The doors of the temple were opened by the Myshkans trapped inside. The first light of the day was being pulled across the horizon like bright orange taffy wrapped in the green of the dipda/kovan canopy. Ony’a stepped out into the courtyard along with all the others who had been kept inside.
As promised, the soldiers were gone; the courtyard was quiet.
Ony’a felt lost. Her home was far away, her father was gone, and now her brother had been taken away. What was there left to fight for? Who was left to fight with? She thought of her brother and what might happen to him. Would they harm him.? Would they give him a fair trial?
She stepped further out into the courtyard to the platform where her brother had begun the ritual just a few days ago. Everything was still in place, just where Lagos had left it all before he ran to the temple. She sighed. It would have been wonderful if the ritual had gone through, if they had just ignored those banners taunting them from the columns. They could have felt a sense of pride again. Her people could have come together. Maybe that’s why Rin did it, she thought, to provoke us all so that we would fight instead of banding together. As long as we are kept separate we will be weak and ineffective. The Kevutians know that. The maceoran knows that, but we didn’t come to see what they were doing until it was too late. Now, everything from the ritual has been left here in the courtyard to remind us of our foolishness.
But not quite everything. Ony’a noticed that the three containers of colored dust were empty. Did they know? It would be a terrible mistake if the Kevutians discovered their secret. She tried to think who she could tell. She thought of Omin and Avin but had no idea where they were right now. Then, she thought of someone.
Ony’a heard the sound of Lyrin’s heavy steps behind her. She turned around.
“I can’t imagine what you’re going through right now,” Lyrin said. She said nothing in return. He put his hand on her shoulder easily covering it. “What do you want to do?”
Ony’a looked into the distance. “I want to help my brother.”
“But how do we do that?”
Ony’a turned to face Lyrin.
“I don’t know but I think there is someone who might.”
“Who would that be?” Lyrin asked.
“Oh, he’s a merchant that works near here.”
Lyrin dropped his hand and looked harder at her. “Your brother is about to go on trial and you want to go shopping.”
Ony’a just smiled. “You’re just going to have to trust me on this. Coming?”