As the traveler dreamed of what might lay ahead of him a mist rolled in covering him and his campsite. The fire flared up lighting the area driving back the mist clearing the air above the sleeping boy. At the edge of the fire light the tall figure stood looking at the sleeping boy. Dressed in a long blue coat the figure moved closer to the fire the mist separating ahead of them and sat across from him. Reaching into its coat and pulled out a small box, placing it on the ground. Leaning over the fire the figure rubbed its hands together as if trying to get warm. It was several minutes before the figure moved again, almost as if it was stuck hunched over the fire and unable to straighten up. When the figure finally did move again, it picked up the box again before hunching back over the fire and lifting the cover. The figure reached three fingers into the small box and grabbed at some of its contents. Pulling its hand from the box the figure brought the hand fingers first toward its face, as if to study the amount between the fingers. A second later the figure threw the hand toward the fire, opening their fingers and released the powder that he had taken from the box into the fire. The fire flared once then died down before turning from orange-red to a pure white. The brilliant white light of the flames began to grow higher lighting up the entire campsite as if it were day. The face of the figure finally caught the light enough to show his short beard and wrinkled face. The face had seen better years, what was once a handsome face was now hidden beneath old age and wrinkles left by time and struggles. Opening his coat the man stood and went over to the sleeping boy, bending down he touched his face with the fingers that had held the powder from box. Running his well calloused and crooked fingers over the contour of the young face, the old man knelt down and took the boys hand.
Opening his eyes the boy sat up and looked into the eyes of the old man that knelt next to his grass bed.
“Father,” the boy whispered, “what are you doing here?”
“You were dreaming of me,” he began.
“Dreams are for children,” the traveler smiled back.
“Dreams are for everyone, even those that leave home.”
“Are you mad that I have left home?” the boy asked. “Is this why you come all the way out here?”
“I knew that you would leave home from the day you were born.”
“You are not angry then?”
“No,” shaking his head as he spoke, his father chuckled. “I could no more be angry with you for leaving than I could be at your mother for having given birth to you.”
“Then you do not come to get me to return home?”
“No, I come because you are dreaming of me.”
“So you have told me,” the boy said as he stared into the fire. “Why was I dreaming of you, if I am meant to leave home? Why is it that I think you are angry with me? Why, if it is all not true? Why is it that I am meant to leave home and for what purpose.”
“So many questions,” his father began, “you still ask so many questions. There are things that I can not tell you, much of which you must learn for yourself, even more still that will be told to you. What has been kept from you has been done so for your own safety and those around you as well as my own. Everything will be reveled in its own time my son. Now that you are out of the house you can begin to learn of these things. You will be shown what lies ahead of you; they will come to you and tell you all that has been hidden from you, all that I have kept hidden to protect you.”
“I should be the one that is angry then I suppose.”
“If you think that it will serve you.”
The boy lowered his head and stared at the fire as if he could no longer look at his father.
“You will see many strange and new things on this journey of yours,” his father began. “You will meet many people, some will know who you are before you tell them, and others will know of you or have heard your name spoken in whispers. There are those that have been awaiting your arrival for more years than can be remembered by just one person in a single lifetime. I have had to allow you to grow up without the knowledge of your ancestors and destiny to protect you and myself as well. You now go out and among a world that is in the best of times harsh and unforgiving and at its worst; deadly. A friend has been sent to meet you, to help you prepare and train for what lies ahead. This friend is but the first of many that you can and will trust with your life. There is no need to test them, you will know each that you can trust when you meet them, their loyalty is a given. One that will be closest to you will never let you close enough to them. Their secrets are theirs to keep, just as your secrets are yours. This journey will take you many places and far from your home but there is one thing that you must always remember….”
His father jerked his head around to look over his shoulder as if he had heard a noise. Holding his hand up to his son he turned in the direction of where the sound came from, assuring himself that it was safe he turned back to his son.
“If there is only one thing you remember from our talk this night, remember this always,” the father said leaning close into his son. “When there comes a time when you believe all is lost. When you feel you have no strength to carry on and are faced with what can only be certain death. All you will need is to think of me and through me you will gain the strength needed, for I am with you always. I wish you good journey my son. I wait with your mother for your return.”
His father rose and walked away from his son. The mist closed back in on the campsite again engulfing it and his father, soon all that could be seen was the mist. The travelers’ fire continued to burn pure white for several minutes after his father disappeared.
“Make sure you leave nothing out,” he told the two as he passed them. He did nothing more to acknowledge their presence but somehow he knew they were there.
“We will do what we need to do, you can count on us as always,” said the taller of the two.
“We shall tell him everything,” the second added, “if there is time.”
The boys’ father reached into the mist grabbing the second by the front of their cloak, lifting them off their feet and pulling them to him.
“The two of you will do what you have been told to do, you have but one thing left in this life to do. I would suggest that you not waste any more time. You were to have been here many nights ago, he was to know of his heritage and ancestry before he left.”
“You seem to forget that you have not been honest with him either, you could have told him everything as well.”
“What I have done, is what I was supposed to do, I was to protect him, and to allow him to grow into what he is and to what he will become and nothing more yours was to teach him the rest.”
“He has been too sheltered, he is far from ready for what he is about to go through.”
“Then the two of you will have to be with him and show him what is needed until he is fully trained.”
“Dear brother we have too many things to do that are far more important than to watch over your son after once he has been told.”
“Then I suggest that you both do your job quickly, so that you can attend to your other things, do not cross me sister,” he said finally lowering the second figure, “you seem to forget who I am.”
“We can never forget,” said the other. “You always find a way to remind us.”
“There is nothing to worry about brother I will make sure that she does what is needed.”
“If either of you mess this up, I will make sure that you both pay for the mistake.”
They stood watching their brother disappear into the darkness before turning toward the sleeping boy.
“I am not so sure that he is ready for this.”
“Ready or not our brother would not hesitate to see out any threat that he has made toward us.”
“At least it is our other brother and we know what he can do.” the two shook their heads as if to keep themselves from thinking about what could happen to them.
The two slender figures dressed in long hooded cloaks seemed to float towards the fire past the point where their brother disappeared into the mist. They moved closer to the sleeping traveler before stopping just outside the ring of light that his fire created.
“I told you, we have no time to do this.”
“We have to make the time.”
“Look at that he just moved, he’s waking up.”
The two figures moved quickly back into the mist and darkness of the night. The first pulled on the others arm to move them even further from the sleeping boy.
“We certainly can not approach him when he is awake.”
“If I leave it up to you we just may have to.”
“Besides, it will not be long before he begins to learn on his own.”
“He will not learn what we have to teach him on his own, that is why we are supposed to tell him before he begins his training.”
“Us telling him is not going to help him learn to fight and survive.”
The first figure made a low huffing noise and disappeared into the heavy mist. The second smiled and followed.
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