A violent and sudden appearance, young weather witch, and hidden valley. Sounds like fun!
The Violent Beginning
The light pitter-patter of a spring shower filled the air with fresh vibrant life. A light mist rolled across thick green umbrella like oaks. Dancing and prancing a breeze played with the leaves of the closest such tree before returning to brush its horse mounted master. Look what I found it seemed to say. Then it rushed off to play some more.
Tris was actually going to miss this particular breeze; it had been her constant companion since she had left home three weeks ago.
“You will have to let it go” she told herself.
She was going study academic magic at Lightsbridge to learn normal everyday magic. Magic over wind and lightning, as well as tides and groundshakes was not normal everyday magic. Being a weather mage wasn’t a very good way to make a living unless you used it for purposes’ of war. That was a definite no for Tris. She had used her magic to defend her first real home at Winding Circle from pirates when she was fourteen. The nightmares she had from that still haunted her four years later. So it was off to Lightsbridge to learn charms and spells and make a real living.
With that in mind Trisanna steered her caramel mare off the narrow trail into a meadow of tall waving grass. She tied the horse up to a nearby tree and began to wade through the dew ridden grass.
When she was a good distance away she sat down and began to untie a braid of her flaming red hair. This braid was where she stored the lightning magic she collected every time there was a storm. Different braids held different nature magic’s that she had collected. Combing out the lightning with her hands she stopped to watch the lightning, beautiful and free, jump around in her hands. Then she sent them out to form a large circle around herself. She did this every time she let magic go; it protected everything outside the circle.
Removing her spectacles she was hit by an onslaught of pictures and colors. The spectacles were spelled to filter out the pictures she had learned to see on the wind. Each picture was a real thing the wind had brushed past. Another braid was quickly undone, releasing wind that she promptly sent out to scout the area. She needed to see if there was anyone nearby. What she was planning to do would be very disturbing to anyone who came across her.
If there was one thing Tris didn’t need it was a rumor of her presence. Awe inspiring and legendary best described her reputation as well as her three adopted siblings. With it oftentimes came fear from the general population and contempt from other mages who though she was arrogant when she revealed even a small portion of what she could do. Her name was known by most everyone within a thousand miles. All she wanted to do was learn a living in peace. That was why Niko was going to introduce her under a different name when she met up with him in Karang.
Swirling around her, eager to show her what they had seen, her winds returned. Watching carefully she was soon satisfied that she was far and wide alone. Then, one by one, she carefully let them go free. Some of the bigger hurricane winds she had to break up into smaller pieces.
“Bye” Tris called to them, very much like a mother after her departing children.
Five exhausting hours later Tris’s red hair hung more freely than it had in several years and all but the lightning that circled her was gone. Surprised at how naked her head felt without all that stored power, she impulsively gathered up the lightning circle and braided it into two braids framing her face. Later she would be very grateful she had.
The rain had stopped while she was working. Trying to stand she almost fell from sitting so long. Ash from the grass that had been within her circle stood out against the vibrant green surroundings.
Before Tris had time to push her spectacles back on, a devastating explosion ripped through the calm serenity of the meadow. In the eternal moment before the ensuing blast wave reached her she saw the picture of a magnificent weeping willow on a fleeing wind. Then black darkness descended upon her mind and she was swept away into unconsciousness.
For a long while Tris dreamed of falling down an endless black pit. Then as if she had been yanked out by an elastic band she found herself instantly standing near the weeping willow she had seen before losing consciousness. Its graceful arms reached the ground around itself, a natural tent that masked its ancient trunk.
The branches parted in front of her as little arms pushed them apart. A beautiful little girl clothed in white power motioned for her to come under the willows serene embrace. Tris obliged.
Purpose radiated from the girl as she pointed at a figure sprawled on the soft ground. “Wake up” she said earnestly. “You need to help save him.” One look at his pale face burned it permanently into her mind. Then she found herself instantly awake as if she had never lost consciousness. Those purposeful words came to her once more in the young girl’s high soprano voice “You need to save him”.
Without a single thought to the contrary Trisanna stood and sent for every wind within her considerable reach. She showed them the vivid image of his face imprinted in her mind. Motioning in the general direction that the blast had come from, she told them “Find him.” And off they went to diligently search for that beautiful face.
Slightly dizzy and more than a little bruised, Tris rested for a brief second as she thought about what she had just done. She had shown the wind something with her mind. Tris had never done that before.
Not one to sit still for long when something had to be done she retrieved her spooked mare from where she had tied it up and set out in the same direction she had sent her willing winds. It wasn’t long before one of them found him and reported. The breeze she had been playing with earlier that day was the one that found him. With determination settling in her stormy grey eyes, Tris followed it at a brisk gallop. Soon the tree littered ground became so treacherous that she had to slow to a slow trot. In places she had to make wide detours to avoid jumbled piles of downed trees and the deep scars in the ground from the many uprooted giants.
Eventually she reached the colossal willow. Recognizing it immediately she dismounted, quickly parting its long sweeping branches. There, lying awkwardly on the moist ground was the boy.
Trisanna had no power to heal, but she had learned what you were supposed to do in situations like this. Finding him unresponsive and barely breathing she couldn’t help but wonder if he had something to do with that explosion.
The effort it took to get him on her waiting horse was enormous. She first had to pry a strange metal box from his clenched arms. This took so long that Tris later decided to lash it to her saddlebags. It must be important if he wouldn’t let go of it as weak as he was.
Getting him up on the horse by herself was a useless prospect, so Tris used her power over the earth to slowly lift him up high enough and shoved him onto the brown mares back from there. She was grateful that her horse didn’t mind her unsettling display of her power over earth. She didn’t need a terrified horse on her tired hands.
Tris barely made it onto her horse herself; it took more energy to move the settled earth when she didn’t have earthquake magic stored away for use.
She knew that there was a lot of ground to cover before she reached the next city. “Why couldn’t this have happened closer to civilization” she grumbled as she weaved her horse back out of the maze of destruction.
When Tris finally found her way to the narrow road it was dark. Unable to stop out of fear of losing the boy in the night, she drove herself to such a point of exhaustion that she didn’t notice when her horse strayed from the path. Hour after hour, mile after mile she mindlessly pushed her horse forward. Eventually the horse stopped; it couldn’t take one more step. Tris was sound asleep in the saddle.
Two cloaked figures approached. One was a short stocky woman, the other a tall man.
“Pull the boy off the horse and set him on the ground here, I need to work on him immediately or we will lose him.” The woman was clearly in charge because the man obeyed. “Then take the girl back to the house.”
Apparently the man had a problem with this particular order because he protested. “But you said to never bring anyone into the valley!”
“I have my reasons son, do as I say.” She pulled her hands out of some deerskin gloves and placed them firmly against the boy’s chest.
Seeing his mother serious for once, he found himself seriously disgruntled. Nevertheless he lifted Tris from the saddle to carry her to the tan horse he had waiting behind a bush up ahead.
Trisanna stirred and opened her eyes. “Save him” she croaked deliriously. “She said I have to help save him.” This seemed to mean something to the healer woman, but she hid that fact from her son.
“You are safe now.” He assured her. “My mother is an amazing healer.”
Tris seemed to understand what he had said. She mumbled “Save him” once more, before falling into a deep, peaceful slumber.