Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Jahrra's Journal: Something's Up

Last time, Jahrra learned about some of the constellations above Oescienne.  This week, while Jahrra is studying with Master Hroombra, she notices something is troubling him.
-J.E. Johnson
Something's Up

Dear Diary,

Yesterday I was too tired to write to you.  I stayed up so late with Master Hroombra!  The meteor shower was the best thing in the world though, but by the time I woke up the next morning it was almost lunch time!  Pada and Nida came and picked me up and we went through Nuun Esse on the way home.  I waved to the butcher as usual and a woman selling flowers threw one to me.  It was pale yellow with lots of petals and left golden dust on my nose.
But that was yesterday.  I went back to Master Hroombra's today to work on my writing.  He says my writing is one of my best attributes (whatever an attribute is) but it must be something good because he was smiling.  He left me to practice my G's (one of my favorite letters because the big one and small one are different shapes and it can make two different sounds, "guh" and "juh") and went to his big desk in the small room in the front of the Castle Guard Ruin to read his letters.  Master Hroombra is always getting letters.  From who I cannot tell.  When I looked up from my small g's he didn't look so happy anymore.  He no longer smiled but frowned, all his wrinkles curving downwards.  His eyes moved quickly over the words on the paper and he took a deep breath.
Although he didn't say anything, I knew something was wrong.  You know how sometimes you aren't told about bad news, or grown-ups hide it from you?  Well, do you know how sometimes you can just feel that something has gone wrong?  That is how I felt, sitting by the great, empty fireplace practicing my G's.  I hope that whatever it is it will get fixed soon.  I don't like to see Master Hroombra sad.


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Want to read more about Jahrra and her adventures?  Download The Legend of Oescienne - The Finding, the first book in the Oescienne series, for FREE from Amazon.com

Friday, February 13, 2015

Valentine's Day Interview with the Characters from Caelihn!

Hello Readers!  I have been insanely busy this past week getting ready for the launch of Caelihn - A Novel of the Otherworld!  It will soon be available in ebook format from most places where ebooks are sold, and you can now order the paperback edition from Amazon.com.  In order to celebrate the next chapter in the Otherworld Series, and since it is almost February 14th, I sat down with the characters from Caelihn and asked them some questions about what they would like to do with their significant other for Valentine's Day.  Here are the questions and their answers.  I hope you enjoy and feel free to comment and ask your own questions as well!
-J.E. Johnson

Special Valentine's Day Interview with the Characters from Caelihn - A Novel of the Otherworld

