Chapter 2: Biowl Monastery

"One two, one two, one two…" The voice echoed through the great hall. Many monks were moving along in beat with the barking of the instructor. Suddenly out of the corner of the hall a man appeared through a door, running over to the monk standing on a platform in the center of the room, who was being addressed as the instructor by other monks in the room.
"Sir, there's someone here to see you" he yelled

"One two one two, hold!" The instructor shouted, turning to the man who was now jumping up on the platform. The two whispered to each other for a couple of minutes before he turned back to the crowd in front of him. "Dismissed!" he said loudly over the whispers of everyone in the room, then disappeared with the man.

Sabyn, for one, was pleased with the early dismissal. As much as he liked training, it was harsh. His favorite place to be wasn't the training floor, though, it was the library, which is where he was headed now. Rushing past others, through corridors, and past rooms, he came upon the library and entered. Rows of books lined the rooms, the shelves reaching well above the ground. Ladders sat leaning against some of the walls, being the only way to reach most of the books.

Everything you could ever want to know could be found in here, but most monks spent as much time as they could training their muscles, not their mind. Quickly Sabyn rushed up a ladder and found the book he was looking for. Carefully he tucked the book under his arm and climbed back down the ladder. Taking a seat at a table, he began to read. He was well into the book when unexpectedly a hand rested lightly on his shoulder.

"It's always easy to find you, you're always here"
Sabyn turned to see who it was.
"Master T'Gar!" Quickly Sabyn stood up and bowed to show his respect.
"Sit, sit m'boy" the old man replied, motioning him to sit back down in his chair. "When it is just us you don't have to be so formal" he said, smiling at Sabyn.
"T'Gar" he quickly corrected.
"Alright…" Sabyn smiled. "T'Gar, what brings you here to see me?"

"You're an intelligent boy, right?"
"I'd like to think so, though it's not for me to say."
"What's this?" T'Gar asked, holding up a black leaf that Sabyn quickly recognized.
"That's Zedil, a very common weed that's highly poisonous unless mixed with Zidel"
"Correct! And what's this?" T'Gar quickly held up another leaf with his other hand, this one was white though, but other then the color it was almost like a common leaf off any old tree.
"Zidel… Master, where did you get that? It's extremely rare!"

The master quickly shot back a look. Sabyn knew the look, it meant that T'Gar wanted to finish speaking instead of going off topic. It also meant that the question would answer itself later.
"Alright, now tell me what happens when you mix the two."
Sabyn looked at T'Gar, then answered "The special juice in the Zidel will cancel out the poison of the Zedil and will create a very rare drink that's rumored to taste heavenly."
"Correct again! You are smart m'boy!" T'Gar gave a big smile. "So what are you thinking now?"
"I'm thinking either we have an important guest coming or you're up to no good." Sabyn looked over at T'Gar, then smiled. "Or maybe even both."

"Smart and perceptive! I'm going to have to keep my eye on you!" T'Gar winked and tapped Sabyn's forehead. "Tomorrow we are being visited by the T'Forgde, some of their generals I might add. We will be hosting them supper, and each master is to bring his best student."
"And what does this have to do with me?"
The old man grinned, "You're the one I'm bringing. Their drinks will be spiked with sleeping potion, afterwards I'll need your help to carry out a ceremony that will wipe us from their memory, so they will never bother us again."
"But why me?" Sabyn had a stunned look on his face. "Surely there are others who are far more qualified than I."
"Believe it or not m'boy, it's rare for anyone around here to know Zedil has an oppressor not just an antidote, not to mention what it looks like, that was not luck as you might have called it." T'Gar patted Sabyn's knee "Go get some sleep, it's getting late and you'll need to be as awake as you can be." The old man grinned as he walked out of the library.

Sabyn sat there in silence, contemplating what had just happened. Chosen by his master for such a thing, he didn't know whether it was an honor or punishment. He had never been in front of such high ranking people before, let alone be invited to supper with them. Slowly rising to his feet, he realized he had no choice but to attend. He would most likely not see his master until the supper, and then there would be not enough time to find someone else. Shuffling his feet, he slowly made his way out of the library. "I may as well go to bed and put these troubles behind me for now, there's no sense worrying about them now that there's no going back," He told himself as he walked through empty halls towards the sleeping area. "Tomorrow will come and tomorrow will go just like any other day."

After a short walk, he finally reached the sleeping area, a large flat room with straw mats laid on the floor, though each mat was a bit different from each users personal touches. Some longer, some shorter, some with some color, others with fancy decors, so no one would take someone else's by accident. Many were already resting from the day's weary activities. Picking up his pace a little, he found his mat in a corner of the room, distinguished by a single clipped corner and a weaved picture of a book. Curling up on it he took a look around, then closed his eyes, wishing tomorrow wouldn't come.

(back to Page Three of Chapter One)

Abel Tavern Tales


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