LABOR AND LABORATORY
Devon: (searching in a box made of wood. He sits on the ground in his lab deep in the undergrounds below the palace of Meru. The room is dark, cold and wet - perfect for Devon's needs. Nobody really wants to be here or to stay for longer. Undisturbed and in peace, Devon can forge new plans and try out magic spells here.) Hmmm... Xayide, please share some light with me... get the torch over there! (pointing to the wall.)
Xayide: (stands under the wall but she is too small to reach the torch.) Meeh... (thinks for a moment then just creates a small light on the palm of her hand.)
Devon: (with more light, he can now look better inside his chest.) That is much better, thank… what? (looks up and gazes at her hand.) Where is… how… Hmmmm. Interesting! You are very talented… and I wanted to teach you this spell in a few weeks.
Xayide: I observed how you did that.
Devon: (watches her with admiration.) Good girl. In that case, we’ll pass our lessons more quickly and effective, as I thought! (pats her cheek.) Well, good… I hope, you can create this magic fire long enough for me to find what I’m searching for. (his head dives back into the chest. With snout and hands, he crawls deep inside the box and gets out again.) It is not here…
Xayide: What are you looking for dad? (keeps the light on tip of index finger.)
Devon: I am searching for a glass filled with dragon teeth. Not long ago, a young black dragon flew over Meru. This is quite rare, even for these lands since the Dragonlands are not far away. But even a black dragon… (whistles.) well, I acted quickly and ordered our archers to shoot him. And after seconds, we got the beast! Small beast, but who cares… (snickers.) Dragons are well known for their magic potential… and intelligence, though. They won’t share this with me, unfortunately… so, I need to come up with other measures. (kicks the box.) Well, I am looking for a small glass filled with teeth… there is even a description on it. Hmmmm... let's look on these shelves there, okay? Get on my shoulders. (bows before her.)
Xayide: (her eyes at the desk where stands the jar with teeth.) You really have a mess here. (points at the desk.)
Devon: No, these are Reptilian teeth! (smiles.) I will explain you the difference later… Reptilian teeth need jar to be good. Dragon teeth need blood! Come, get on my shoulders… (lifts her up with not much effort. She is young and light.) Okay… I wished, the old ladder we got down here would carry my weight… or would at least be high enough for you to reach the shelves. But that crappy thing is smaller then me… good… (takes her to the shelves.) Can you see something there? It was always too dark to find my stuff again… yes, it is a mess.
Xayide: (brigs light in front of her.) Eeeeew! No... but something died here...(pushes it and it falls from the shelf on the floor and splashes with disgusting sound.) Gross.
Devon: (kicks the corps away.) Hmmmm… I wonder, how I was able to put it on a high shelf in the first place! (laughs.) Come, it is okay. (puts her down.) Hmmmm… there is one last option… there is a wardrobe over there! Let’s seek inside this one…
Xayide: Maybe, it climbed there itself... (looks at the wardrobe.) You better do it yourself...
Devon: You’re afraid of more rotten stuff, huh? (pats her and snickers.) Okay, no problem. Just help me with lights again… good! (searches in the wardrobe. There are glasses, clothing made of old leather, scrolls, mirrors and gems. Finally, Devon yells in happiness and got the glass he searched for. He closes the wardrobe.) That is it! (places the glass on his table and sits down before it. Xayide at his side.) Okay, I got a nice task now… you can make fine powder from this, will ya? (gives her mortar and cup.)
Xayide: Can I? (puts cup on the table and gets herself a stool so she can reach more over the table than she does.) What this is going to be? (drops teeth into mortar.)
Devon: Hehehehe… this my little girl will be quite useful for our soldiers most likely, for me after all! We are going to make an “invisibility potion”! (grins.)
Xayide: (starts to smash the teeth with mortar but they are hard and difficult to brake.) And what for the invisibility… (gets irritated with the teeth and pouts then covers the opening with hands.) Can I make it quicker?
Devon: Well, if you like. (looks inside a spell book.)
Xayide: Thanks... (she pouts looking with angry eyes on the mortar and something explodes under her hands and smoke flies between her fingers.) Oopsie…
Devon: (yells.) Awww, not so harsh!!! (breathes and coughs.) Well... you are indeed talented... but we need to teach ya how to focus your powers!