1.       What is your opinion on the Valentine’s Day holiday?
-     Meghan – It’s okay.  I really never was a big fan of Valentine’s Day, but it’s a little bit different when you have someone to celebrate it with.
-       Cade – I don’t know much about this holiday since it is a mortal world invention.  Meghan will have to fill me in. 
-       Robyn – I think it’s just another way to get people to buy stuff.  I mean, it was fun and all when I was a kid and we got to exchange cards in school, but not anymore.  If you’ve got someone to celebrate a relationship with, you don’t need one day out of the year to do it.  You can show your appreciation for your significant other in little ways throughout the year.
-      Devlin – I’m with Cade.  I don’t know much about it, only that it’s a day set aside to do something special with the person you love.
2.       If you were to take one of your readers on a Valentine’s Day date, where would you go and why?
-          Meghan – In the mortal world, I would treat them to a night out in the old Arroyo Grande Village.  There is a lot to do there and it’s nice just walking around and hanging out in the small park by the swinging bridge.
-          Cade – If it was possible to take them to the Otherworld, I would take them to Luathara Castle.  We would enjoy a candlelit dinner on the terrace (if it wasn’t raining) and then a walk through the gardens or through the woods nearby.
-       Robyn – I’d probably ask them where they’d like to go first, then decide from there.  Skydiving might be pretty awesome. 
-          Devlin – If we were in Eile, I would take them out in a small boat on Lake Ohll.  We’d paddle out to one of the islands and have dinner by a campfire and watch the stars come out.
3.       What do you look for in a partner?
-          Meghan – someone with a kind soul who appreciates the little things in life.  He would also have to be compassionate and fight for what he believes in.
-      Cade – Integrity, loyalty to loved ones, strength of spirit and mind, compassion and probably the most important: an open mind about many things.
-          Robyn – I look for a guy with an adventurous spirit and a passionate soul.  I’ve been told I can be somewhat prickly at times (though I don’t know why anyone would think such a thing), so someone who can look past my sarcasm and tough-girl attitude and see the real Robyn is a winner in my book.  Oh, and it wouldn’t hurt if he was hot.
-          Devlin – I look for a fierce heart and a passionate mind in my mate.  I admire people who continue to persevere even in the face of adversity.
4.       In your opinion, what is the best way to show someone you love them?
-     Meghan – With your actions.  People aren’t always honest with their words, and sometimes it’s hard to find the right thing to say, but if you pay attention, you can usually tell if someone loves you by how they treat you and act around you.
-       Cade – Do what you need to do to make them happy and safe.  Sometimes that means sacrifice on your part, but that’s what loving someone is about: being selfless for that one person you care for the most.
-          Robyn – Be there for them when it’s tough, even if that means something as easy as being a shoulder to cry on or knowing when to give them space to work things out on their own.
-       Devlin – Sometimes it’s the little things you do to let them know they are appreciated.  Leaving small gifts or laughing at their jokes (even if they aren’t all that funny).
5.       What would you like to do with your significant other this Valentine’s Day?
-          Meghan – I would just love to spend time with Cade without being interrupted by some crazy evil thing wreaking havoc in Luathara or anywhere else in Eile.  One day of not having to deal with the Morrigan’s aftermath.
-          Cade – I’m with Meghan on this one.  Maybe even take a day trip into the mortal world and do some normal, mortal world thing humans do on Valentine’s Day.  Go out to dinner in a restaurant or go see a movie or walk on the beach.  Some peace and quiet with the one I love would be much appreciated.
-         Robyn – I like Cade’s idea of going back to the mortal world for the day.  Devlin and I could go for a hike in the hills surrounding San Luis Obispo and then maybe get something to eat at one of my favorite restaurants or visit the Green Tea Leaf and see how everyone is doing.  Then, we could go see another movie (maybe I’ll let Devlin pick this time).
-          Devlin – I don’t care, as long as I get to spend time with Robyn.
6.       Stay in or go out?
-          Meghan – I’m a stay in kind of girl.
-          Cade – This all depends on what we’d be doing, but I’m leaning towards staying in.
-          Robyn – I think a double date with Meghan and Cade back in the mortal world would be a blast.
-          Devlin – Maybe go camp out in one of the hidden corners of the Weald for the night. 
7.       Flowers or chocolate?
-          Meghan – I would appreciate either.
-       Cade – You mean what I would get for Meghan?  Probably both, and maybe something else from Kellston, like some artwork for her small study in Luathara Castle.
-          Robyn – Both!  Duh!
-          Devlin – Would it be unmanly of me to admit I wouldn’t mind getting some flowers from Robyn?  And maybe some chocolate for the two of us to share after dinner.
8.       Finally, if you could get anything for your Valentine, what would it be?
-         Meghan – Cade has already given me so much, I couldn’t possibly think of what I could give him that would make up for everything.  Well, there is ONE thing, but it’s going to take more than just me to make that happen …
-         Cade – I would like to find Meghan’s father, if he is still alive in Fomor.  I know that she regrets not knowing him, even though she doesn’t speak about it.  Of course, this would mean convincing Danua to tell me more about him, but I feel it is a sore subject with her as well.
-       Robyn – If it was in my power, I would talk Danua into giving Devlin Diarnan Castle.  Since I don’t think that will be happening, I’d like to find some bitterberry bushes to plant in our garden in the Weald since they are his favorite.
-         Devlin – I would find Robyn’s family in Eile and do everything in my power to make sure they do not shun her the way her family in the mortal world did.  I would also like to find the Daramorr and his sister and make it so they can never hurt Robyn again. 
Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this interview!  You can still pre-order the ebook edition of Caelihn - A Novel of the Otherworld from Amazon.com, Barnesandnoble.comiTunes.com and Smashwords.com.  It will be released on February 14th, 2015.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Jahrra's Journal: A Lesson by Starlight

Greetings readers!  Time for a new journal entry.  Last time, Jahrra's dragon mentor Hroombramantu showed her a field guide of plants and animals of Oescienne.  In the book, she got to see what a boarlaque really looks like.  This week, Jahrra writes about a lesson under the stars of Oescienne.

