“Wow. This is amazing. In my wildest imagination I could not have imagined this. Upashna! You are a dragon! A beautiful dragon,” exclaims The Philosopher.
“Please do not be afraid of me my Philosopher. I will bring you no harm. This form is the only way we can ride the currents of the Other Wind to reach the Other Realm and my parents before the third night of the new moon.
“I am not afraid Upasha,” says The Philosopher. “I know you will not harm me.”
“Thank you for accepting me in this form. I was concerned you might reject me after giving up everything your life held dear at one time. That would have brought much pain to my heart. You have now seen me in all my dimensions and all of them are facets of who I am. Woman, daughter, wizard, princess and dragon. They are all parts of me, Upashna.”
“The woman, the daughter, the wizard, the princess, and the dragon. I accept completely all of who you are Upashna. Completely.” The Philosopher pauses for a moment. “I hear your voice inside my head and not in my ears. How are you speaking to me? I did not know dragons could talk.”
“Dragons are the First Creatures. We were placed here as a force to maintain the balance between man and nature. We are guardians of the planet and the planet is in danger. We communicate and receive communication telepathically. You hear my thoughts directed toward you and I hear your thoughts directed toward me. But we must go. The currents of the Other Wind are starting. Please climb up my wing with our packs and hold on tightly to my neck.”
The Philosopher did as instructed with his staff and their packs in tow he climbed up Upashna’s wing and gripped the two spines coming from her neck. She stood up upon her sturdy hind legs, lifted her wings and took off into the darkness which surrounded the small landing platform. She rose straight up into the darkness reaching a blue stream of air currents which she entered. “We are now in the Other Wind. This will take us around the Sun and to the Other Realm and we will meet my parents,” Upashna communicated to The Philosopher.
“Are they dragons also?” asks The Philosopher.
“We are all dragons but you will meet them in their human forms. They lead the Council of Wizards.” The Philosopher was still in a state of amazement as he looked out upon the skies of the Universe. From his position he viewed the many stars and constellations and knew most of them by name but did not remember how this information had come to him. The Other Wind was a sky blue current in which Upashna traveled and maneuved as the captain steers a ship. Her glide was as graceful as the air itself. She did not need to flap her large expended wings at all. The philosopher remembered the dream he experienced his first night in the home of the Wizard of Swansea. This was that dream. He is riding on the back of a dragon, the wind against his face. He heard Upashna’s voice.
“Philosopher. I am curious. May I ask a question.”
Upashna continues. “The morning I came into your chambers at the third gate to awaken you for breakfast, you were still dreaming and you called out a woman’s name.”
“Yes. That is the name you called. How do you remember her as your memory before the realm of magic was surrendered to Extor for passage?”
“Yes, Upashna. I remember her because she visited me that night in my chambers and she brought to me all of the memories we shared in life stored in that dream. She told me I must be willing to surrender the life I had lived up until that moment so as to embrace the life waiting for me and I must forget her to do so. She relieved me of the promise I made to her the night she died.”
“So that is why your asked Extor if the dreams you dreamed during your journey through the realm of magic would remain as part of your memory. You did not want to forget her.”
“Will you share with me your story, unless it is too private? I do not wish to intrude. It would help to pass the time of this journey.”
“We met in the library where I occasionally worked on Sunday afternoons to give Isabel, the regular librarian, a day off. Kara and her husband were regular patrons. I was very attracted to her but hid my attraction out of respect for her married status. She was older than me, always properly dressed and very attractive. She would often stand on the other side of the desk and converse with me while her husband researched various books. I learned later she was interviewing me as a possible match for her daughter who was much younger.
I left South Port for about five years to travel and visit some of the other islands of EarthSea while I was still young and travel would not be a burden. When I returned to Havnor, I heard she and her husband had parted ways and she was single once again but had moved to the Isle of Eskel. At this point I had forgotten about her and moved on with my life.
Some six months later I am on my way to the library for my Sunday work when I see Kara coming toward me from the opposite direction. Although the years had been very kind to her, I did not know if she would recognize me. She did and begin to move toward me and I toward her. We embraced for the first time. I did not want to let go but when I did, I looked up and we were standing in front of the library where we had meant six years previously.
She had only recently returned to South Port and we started to share time together. Although we lived in separate homes, we shared most of our hours and started to make plans to share a common home and life when she returned from a trip to Derhemen to visit her daughter. She never returned as the sea claimed her. At that point we had spent only eighteen months of the rest of our lives together, but those months were full of love and the joy of living. Looking back I realize the only time wasted during those months were the times we were apart.”
“She was there when you embraced me before we passed through the third gate. Did you feel her presence? She was there to wish us happiness together. I felt no jealousy, only love and respect for her. She said for me to follow my heart and to let it fall in love with you and not to worry about the council.”
“What did you answer?” asked The Philosopher.
“I told her I had already fallen in love with you and I had no worries at all.”