Chapter 3 : Cedical Basian
Scene 3 : Coming to Terms
Cedical was slowly coming back to the world of the aware. Just before she opened her green eyes she saw a river of blood flowing at the bottom of a purple-shadowed ravine. A voice echoed in her mind.
“Cedical, My child, wake nowww… You have far to goooo…”
Her eyelids fluttered open and she slowly sat up and surveyed the scene around her. The bodies of the Picts still aly where they had fallen, blood and gore had soaked into the earth. Crows and other scavengers had gathered around the corpses to claim their unearned prizes. She must have been unconscious for hours since the burning buildings were now just smoldering ruins. The place was empty of the living. The few surviving Celts had fled the area, probably to the bailey of the local chieftain or the village of Carn half a day’s walk towards the coast. She felt no malice towards them for her abandonment. She knew they believed her wyrd was cursed. Cedical agreed with them wholeheartedly as her mood became bleak. Fresh tears began to flow, etching rills in the bloody mud upon her cheeks as sobs wracked her slim form. She sat there in the mud, her legs splayed out before her as she gave in to her grief, her inconsolable sense of loss. Then she heard the voice in her head again, feeling chilled and yet strangely comforted by it.
“Cedical, My child, you have worked a wonder… The Picts shall never forget this dayyy…”
“A wonder? I murdered men with a cold heart! Without remorse!”, she screamed in her mind.
“Yesss… You have proven your mettle to Meeee… You are ready to begin your service…”
“Great Oghma, why me? What makes me so special?”
“My child, you are still alive… Only one other in our history accomplished what you have without joing his victimsss… And that was I…”
Cedical’s eyes widened with shocked realization.
“I wielded the Music of the Gods?”
“Yesss, My child, and yet you have so much yet to learn… So far yet to goooo…”
Something insider her hardened, grew cold. Something was lost and something else was found. Cedical’s expression took on a determined cast as she rose to her feet. She brushed as much of the mud from her clothes as she could as she took a deep cleansing breathe.
“Great Oghma, what do you wish of me?”
“For now, My child, you should head towards York. You shall meet your companions on the wayyyy…. Your purpose will become clear soon…”
Cedical slung her dulcimer over her sholder and strode east out of town towards the rising sun. Unbeknownst to her, two sets of eyes followed her progress, one pair of amber and the other pair of glowing red…