most parts of her beating heart to her lungs and out her mouth, terrible and tremendous, royal that repelled death by its very reverberations. “AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!”
It echoed around the walls and down passages and ascended the single shaft where light was permitted. She raised the sword aloft, admiring it in the light. She saw her reflection and knew…the bravery inside her heart and confidence that came from above the sky was the answer to her land and her people. This sword was merely a blessed vessel, a symbol of her right, of her lineage, a bridge to where she came from and where she would go. She took it in both her hands to feel the weight and swung it in several moves ? had taught her. She wondered what metal it was borne of momentarily. She listened to its wind as she danced with it. She descended the boulder steps out of the cave and back up the sloping way to where her friends waited, standing weapons ready and wary as they heard footsteps in the sand. Emerging from the dimness glinted a sword lattice crusted but undamaged as if it were made from stars from the heavens. and then Tristinia.
She lay there imagining what it would be like to be beside some special man, pale and peaceful, breathing softly, eyes closed, head resting on her hands as she lay on her side facing him. His eyes drinking in her slender curves and soft skin as her long hair tumbled down and over her. Maybe he would stroke her cheek with the back of his hand.