Part Three is here! Keep an eye for the final two chapters coming over the next couple of weeks. Quick update on me, I am busy working on my new series of books, The Gelder Warriors. Golon’s book will be first but everyone will have their own books. Including our pain-ridden Etan 🙂
After these stories for Etan, I will be diving fully into writing Golon’s book the blog will be on pause. But I will be working on the blog as well, look for updates in the new year.
Gelder Shorts: Chapter Two, Etan’s Hidden Pain Part 3
A loud banging from beneath me prompts me to open my eyes. I look down the long tunnel that I hold myself afloat within where I have been meditating here where nothing touches me but air. There, several thousand feet below me is the hot-headed fire master I have been waiting for.
“You know that it is considered quite impolite to request someone’s presence and then hide yourself away in this star-forsaken tunnel and show off your caeli powers?” Arsenio bellows upwards at me. “You are well and truly gifted in this power, no other can lift themselves so high with such control. There is no reason to keep boasting about it.”
His words open a deep wound inside that he will never see. I do not lock myself in this chamber and call upon my powers to show off. I do it for the emotions I feel when there is nothing around me but the very air that is so much a part of me. If I was on a planet or moon I would be in the clouds. Feeling true freedom. But never peace. Oh no, not that.
Peace and serenity are emotions that were stolen from me, by the one person who should have been there to give me such comforts. But alas, I am sentenced to a life of pain and misery while those around me think I am nothing but happy. It’s my curse, to hide my pain.
I begin to lower myself, allowing my powers to gently cradle me as I float down towards the irritated warrior beneath me. I affix a small, pleasant smile to my lips. Once I am back near the floor, I step down with one foot and release my powers completely. Allowing me to walk once more, my time of flight behind me for now.
“Ah, Arsenio. Thank you for coming.” I speak to him in a calm voice. The minuscule pleasure I gained from my flight is making me even more agreeable, even though I do not relish the topic I have come to speak to him about.
A grunt and an eye roll are all I receive in response. Very well, I expected nothing more.
“I requested to speak with you because there is a question I have been asking myself for a long time now, and I have not been able to come to a satisfying conclusion on my own.” I motion towards the door he came through, and we begin walking towards a comfortable lounge situated in a small room affixed to the base of this hollow tower. All caeli masters enjoy testing the control of their power, and often they will compete to see who can reach the highest peaks. This room’s function is for those who are competing to rest comfortably while they await their turn.
Once we enter, I motion for Arsenio to take a seat on the hovering ovals that are positioned to our right. With our intuitive technology, the discs remain dormant until sat upon. Then they will become whatever shape is needed to perform their desired function. Right now, they conform themselves in to comfortable chairs with tall backs and wide seats to accommodate our large frames.
“And what question is so complicated that you must seek me out to answer it for you?” Arsenio’s words are dripping with scorn. His feelings of disgust towards us, those he once loved like brothers, is more than apparent.
His dislike of me is something I can easily ignore, as it bothers me naught. But his blatant disregard for my king has resulted in the suffering of those I love before. Since the conversation with my king, I too have had doubts about Arsenio and his true intentions.
Not about if he will harm our soon to be queen, but if he will attempt to harm our king or my fellow brethren. With these thoughts heavy in my mind and heart, my easy-going façade drops easily. Being quickly replaced by a glare that in no way hides my rage.
“If I will have to kill you. That is my question.” I see the shock in his eyes, he tries to mask his reaction but it is there in a flicker of his eyes. “I will not allow harm to come to my king, my fellow warriors, or my queen. If anything you do hurts any of them in any way, I will not stand idly by. I will take the life you so willingly squander. So I ask you, am I going to have to kill you?”
I let the sincerity drip into my words, my tone heavy with deadly intent.
“Of all the warriors here, you are not the one I expected to have this conversation with,” Arsenio speaks slowly, the insult in his words poorly disguised.
I let my eyes harden, the easy smile dropping from my lips. “And why would that be, hmm?” I ask him with a dangerous growl in my words. “Because I am a caeli master and therefore so opposed to a confrontation that I am nothing but a weakling?”
Arsenio says nothing, but his eyes reveal his agreement with these words. I can feel the anger burn low in my gut, but it is in no danger of escaping. I have total control of my emotions. Which is not something this ignis master will ever possess.
I raise my hand to my chin and study my companion with a face void of all expression. “Tell me, oh powerful one. Who is the better warrior? A warrior who is so capable of fully removing themselves from the temptation of emotion that he can strike down any foe who threatens those he protects no matter his own desires. Can kill anything and anyone for his king if that is what is needed. Regardless of personal feelings, a warrior who can hide his pain, or his rage, or his love so that he can fulfill his duty is a formidable weapon.” I pause to let my words sink in, for the meaning behind them to absorb into him. I am a warrior who will do anything required of me, and if it hurts, well I am more than capable of hiding it.
After I see his eyes darken with understanding, I continue. “But what of a warrior so ruled by emotions that he would turn against everything he was meant to protect in a fit of rage? Who could throw away every pledge he ever made, as if those pledges were garbage. Is this warrior even worth keeping around?”
Arsenio’s eyes burn, his rage building. “Careful now, fire master. We wouldn’t want me to have to kill you now would we?” Without breaking eye contact with him, I slowly begin funneling all the air out of the room. Something I do not require to function, but Arsenio does. He cannot die due to lack of oxygen but his body will shut down without it. And his powers would be useless here in a room with absolutely no oxygen.
His eyes begin to bulge, I wait until he is just on the verge of unconsciousness and then let the room fill with air once more. I add a not so gentle push of air to his back, causing him to fall to the floor.
I lean over him, and I affix my happy, pleasant smile to my face once.
“So Arsenio, as I have just proved I can defeat you. Easily in fact. I can render your power useless. I have not risen to this position, as the highest-ranking caeli master, because I am weak. I have done it because I have embraced who I am. You still battle with this. I can help you accept your lot in life. Or you can continue to wallow in self-pity and arrogance. The choice is yours, either way, I will have a smile on my face. It is up to you if I am grinning with you, or over your corpse.”
I turn and leave the lounge, whistling a merry tune all the way. Listening to the gasps of an asphyxiated warrior behind me.