There were no maps. No one was sure of what lied behind the large stone walls. The quaint forested village had been sustaining its usual pleasantness until the confusions and unknown anomalies of life took place, one night, in the town of Dalvar.
A storm brewed fiercely, bearing more rain than he had ever seen. The dark, stygian clouds congregated in menacing fashion. Staying inside seemed safe enough; yet the next day, when going outside to fetch water from the river as usual, someone was yelling from the market. The woman, or at least it sounded like a woman, was complaining about how her house was invaded by a strange man. The only things she could recall about him were his piercing purple eyes and a large golden stick with branches. As he filled the bucket, he overheard the woman wailing on that the man asked her where “it” was, “Where is it? Answer me will you, where is it?” She recalled, also adding she had almost fainted until he left, saying “The king will hear about this you know. May the skies have mercy upon you! Upon you all!” Addressing the crowd, she said she didn’t, and still does not know what “it” was that he was talking about and feared that he brought the storm, as it began shortly after his visit, assailing into the early morning and ceasing around sunrise.
Though he was getting on in seasons , Asmer was familiar with the younger people in his village of Dalvar. He recognized the frantic woman to be Jala, who sold home grown tomatoes at her very own stall at the village market. As the crowd around her dissipated, with comments questioning of her sanity, Asmer drew near to the woman. “Are you well, Jala? It is a frightening event you have endured!” Jala, shedding tears of embarrassment over the villagers’ parting words said softly, “Oh… why did I even bother to say anything! They all think I’m insane! I should have kept my mouth closed and pretended as though nothing happened!”
Asmer, in an attempt to comfort her, said, “Do not worry Jala! I believe you.” Surprised, she replied, “You do? Thank you, Elder! Even if I do live alone, and even if some think it strange for me to do nothing but slave over tomatoes all day, and that the sun may have maddened me or something , I know that I saw him as clearly as I see you, Elder!” Asmer took delight in her feisty reply and her returning vigor by chuckling, “I am glad that you are sure. Yet, your story troubles me. No one in this village has purple eyes, nor has a stick with branches that we know of that is not brown!” Jala replied, more solemn than before, “I know. I fear that he came from somewhere beyond our quiet town. Plus, I think that storm was his doing. It was clear all day until he left.” As she said this, she began to cough. Noting this, the Elder said, “Peace on your soul! Again I ask you, are you well Jala?”
Jala, again surprised, noted her cough and said, “I… I thought so. I mean, I was fine a few moments ago, but now… now I feel so ill, as if…” and before she...