Xayide: I mean Oopsie because I broke the mortar... (takes hands of the thing and shows the crack on the side.) I'm sorry...
Devon: Well, it’s okay my dear. (checks the remaining powder .) It is perfect, after all! Now, we can add the blood from the glass as well… and some of this mixture… (gives another bad smelling potion to it and mumbles some words. Then, he stops.) Sorry, I wanted to teach ya… (smiles.) I forgot… I always mumble my spells in private… but you shall learn them, as well. Okay, here we go… it is like this: Dhar-gor eek sshaath hiss viehss thrak-luhr! Come, repeat it… don’t worry, it won’t work right now, anyway! Since we need one last drop of salt in the end to make it work. But it is good to practice the spell now! Dhar-gor eek sshaath hiss viehss thrak-luhr! Slowly… word by word…
Xayide: Sounds like a name of the disease. (slightly puts tongue outside to get that hissing accent.) Dhar-gor eek sshaath hiss viehss thrak-luhr…
Devon: Well… as your mother’s daughter, I’d have expected something like “why do I need to memorize or say these horrible stupid words”, but… (pats her gently.) I see, you have the same sarcasm and bite like her! (smiles.) That was very good! Now, lets try it together while I give the missing item to it… (while they say the spell again, Devon drops some salt over the cup. The potion begins to glow and dust and smoke rises to the sky; after a short plopping sound, the fluid gets clear.) It is done! Now… where shall we try this out now…
Devon: Ha ha... (softly punches her.) You are a bright one! No, something solid...
Xayide: (gives him a punch in forearm.) Looks solid enough... no wonder, it had years to become like stone.
Devon: (grins.) You are not proposing, that I drop this potion over myself?? No way! (looks around and gets a human skull from the table.) Here... (places the skull on a chair and drops potion over it. They are waiting.) Hmmmm... needs some time, I suppose.
Xayide: You ever did that before? (looks at the skull when nothing is happening.)
Devon: Of course, stupidy! (smiles, but also feels some tension, that the experiment would not work.) It just... maybe, we... awwwww! (then, the skull slowly gets transparent and vanishes completely.) Wow! Ooookay, it is done. (pats over the skull.) Very good... my hand stays visible. The potion is perfect! Though it works slow... never mind.
Xayide: (pokes place where skull disappeared.) Now you can put it in a corridor and wait when somebody tips over.
Devon: This idea is typical you! You'd even make pieces of soap or nails invisible for this matter, huh??
Xayide: And what for?
Devon: To bother and annoy others, of course. Or to torture them, which I cannot really reject... I used to do such jokes on my folks, as well. (grins and puts skull away.) It will get visible in a few minutes again, after all.
Xayide: It is funnier to make stools explode…
Devon: And this brings me to our next lesson! I have seen, how you create this nice small fire flame over your hand... this is very good, so far. But we will learn another step, today! (raises his arms, if he wants to make a speech.) With you being so talented and clearly underestimated here, I shall teach you how to focus this fire bolt!
Xayide: You mean, shoot with it?
Devon: Exactly! In case, you cannot do this by now as well... (shakes his head and sighs.) There is almost no teaching you, when you learn everything by watching... but hey, it is great. Less work for me (laughs.) and you learn it more by yourself. Well, shall we give it a try?
Xayide: (giggles.) Mum shows me how to observe. And not only...hey, I tried to shoot but it disappears after short while no matter how big this is... I only burned a bush.
Devon: Well, this is a start isn't it? You are very talented, that is for sure. Okay, lets try it... (gets on his knees to be at her height. Then, he takes her right hand and points her finger to the skull, which appeared again.) Think about, what you used to make this flame... feel the power, but channel it. You don't let it out, but let it grow...
Xayide: (creates small fireball which grew pretty fast.) What now?
Devon: Now… (concentrates like her.) focus the skull. By now, you only created a flame which flies above your hand… now, you need to think no, you need to wish that the flame reaches even the skull over there. Think… feel… know! You WANT the fire flame to reach the skull at your will… not right now, just by command. Let it grow before you let it free…
Xayide: (shifts her eyes and she makes a kinda putty face expression and sends the flaming sphere right at the skull not to mention burned desk.)
