Roots Entwine by Victoria Bastedo

Roots Entwine by Victoria Bastedo

Author:Victoria Bastedo
Language: eng
Format: epub
Tags: phoshatkingquestmissionteenagerjoaquinkallumfantasy adventuretreesmagic
Publisher: Melange Books

Chapter Eighteen

“The Phoshat’s gift is simple,” said Kallum. “He’s capable of heightening his senses, to an amazing degree at times, whenever he chooses, and then calming his senses back into place until they are barely more perceptive than yours or mine.”

The Shenandyan group stared at them, puzzled.

“You make no sense, Kallum,” Cardenhorid protested.

“Joaquin can hear better, see better, smell better,” he clarified.

“That means nothing,” said one of the advisors. “Our scouts are trained to heighten their senses as well.”

“Can one of your scouts tell you where a man is, a quarter of a mile away, because he can hear his heart beating?”

The advisor blinked.

“You’re beginning to understand,” Kallum said. “You see, you may as well release your guards from restriction, because it would’ve been impossible for them to hide from Joaquin, unless they could stop their hearts beating or keep their skin from smelling like sweat and their clothes from smelling like their last meal.”

“Ridiculous!” Dehennthamen objected. “These lies are even more insane than I supposed!”

The man stopped and laughed at them, and several other advisors joined in.

“If you’re so convinced I’m lying,” said Kallum with a simple tone, “then put Joaquin to the test.”

“And how do you suggest we test this Phoshat?” asked Cardenhorid.

“You decide,” stressed Kallum. “That way you can’t accuse us of setting up the test beforehand.”

“I know what to do, Father!” interjected Malaya, leaning in to whisper in the man’s ear.

“Excuse me, young lady,” interrupted Kallum. “But if Joaquin tried, he could easily hear what you’re about to whisper. May I suggest that you make your plan in the next room, written down on paper? Joaquin, sharp as his senses are, can’t see through walls.”

The leader got up, his face intrigued and to Joaquin’s surprise every one of the advisors- and Malaya too, rose from their seats and hurried out of the room with him to make up their test. The only Shenandyan left was the scout guard that had been with them all day. The man still maintained his silence at this development, but Joaquin saw that his face was hiding a smile of humor again. Joaquin decided, then and there, that he liked him.

The Shenandyans were gone for several minutes, and their excited whispers from the next room could be heard by all. But they hadn’t given anything away. When they came back, they looked pleased with themselves.

“We have a test in mind,” Cardenhorid said.

“Are you sure that you didn’t whisper the test out loud to each other, just now? For we all heard you whispering.”

“We’re not dumb Kallum,” said the leader. “Nothing pertinent to the test was said out loud. Let’s begin.”

“Just a moment,” said Kallum. He leaned over. “Joaquin, are you sure you...”

But Joaquin shushed him.

“I’m fine,” he said. “Do the test.”

Cardenhorid turned to Dehennthamen.

“Go and release the five scouts that are on restriction,” he told them. “Either these strangers are telling the truth, or they’ve tricked us as you say. Either way what happened wasn’t the scouts’ fault. I release them from any more scrutiny.


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