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Susurrus Distans

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Susurrus Distans (Long Distance Whisper): The mage carries a quiet whisper through the wind to a destination or person that is otherwise too far away.

 

The spell isn’t complicated.

It’s pitifully simple, all things considered.

The spellbook explaining it was tucked on a shelf in Viren’s old dungeon. Covered in dust, surrounded by jars of dead creatures and magical artifacts.

Callum leaves the dungeon the moment he finds it, once again overcome with a thick nausea. Whispers filling his mind of the torture and heinous activity the space had been used for.

Even Gren, possibly the brightest, optimistic person he knows, is hesitant to speak of his time down there.

It’s difficult to find many books that include natural spells, ones that focus upon primal magic instead of dark magic. Any and all newfound information is welcome.

Callum isn’t surprised that this particular book was down there, in hindsight. Claudia had been using the primal stone when he’d stolen it, and she’d been borrowing the precious artifact from her father. It makes sense that Viren had been keeping the book containing sky magic close.

Callum drops the book to his desk, a strange bud of renewed hope flickering to life in his chest.

It’s been over a year.

A year, and this spell has existed the entire time.

The description holds no mention of a way for the message to be reciprocated, not unless the recipient knows the same spell or another primal source’s equivalent.

He feels a little sick. He could’ve been contacting Rayla this entire time. Instead he was fiddling around in the castle library trying to be a mage.

The rune is simple, already imprinted in the back of his mind. He could probably draw it flawlessly without a second glance at the page. Without a second glance at the detailed instructions.

Cast the rune outside or near an open window, imagine the recipient, whisper your message, and let the winds carry your voice.

It’s that easy.

It’s that easy.

There are limits, of course. The spell is easy, small. The messages must mirror the simplicity, must remain short and concise.

Callum scans over the page one last time, heart thundering in his chest as he pushes away from his desk. The metal latch of his bedroom window gives way too easily, late afternoon air hot and sticky in comparison to the castle’s cool interior.

He ignores the neatly made bed beside the window - ignores the way Rayla’s possessions still clutter the nightstand’s drawer. 

“Rayla,” he breathes, mind racing because he’s actually speaking to her. He doesn’t know what to say, now that the time has come. He doesn’t know how to confine every fleeting thought into a few short words.

What he settles on is only fitting.

“Please,” Callum says, just as the winds begin to pick up, pulling at the collar of his doublet and further ruffling his already windswept hair, “come home.”

The gentle summer breeze begins to whir as the rune dissipates, and Callum can hear the fleeting echo of his own voice, twisting and repeating as a large gust blows by, carrying stray leaves and dust.

Just as quickly as it’d begun, the air stills.

Callum lingers by the window for a long moment, staring out at the surrounding forest as trees sway and the gust blows by.

He almost expects something to happen, something magnificent and magical like with the other spells he’s learned. He almost expects to hear a familiar accent, teasing and lithing as a beautiful girl counters his silly, sappy message.

There are no whispering words in response to this spell. No pretty moonshadow elf jumping to reply and heed his desperate plea.

Out in the open summer air, there is nothing.

 

 

-

 

 

Hours later, when night has long since fallen over Xadia, a lone elf hears the faint whisper of a familiar voice on the breeze.

She stalls in her steps, turns on her heels to face the path behind her.

Chilled wind whips around her, tugging at the braids in her hair, tracing the outline of her cloak, reminding her of a love long lost.

There’s no one there, empty darkness her only companion.

Rayla turns back to the moonlit path, and continues on her way.