Devon: (speechless, but does not show it.) Uhhhmm... yes... alright, that was faster then I thought. (goes to the desk and cleans the ashes and mess.) Hey, very good my darling! (lifts her up and cuddles.) You are a master, soon! I am proud.
Xayide: I am? (embraces his neck.)
Devon: Maybe, next time we blow something alive up! (smiles evil and snickers.) A moving target is more difficult anyway. Okay… and your reward for the lesson today: What do you want me to get you from the candy shop? I am on my way to the town now, and I know you don’t like the stuff here at the palace. Want me to get your something?
Xayide: (bounces slightly.) Sugar bugs! You know I love them.
Devon: Okay. (sits her down again.) It will be done. (smiles and gets her hand.) Come on, I take your to your mom now. The lab is too dangerous for you by now… and you are too dangerous for the lab! (laughs and closes the lab.)
Xayide: Mom was hurt again... I saw her crying...
Devon: Awww... who ever dares to hurt her, will have to compete with us, right?
Xayide: Guess, she is sick...
Devon: Well, we shall see it ourselves. Anyway, I have never seen her sick... well, curious. (goes up the corridors.)
Xayide: (follows him and in some moment jumps and grabs on his tail and attaches herself to it with all fours.)
Devon: (he only feels her weight, because his tail is moving in an unusual way. Anyway, he can keep her up with almost no effort.) Hey! What... you are not a climbing animal, what do you think?? (laughs and lifts his tail up and down.) Hmmm... you like this, huh?
Devon: Alright... (walks along the corridor with her swinging around and at his tail. He walks to Syrana's chambers, as he can see two guards standing before the door.) Let me inside. I want to speak with Lady Syrana!
Guard: Yes, of course Lord Devon... but I must warn you, Lady Syrana does not want to be disturbed. She said by "nobody"!!
Devon: (gets close to him. Devon is one head taller then the guard.) Do I look like "nobody"?
Guard: (frightened.) No... not... of course not! You... may enter... (knocks and opens the door.) It was just my order to tell you...
Xayide: (hangs on his tail with back down and tilts her head.)
Devon: Good. Come on, Xayide... lets see, how's mommy! (smiles and enters. He can see Syrana sitting on her bed with her back to his view. She is barely moving; some papers and clothing are laying all around. It looks like, if she wanted to take care of some writing stuff, but canceled then. Devon gets closer and stops before the bed.) Hello, my queen... (soft voice.)
Syrana: I thought I told the guard I don't want to be disturbed. (turns head slightly.)
Xayide: (falls on the floor like a cat then climbs on the bed.) Even by me?
Syrana: (smirks in forced way.) No, come on. (she just made an inviting gesture with head and she didn't turn around.)
Xayide: (walks over the bed and rested herself on Syrana’s knees.) You know what? Daddy showed me how to make invisibility potion!
Devon: (gets closer to Syrana and sits himself right next to her. The side of his body is merely touching her back. He strokes one shoulder leaf and sighs a bit. He smiles and looks proud at Xayide.) Oh, yes... she is very, very talented! A great, cute and still dangerous little girl... just like the mother. She will become powerful and invincible - like you...
Syrana: (has kimono-like cloth with very long sleeves which are totally covering her hands which she keeps close to her chest.) Just don't spoil her too much... (it was visible that she wanted to reach and pat Xayide but somehow resigned.)
Devon: So... smoothes her more and gets closer. He sits right next to her now and cuddles his body at hers.) Tell me then... what is bothering you? Our daughter told me something of an illness... (feels her face.) You are not hot and... (looks closer.) I cannot see any signs of typical illness here. Hmmm... but I sense, there is something wrong here... (stops smiling.) Seriously, I am worried. I never saw you so crushed... okay, maybe back in the day, when your cake didn't want to grow high and brown... (grins and wants to cheer Syrana up.)
Syrana: I am alright. (she speaks through tightened teeth.) You don't have to be worried...
Devon: (closes one eye.) You know... being a good liar takes many centuries, I can tell! And you are far too young for that... you can be honest to me. Really...
Syrana: No, Devon it's really nothing…
Xayide: (decides to get of Syrana's knees and accidentally bonks her chest with the head.)
Devon: (sighs.) Well… I see, we are not getting through here. (gets up and walks around.) By the way, I just wanted to inform you that within the last days I’ve mixed many healing potions for any use…
Syrana: Iieeeee!... (cried out in hissing way when Xayide hits her hands.)