A Lesson by Starlight

Dear Journal, 

It is hard to stay awake, I'm so tired!  But Master Hroombra is teaching me about the stars tonight.  Oh, I'm so excited!  Right now I'm sitting by the fire in the Castle Guard Ruin (and can you believe it, Nida and Pada are letting me stay here for the night!), but soon we'll go outside to watch a meteor shower.  He says that it's like watching magic sparks streak through the air, and that sometimes the sparks are blue and red and yellow.  I want to go outside right now, but Master Hroombra says we must wait.  I hate waiting!  The sky is all dark, like the ink in my pen clouding up water, and the crickets are chirping in the wood, it should be time to go!  But no, we must wait.  Adults always want to wait.  Until then I'll write in my journal and watch the stars come out through the doorway.

There's one right now.  Master Hroombra says it is called Rhian and it is part of a constellation called Echainn and Echnia.  They are the Horses he says, and that the other star I see, just to the left and above Rhian, is Epohra.  He was about to tell me the story of Echainn and Echnia but a meteor just streaked across the sky.  Oh! It is fiery yellow, just like he said.  I'll have to ask him about the stars later, because he's grabbing the old quilt and we're going to watch the fire fall from the sky!

- Jahrra

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Want to read more about Jahrra and her adventures?  Download The Legend of Oescienne - The Finding, the first book in the Oescienne series, for FREE from Amazon.com

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Saturday Shorts: The Legend of Oescienne Part One - Extra Credit Opportunity

Hello Readers!  Last month I brought you a series of scenes told from Aiden Elam's (The Otherworld Series) point of view.  This month I'm switching things up and working my way back into the world of Ethoes with a series of scenes told from The Legend of Oescienne - The Awakening.  These scenes are 'extras' - activities Jahrra and her friends take part in during the timeline of the story, but not mentioned in the book.  Once again, this has not been professionally edited, so you might stumble upon the occasional typo.  Thanks for understanding and happy reading!
-J.E. Johnson

Part One: Extra Credit Opportunity

The young warrior climbed down from his horse and approached the cavern with caution. He had tracked the boarlaque this far and he could feel his skin prickle with anticipation. Dropping the reins to let the horse flee if trouble arose, he drew his sword from its scabbard and took slow, careful steps toward the cave entrance.

This monster he hunted wasn't any normal boarlaque.  The beasts were terrifying enough as it was, what with their curved, sharp claws strong enough to rip open the trunk of a fallen tree and teeth that could crush bone.  Their shoulders stood above six feet and they attacked without mercy.  The boarlaque young Allion sought, however, was far worse.  Tainted with cursed, evil magic, the monster had killed all those who hunted it.  But Allion was determined to succeed.  Taking in one last breath of the icy mountain air, he stepped into the cave and became plunged into darkness.
"Alright class," Professor Anthar's voice called out over the silent students.  "If you haven't turned in your exam, please do so now."

Jahrra fought the urge to groan and reluctantly closed her book, running her hand fondly over the intricately worked leather cover.  She had finished her test twenty minutes ago and after a swift last check to make sure she had answered all the questions correctly, she'd brought the parchment up to  Dathian, Anthar's assistant.  The studious elf had barely noticed her as he took the paper blindly, tucking it behind the other early finishers he had started perusing through.

Jahrra hadn't been offended by her friend's obliviousness to her presence.  She had been eager to return to her desk and pull out the latest volume she'd found stowed in the large book shelf back home.  Well, it wasn't really her home but her guardian, Jaax's, estate above the city.  She had stumbled upon the display of books one day when she had needed to speak with her dragon warden about something.  It was one of the few times she had entered his private study, and when the Tanaan dragon had caught her staring at the case of manuscripts, he had given one of his rare cheerful smiles and told her she could help herself to any of the books she found there.  She had wasted no time taking him up on his offer, finding one volume after the other, unable to put any of them down.  The books held tales of danger, mystery, adventure and even some light romance, which Jahrra found herself enjoying but couldn't understand why Jaax would own them.  Perhaps they had come as part of a set at some point in time.  Regardless, she had read them with a voracious appetite, always ready to start a new book a week or less after finishing the one before it.

