2006-09-01: Excerpt from Jordan's Tale

Global Edition

Excerpt from Jordan's Tale

Author: Lyra the Bard Published: September 1, 2006

As recorded by Lyra the Bard:

“And then?” I pressed in, eager to hear.

“Aye lass, that’s when it happened, it did,” Jordan replied. The crowd had hushed, some leaning in, as he took a swig of ale and then punctuated his last words with a hard thump as he set down the mug.

“It wailed, aye, like a banshee! Flames were rushing towards me and I knew I was a dead man.”

He eyed us all for a moment, and leaned back. “’Twas though time herself stood still, that awful keening," he paused, "but low... low and dark.”

“That’s when you were all blown back, eh?” called a fellow to the side, having already heard the first rendition of the tale.

Jordan jumped up, surprising a few. “Ha! Not I!" He thumped his chest and gazed over their heads. "But quite a few, yes. It was a fury I will never forget, ‘twas then that I saw it.”

He set his hands down on the table and leaned forward a bit, staring intently at the throng. “Hundreds of them. Must’ve been hundreds. That pillar shattered like glass! That’s when I saw it, a chunk the size of my fist heading straight for me!”

A collective gasp broke out abruptly as he snatched suddenly at his tunic.

“Right here! It hit me right here, and nary a mark!”

The tense moment exploded into a flurry of questions, all asking the same thing.

“But how?”

Jordan took another drink from his mug, still standing, and continued.

“’Tis hard to believe, but I tell you true. Those rocks were like ghosts! Passed through me, my friends, our beasts, the walls, e’en the ceiling!”

“But ye picked some up, did ye not!” someone asked loudly.

He sat down and clasped his hands with a grin.

“Aye, we did indeed find some littered about on the ground. By then they’d become hard to the touch.”

“Well," the tavernkeeper interjected, "how many were there?”

“A few dozen, I suppose...”

Some nodded slowly and I figured they wanted to see the small stones for themselves. Jordan was still grinning when he spoke again, challenging the crowd, “I say again, a few dozen we found there, yet that pillar was a man’s height and more!”

I saw the sudden realization dawning and more than one lip parted to ask the burgeoning question, but Jordan himself beat us to it.

“Where be the rest?” he wondered aloud.