“There! Look at that!” Grace tugged on Ken’s sleeve.
“Huh?” Ken shook his head, “You want me… to look outside? That’s… a long way down.”
“Yeah whatever, just look!”
Ken got on his knees, and peeked out the window. “Oh, is that smoke?”
“It is! Let’s go.”
“Hah. Good luck finding your boyfriend lady. I’m gonna wait here for Brian to come back.”
“Tch. Fine, suit yourself.”
The morning light flowed in through the cave entrance, though the fire also provided some light. “So, when do you think he’s going to wake up?” Sam asked.
Adrian shrugged, “I don’t know. We hadn’t slept in more than a day, and then he was on full throttle the whole time. Maybe uh… copying memories made him more tired.”
“Uuugh.” Brian sat up, his face sallow. “I’m up. I guess.”
Tonya spoke up, “… Sir Brian.”
“Ah… good… morning?” Brian shook his head.
Tonya said more, but then stopped.
“Umm… no more… magic.” Brian said slowly.
Tonya reached forward and offered her hand, but Brian only took it for a moment. “I must rest first. We’ll eat then head toward your village.” Then, he let her hand drop.
Seeing him look toward the fire, Sam spoke up, “There’s roasted mushroom. They’re… alright.”
Adrian shrugged, “Much better than when they’re cold.”
The next few minutes were spent mostly in silence, only interrupted by the sounds of chewing. Brian occasionally stopped and looked down at the mushrooms he held for a few moments before continuing to eat them.
“So, what do we do now?” Adrian asked.
Brian looked around. “Uh, I guess… we go to Tonya’s village.”
“You guess? Weren’t you pretty confident dragging us everywhere yesterday?” Adrian raised an eyebrow.
“Was I?” Brian closed his eyes for a few moments, “I guess so. Some of my memories are fuzzy.” He shrugged in an exaggerated manner, “Whatever. We probably should get to the village. Tonya’s family and the rest of the village is probably very worried… and maybe the people at the clinic are worried about us.”
Adrian hissed as he took in a quick breath of air, “Oh. Yeah… we should probably get back as soon as we can.”
Brian briefly grabbed Tonya’s wrist, “We’re heading toward your village now.”
It only took a few hours of walking to reach Tonya’s village, but the three from the North Star Clinic could honestly say they had enough walking. Too much, even. They had walked all day starting before dawn and the only rest they had was when they stopped for the night… or rather when Brian collapsed. They also hadn’t had much food, though the mushrooms filled their stomachs enough to make the trip. Even so, they were all exhausted and out of their last bit of energy when they arrived at the village.
“I’ve seen sheds bigger than some of these houses,” Adrian said.
“Whoa, that’s rude man.” Sam shook his head, “they do look pretty rickety though.”
“Relax, I wouldn’t have said anything if they could understand…” Adrian shook his head, “It’s true, too. They’re not… much.”
Once they were in sight, Tonya quickened her steps. When someone saw her, they called out… and soon, there were dozens of people, all swarming around and talking at the same time. Brian, Adrian, and Sam all stopped some way back from the crowd.
“What are they saying?” Sam asked.
Brian shrugged. “The usual. Oh, we were so worried about you, are you okay, what happened… stuff like that.”
After a few minutes a small group, including Tonya, came up to the three people from the clinic. They started talking, and Brian quickly extended his hand.
An elderly man stepped forward and took it. “I forgot. You are a wizard who is using magic to speak our language, correct?”
Brian nodded. “Something like that.”
“Our town would like to thank you for rescuing Tonya. We don’t really have any money to reward you…”
Brian shook his head, “We just helped her because I found out she was in danger.”
“That is very kind of you. Tonya said she thought you were from Griyna, but you weren’t? Where are you from?”
“Ah, we are from… very far away.”
“I see. Are you perhaps on your way there? There are no wizards that I know of here in Lethax, and certainly not in our village of Everton.”
“Hey, Brian, what is he saying? What are you saying?” Adrian asked. Brian explained, and Adrian shook his head, “I’m not sure if we should say much. We don’t really have any authority…”
Brian shrugged, “I’m the only one who can talk to them though. I think we have to tell them about North Star anyway, because having a building suddenly appear in their valley… they’ll find out about it eventually. I figure we could start diplomatic relations as early as possible…”
“Find, but what happens when they figure out you’re not a wizard?”
“Am I not a wizard? These guys believe in magic and know nothing about it. Maybe I am. Besides, I can say it was a poor translation or something.”
“Fine, whatever. Try not to make any promises about anything though.”
It was evening when the three of them, plus the elder of Everton arrived back at North Star Mental Clinic. The village was conveniently or perhaps sensibly located near the same stream that passed by the clinic. As they arrived at the gates, the elder’s eyes widened.
“Adrian!” The sound of a woman’s voice came from off to the side.
Adrian turned to Brian, “I have to go deal with this. Good luck man.”
Brian walked up to the gate, where he saw the head of security. “Hi, Chief Fox. We’re back. We even brought someone who should probably talk with Dr. Crocetti.”
Chief Fox whistled. “Well, I certainly wasn’t expecting this. It was crazy of you to go out like that, kid.” He slightly grimaced at his inappropriate choice of words. “Anyway, Dr. Crocetti really will want to see you. It’s… bad to just run off like that. Everyone was worried, and we didn’t need any more of that…” He looked over the three people at the gate. “And somebody new… Welcome!”
Brian translated, after which the chief bowed in response and said something. “He says he is glad to be received by…” Brian covertly held the elder’s wrist, “Umm… such great wiz… wise people such as dwell in this villa.”
Chief Fox opened the gate and escorted them to see Dr. Crocetti, and likely the rest of the doctors as well. Hopefully, somebody would be able to figure out what had happened… or at least where they were. Though, Brian could have told them the answer to that. They were in Lethax, technically… but that wasn’t the answer anyone wanted.