The novel she was reading now, The Hero's Quest, was about a young man around her age who had taken it upon himself to hunt down a cursed beast in order to protect the people in his village.  She immediately liked the story because like her, Allion was an orphan with humble beginnings.  Jahrra was only a few chapters in, and already the hero was about to encounter the beast.  Something told her, some voice in the back of her mind, that there was more to the curse than the author was willing to tell at this point.  Jahrra felt her nerves tingle with curiosity and her fingers itched to crack the book open once again, but all the tests were almost turned in and Professor Anthar was strict about reading whenever a lesson was underway or when he or Dathian was addressing the class about something.

As her teacher waited for the last of the parchments to trickle in, Jahrra distracted herself by casting her eyes around the room.  She was only one of two other students who had bothered to bring a book with them.

Most of her classmates had returned to their desks after handing in their exams to stare out the window or to lean back and shut their eyes for a moment.  Senton, one of Jahrra's friends from her first days attending the University in Lidien, sat just behind her.  His head was thrown back and his arms were crossed loosely over his chest.  He was also fast asleep with his mouth hanging open, his breath starting to catch just enough in the beginning stages of a snoring session.  She fought against the smile tugging at her lips and cast her attention onto her other friend, Torrell.  The Resai girl sat next to her, her eyes, which had been glazed over in abject boredom, now glared with impatience at the two students in the front row who were furiously trying to scribble in some final words on their exams.

Jahrra only shook her head and waved the small novel in front of Torrell's face.  The dark-haired girl sneered at her in slight irritation.

"You wouldn't be so bored if you brought a book with you," Jahrra said smugly.

"Reading is boring," Torrell quipped.

Jahrra only shook her head in disbelief.  "I don't know how anyone can think that.  Maybe you're reading the wrong books."

Torrell only sniffed, holding out one hand to examine her fingernails.  She sighed, clearly not wanting to discuss literature any further.  "Our sparring practice is destroying my skin."

Jahrra leaned over to see what she was talking about but could find no evidence of damage.  She suspected the girl just needed something to complain about, since Jahrra had put her in a bad mood by bringing up reading as a hobby one might enjoy in their free time.

Before she could comment on Torrell's lack of broken nails or unsightly calluses, their teacher spoke up again.

“Before you all leave today, I wanted to make a quick announcement.  At the back of the classroom I have posted many extra credit opportunities for those of you in dire need,” Anthar proclaimed with a glint to his eye and a wave of his hand toward the corner of the room where he posted general information about the class.

Several students turned in their seats to view the wall he indicated, Jahrra included.  Half a dozen or so new pieces of parchment hung with the diagrams and charts that had been there the week before.

“Torrell!” Jahrra hissed, kicking one of the legs of the other girl’s chair.  Torrell, who was showing no interest in what their instructor had been saying, shot Jahrra a vicious look.

“Let’s see what Professor Anthar has posted on the way out today.”

Torrell rolled her eyes and tucked a few stray curls behind her ear.  “Jahrra, you hardly need extra credit.  You probably have the highest grade in the class.”

“Maybe,” Jahrra whispered back, “you on the other hand …”

She let her voice trail off and Torrell made a face at her.  Jahrra turned in her chair.  “How about you, Senton?”

The blond boy jerked awake from his nap and blinked bleary eyes at Jahrra.  "What?" he asked.

Jahrra sighed.  "Anthar has posted extra credit opportunities.  Want to go check it out?"
He shrugged, his sandy hair falling into his eyes.  “Sure.  It doesn’t hurt to look.”

Torrell snorted and smirked.  “You two do realize that any extra credit assignment would have to be done outside of class time, don't you?”

Jahrra smiled.  “Yes, Torrell, I’m very much aware of that.”

As their teacher gave a few last words and wrapped up class, Jahrra tried to catch the eye of the elf sitting at the large desk in the front of the room.  She stood and looped the strap of her bag over one shoulder and waved.  Only then did Dathian notice she was trying to get his attention.

Dathian blinked behind his glasses and nodded once.  He was busy scratching something onto a piece of parchment.  He quickly finished and rolled the paper up, tying it with a string before passing it off to Professor Anthar.  The centaur nodded his thanks and promptly placed the scroll into one of the saddle bags draped over his back.

Jahrra didn’t find it odd that she had a centaur for a professor.  She was in Lidien, after all, one of the most diverse cities in all of Ethoes.  At least, that is what Jaax had told her.  She may have been skeptical at first, but after living in this city for several weeks, she was now inclined to believe it.  What she found comical, however, was the fact that Anthar used saddlebags.