Devon: What happened??? (turns quickly.)
Syrana: (leaps forward, keeping her hands tight her chest.)
Devon: (kneels before her and reaches out his hand to touch hers. But he stops and waits carefully before her body.) So... I was right, it IS something wrong with you. I really doubt that Xayide broke anything in your body... hell, you cried out! (looks very tense and worried.) What is it, please? Let me see…
Xayide: (gets off the bed and crouches in front of Syrana and puts her hands on her knees.) What happened?
Syrana: (shakes with her head.) It is so weak…
Devon: No way! You are not weak... and showing a weakness to your loved ones in not a weak sign, either! Of course, I'd never admit any weak spot to my enemies but... (stops talking.) What is hurting you? You don't have to prove any "strength" here... you are my queen, you know that. And I am worried!
Syrana: (was quiet for a moment then leaned and lays on her back, there are tears flowing from her eyes and she tightens her teeth.) My hands...
Devon: (sighs.) Come on… (he sits next to her again and grabs her body and slowly gets her up. He is holding her upper body with his strong arm and rests her head along his biceps. Then, he softly gets her hands into his from behind. First, she wants the resist but wit closed teeth, she lets Devon touch her. He feels over her fingers gently, as she is trembling in clear pain. His fingers move slowly over hers. He looks very carefully at her.) I see… it is your fingers, which pain you. Hmmmm… I might be able, to find a cure for this. Most likely, some potion made for crippled soldiers could help…
Syrana: Gods cursed me….
Devon: (goes with one finger over her cheeks and strokes her chin between thump and fingers. He looks at her.) How can the gods curse something, who could be someone of their own? So much beauty and spirit... I suppose, they are just jealous, to have lost one of their kind to the mortal world!
Syrana: (smirks a bit painfully and nuzzles to his hand.)
Xayide: Mom is a goddess?
Devon: (smiles, grabs Xayide with his right arm and pulls her to his side. With Syrana at his left hip, and Xayide at his right he laughs gently.) Yeah... she really is. For me, anyway. And we don't allow our goddess to be in pain or trouble, do we? (blinks.)
Xayide: (shakes with head.) No!!! (cuddles to his side.)
Syrana: Thank you... (leans against him trying to keep her hands away and sighs with a whimper.) You really think you can do something with it?
Devon: (to Xayide.) Well, little one... we really need to find a potion to make her happy and painless, don't we? I suppose, your skills will be a great help for me to find us a good recipe against mommy's pains. (to Syrana.) Yes, I do think so! Like I said, I had similar incidents with some soldiers... but they've been attacked in the battle. That is the only difference... in your case, it might be an error which you got since birth. This is much more complicated... but it only increases my motivation to find a cure!!
Syrana: It is not from birth... (bites her lip.) It started a little before I met you...
Devon: Hmm... okay. Tell me... since when did your pain accelerated?
Syrana: Pain is from few years, but now it became so big that I cannot immune myself on it (sniffles*.) and earlier... I was crippled during a fight, I received serious hit in the head... I woken up after few weeks and from that time my hands are weak like kittens, I couldn’t' even hold a sword anymore...
Devon: We are together for so many years by now and I never... I never caught a hint about your troubles. Hey... (holds her very tight and pats her back.) you don't need to hide anything. Even if this is scratching your ego... don't be so proud - at least not here! With me and our daughter. Your men don't need to know this, I agree. But we are not to be excluded... (looks in her eyes.) Alright, I don't accuse you. I would have acted the same, I am sure... so!! (gets up.) I suppose, my laboratory expects another task to be done right now! We shall find a way to scare your troubles away... (smiles at Syrana and Xayide.)
Syrana: I was raised like that... I cannot help it... (leans on the matraze as he stands up.) I feel ashamed but relieved in same way...
Xayide: (embraces Syrana from the back and rests her head on shoulder.)
Devon: You don't need to be ashamed... not anymore! I will find a cure for you, I promise. And even if we will find a way to minimize your pain... that'd be a good start, anyway.
Syrana: (looks up at him and smirks even if probably hands hurt her a lot.) I love you...
Devon: (kisses her.) I love you too, my queen. (goes out.) Come with me, Xayide.
Xayide: (licks Syrana’s cheek and runs after him.)