The Amazons found themselves home, ranged around the low
central bonfire in the Village Square. Celosia rose to her
feet first, holding her hand out to Medea, who in turn
hauled Tern to her feet.
"Thank you, all," the Queen said. "Yakut
will feel better knowing our spirits are on guard in the
realm above. I know I do. Remember to spend a few moments
in meditation this evening, praising your guide for their
There were nods of agreement as the Queen turned and
left the square, heading for the only fully built hut in
Themiscrya; the Queen’s Hut. Medea could take charge of
the others tonight. She had much to think about.
Medea turned to the Amazons. "Danae, get that pot
of stew from this afternoon back up to a boil, would you?
We could all use some food," she ordered. Her mind
was elsewhere, however, and her eyes followed Tern as she
moved to help Danae and Alcina serve up the stew.
The Amazons might be wondering about the secret Tern was
hiding, but the mystery was driving Medea crazy. Medea
stared at the back of Tern’s head, watching Tern talk to
the young Amazon by the campfire.
"Patience, she’ll tell you when she's
ready," Alcina said, handing the Regent a bowl of
"I can't wait that long!" Medea snapped back.
"You may have to," Alcina said, walking away.
Belen sat across the fire from the pair, eating her
rabbit and checking her bow. She hoped the spirits would
not attack them in their sleep. She wondered who would be
put on guard first.
Quietly eating, Xanthea's eyes scanned the area. She was
young but not stupid. She knew trouble could come from
anywhere at anytime. Especially when they all least
Xanthea pulled her sword out of its sheath and kept it
close at hand. Just in case, she mused. You
never know. She sighed and finished her meal. Her eyes
swept the area one last time before she turned her
attention to their Regent.
"Regent Medea," Xanthea called. "Who will
take first watch tonight?"
"Are you volunteering?" Medea snapped, causing
Xanthea to back away.
Tern placed a hand on Medea’s arm. "Don’t take
your anger at me out on the others," she chided. She
addressed the Amazons. "Do I have any volunteers for
Medea sighed and stood, leaving her stew untouched on
the ground. "Yeah, I'll do it," she said flatly,
then muttered under her breath, "Not like I'm gonna
sleep much anyway..."
"What was that?" Tern asked, one eyebrow
"Yeah…um...I said you guys should probably hit
the hay...big day ahead and all..." she lied airily,
running a hand through her hair.
"Uh...huh..." Tern didn't look convinced, but
didn't press for an answer.
The Amazons ate their fill and slowly headed towards
their bedrolls. Just as Tern was about to get into hers,
Medea tapped her on the shoulder. "Tern, I think we
should do double watches tonight. It was an exhausting
day. Take this watch with me so you can make sure I don't
fall asleep, okay?"
The warrior witch nodded, somewhat annoyed at being
denied her sleep. With a sigh she followed Medea over to
the dying embers of the campfire and sat beside her
apprentice. Shoving a bowl of unfinished stew at the
Regent she forced a smile and asked, "Hungry,
Medea sighed and took the stew, continuing to munch.
"So uh, you gonna tell me about that amulet we got
off the specter thing?" Medea asked. Tern half
"How about this day?" Medea asked hopefully.
Tern shook her head and made a signal there were too many
"When the timing is right, junior. Not
"Aw, you're gonna get all teacher-like on me aren't
you?" Medea sighed.
Tern chuckled. "Stay alert, junior."