His students had asked him about it once and he had merely smiled and shrugged.  “Why shouldn’t I use them?”

The student who had brought up the question, a tall, dark-haired Resai elf, had replied, “I don’t know.  You see them on horses and people usually fill them with all kinds of things.  Basically, the horse is made to carry around their master’s junk.”

The class as a whole had nodded in agreement on that one, but Professor Anthar had only shaken his head and said, “But if it is my own stuff I’m carrying around, I’m not being forced to do anything, am I?”

And that response opened up a long-winded discussion about the history of centaur rights in Ethoes.  Jahrra learned that day in class that centaurs were once considered a lesser species than the different factions of elves, dragons, dwarves and other intelligent beings in Ethoes.  Before the rise of the Crimson King, the tyrant monarch who resided in the east and the very person Jahrra would one day have to face, centaurs had just overcome a great hurdle keeping them from breaking free of old prejudices.  Unfortunately, the tyrant's rise to power stalled their social progress and in many places, centaurs were still considered lesser beings.  But not, to Jahrra's relief, in Lidien.

Jahrra shook her head and returned to the present.  Dathian was finishing up whatever he needed to discuss with Anthar and Torrell and Senton were standing patiently waiting for Jahrra.

“Come on,” she said, pushing through the small crowd that had lined up for the door.  “Let’s see what the extra credit is.”

Senton followed her without questions, but Torrell was another story.  She dragged her feet and huffed her slight irritation.  Jahrra knew it was mostly for show.  When she had first met Torrell, she had thought the other girl hated her.  Turned out, she was just very blunt and straight forward with her feelings.  When Torrell had spotted Jahrra sparring in the park, she had challenged her to a fight.  As soon as she learned that Jahrra was no pushover, she had immediately extended her friendship.  The two of them had been good friends ever since.

“There are at least ten different options up here!” Senton proclaimed, waving his hand to indicate the many pieces of parchment tacked to the wall.

Unlike Torrell, Senton was much less brusque in his manner.  He had befriended Jahrra the moment he saw her.  He had stuck by her like an annoying, forlorn puppy.  At first, she was uncomfortable with his immediate determination to be her companion, that is, until she realized that was just Senton’s personality.  He was a very outgoing person and Jahrra happened to be the first person he thought had a friendly demeanor about her.

“Really?  Ten choices for extra credit?” Jahrra piped, still trying to move past her straggling classmates as she stepped closer to Senton.

By the time she made it through, Dathian had joined them.  The elf was taller than all of them and had long dark hair he kept tied back.  Jahrra could remember back to the first day of class with Anthar, when their centaur teacher had been running late and Dathian, his assistant, had had to make excuses for him.  He had been standoffish at first, keeping the students at a distance in order to execute his role as a teacher’s aide properly.  It wasn’t until one of the Coalition meetings that Jahrra discovered Dathian’s true identity.

The Coalition of Ethoes kept its headquarters in Lidien.  Jahrra’s guardian was its leader, and Jahrra, being the human girl the Oracles had prophesied to come and end the reign of the dreaded Crimson King in the east, had to attend many of the boring meetings.  It was during one of those meetings that she found out that not only was Dathian a pure-blooded elf from Dhonoara Valley, but that he was also one of the king’s sons.

Both of them had been shocked to see each other there.  Later, Jahrra found out from the elf himself that he always feared people outside the Coalition would learn about his royal family.  He preferred the anonymity of being a simple scholar.  Jahrra understood completely, vowing not to give away his secret to anyone and happy to include him among her close-knit group of new friends.

"Looks like they all have to do with going on walks and observing the local wildlife," Senton said rather blandly, pressing a finger to his chin.

"Let me see," Jahrra insisted, pushing her way closer to the wall.

Senton stepped out of the way with a perturbed look.  He, too, thought Jahrra was a little too excited about the prospect of extra credit.

"Oh!  This looks like fun!"  She jabbed her finger at one of the papers tacked over an older announcement about term papers that were due several weeks ago.

Torrell narrowed her eyes and began reading out loud.  "Extra Credit Opportunity Number Four," she said, "Go on a hike with some friends along one of the trails outside of Lidien and observe the wildlife you find there.  You must record observations about at least three plants or animals unfamiliar to you, and write a page about your findings."

She groaned upon finishing.  "A page!?  Not only are you trying to encourage me to waste one of my days off by traipsing down some muddy trail, but I'm going to have to write about it later?"

