Arla

A curtain stirred and a small pale girl entered the room, smiling shyly at the visitors. To Issa she looked very strange, skin so white it was almost translucent, her pale eyes were huge and her uncombed hair was so fair it was almost white. She was skinny and had muddy knees and a grass stained white robe.

For a moment Issa thought she knew the girl, recognised the feel of her presence, and then the feeling was gone, as if the girl had hidden herself somehow. Issa sensed magic about her, albeit a wild type of magic. She fancied the girl was a little feral, and would turn and flee at any moment. She found herself smiling at her. The girl’s smile faded when she looked at Cirosa and she curtsied deeply before turning back to stare unabashedly at Issa. Cirosa did not introduce her.

~ Arla, Dark Moon Rising

~*~

Arla’s eyes became distant and then she spoke, beholding some image in the water that no other could see.

‘She is close to us now.’

Issa jumped for Arla’s voice was no longer a child’s but a woman’s, rich and echoing around them. Issa’s eyes flickered back to the raven and she felt herself floating towards him, hastily she pulled herself back. She could not join him, not now at least. The air was still, loaded with latent power, and the raven watched and waited. Arla took a small wooden cup from her pocket and filled it. With unblinking eyes and an unsteady child’s hand she passed the cup to Issa.

‘You must enter the Spirit World and accept what visions She brings to you or does not bring. You will see the path you have already chosen,’ the child said in that same rich voice.

~ Arla, Dark Moon Rising

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