Dathian smiled, his eyes glinting behind his spectacles.  "It is only a page, Torrell.  And it's worth twenty-five points.  Trust me, you could use the credit."

Torrell crossed her arms and snorted, but Jahrra could have sworn the color rose a little on her cheeks.  Trying not to laugh at her friend's expense, she took a breath and said, "Please, Torrell!  We can hike on one of the trails to the north west, right along the coast and still close to the city.  I bet there are some great cafes or taverns over there and I haven't really had a chance to see that side of the city.  Tell you what, lunch will be on me if you guys go with me."

Senton's pale eyes brightened and he perked up.  Lifting a hand, he said with a smile, "I'm in!"

Dathian gave Jahrra a perturbed look and grumbled, "I guess I'm in, too."

Jahrra winced a little.  She knew Jaax had asked Dathian to keep an eye on her for him, something that oftentimes annoyed her to no end.  Fortunately for her guardian, and the elf as well, she enjoyed Dathian's company.

"It's got to be better than the alternative," she muttered, and he nodded his agreement.  This would give him an excuse to get out of any Coalition meetings that might be taking place that day.

That only left one person.  Jahrra turned to eye her other friend.  She got the impression Torrell was trying very hard to be invisible.

"You don't have to do the extra credit if you don't want to," Jahrra pointed out.  "You can just come along for fun."

"Right!" Torrell breathed, "Wandering around in the woods is so much fun!"

"Oh, come on Torrell!  Jahrra's buying us lunch!"

Torrell turned her dark eyes on Senton.  "Is food the only thing you ever think about?"

Senton turned pink and lost a little bit of his bluster.  "Not always," he grumbled.

Torrell held up her hands.  "Alright, alright, I'll go.  I don't want to know what else Senton thinks about in his free time."

Dathian laughed out loud and Senton gave him a poisonous look.

"Great!" Jahrra chirped, ignoring them all.  "Is tomorrow good for everyone?  And where should we meet?"

"How about below the clock tower at nine in the morning?" Dathian offered.  "It's easy enough to find and it's closer to the northwest end of campus."

"Perfect."  Jahrra waited for everyone else to agree.

By the time the four of them had finished making their plans, the classroom was empty save for Anthar.  He was finishing up at his desk, gathering the last of his belongings and storing them away in his saddle bags.

"What are you four still doing here?" he asked on his way out of the small cabin.

"Jahrra was perusing the extra credit board," Dathian stated.

"Ah, very good!  Have you decided on anything?"

The centaur walked them out to the point where the path met up with the main part of campus.  As they walked, Jahrra told him which activity they planned on undertaking and where they were going.

"An excellent choice," he said with a smile.  "This is the perfect time of year to see lots of wildlife."

The group bid their farewells in front of Essyel Hall.  Dathian continued into the building with Anthar to attend a late Coalition meeting and Torrell and Senton had to go straight home that afternoon.  Feeling a bit forlorn, Jahrra made her way to the campus stables where she found her semequin, Phrym, waiting eagerly for her.  She fed him an apple from her bag and saddled him up.  On her way home, she imagined herself as the young Allion, riding off into the mountains, seeking adventure.

Only, I hope we don't encounter anything hazardous on our mission tomorrow, she thought.  Jahrra knew of the dangers that awaited her outside of Lidien, but wouldn't let that fear keep her from enjoying her time in the City of Light.  Thinking of venturing beyond the city walls made her think of Jaax.  Her paranoid guardian would definitely not like the idea of her stepping foot beyond the boundaries of Lidien, but there really was nowhere else Jahrra could go to see real wildlife.

We won't go far, she told herself, no more than a mile or two beyond the city.  I just won't tell him everything, that's all.

With that final thought, Jahrra encouraged Phrym to pick up the pace.  She needed to go home and get a pack ready for her big adventure.  Along the way, she tried not to think too much about her decision to keep information from Jaax, and she convinced herself that the little knot of unease in her stomach was simply due to the fact that she was excited for this trip and not because she was feeling guilty about being secretive with her dragon guardian.
Thank you for reading the first installment of this Legend of Oescienne Short Story!  Hopefully I'll have the next installment up soon.  In the meantime, discover the Legend of Oescienne with the first book in the series, The Finding.  The ebook is free on AmazonBarnes and NobleiTunesKobo and Smashwords!