I kind of like the manager.
The air cab terminal was one of those buildings that was nearly all windows and the manager was yet another person who knew Cain. He was a middle-aged man with sharp, intelligent eyes and a brusque manner. The former knight could have just been an old customer for him for all the emotion he spared him. He directed the group to one of the carriages with sail wings and explained how they worked as they waited on the pilot.
“The wings there,” he said, pointing to the sails, “gather aether that flows with the wind. We control the flow with aether crystals placed at various stopping points throughout the city. These crystals direct the cabs to their difference locations. The driver uses his ability to control aether to select which crystal to stop at.”
“So to be a pilot you have to be good at controlling aether?” Sarah asked, glancing at Cain.
The manager nodded, following her gaze and bowing his head in respect to the former knight. So, Cain had spoken the truth. This explained why he had already known so much about aether control and alchemy. For having such a low opinion of alchemy, they certainly used its principals a lot.
Not a Happy Homecoming?
Yeah, the idea for the sails having sigils that glow at takeoff was totally borrowed from Rogue Galaxy. :D
Inside the cab, the former knight leaned back in his seat and closed his eye. Was he not interested in seeing his hope once more or was he still tired? Either way, Sarah left him to it. She was too excited to see what Theine looked like from the air.
The driver ran his hand over a green aether crystal and suddenly the wings/sails were filled with wind. Sarah was amazed to see sigils drawn on the sails. These sigils glowed as the air cab glided gently into the air.
“Where are you headed?” the driver called back to them.
“Quadrant 1,” Cain replied, not bothering to open his eye.
Theine from the Air
Sarah pressed her face against the window as they soared through the sky level of the city, weaving around walkways and spires, past grand universities, smaller libraries, huge hangars, and student dorms until they reached the openness of the market district. Here the buildings weren’t as tall, but they were equally grand--shopkeepers attempting to draw in customers with gorgeous fountains, colorful signs, and fancy architecture.
I'm afraid of heights too, but I think I would kind of like walking on a clear walkway. It would be neat.
The former barmaid looked around her. It was a little disconcerting to be standing on a walkway she could see through--that she could see the ground hundreds of feet below her, but it was also neat. It just added to the airy feel of the town. She glanced over at Hikari to see how she was taking it and smiled as the young healer looked around with awestruck eyes.
I really like the last line in this scene. Of course the first part is funny too.
He led them a few feet down the current walkway and then to the left down a side one. They stayed on this one for about a mile before they reached the Navigator’s Repose.
“Sounds like a funeral home for pilots,” Sarah couldn’t help, but remark.
Cain shook his head at her. “The man who runs it used to give me a room in the winters before I went to the academy so that I wouldn’t freeze to death.”
“Sounds like a nice man,” Hikari replied, smiling.
The former knight simply nodded and Sarah finally understood something. Cain was finding his return to his hometown painful rather than comforting or exciting. Too many memories that he would never get back? Or was it simply a living example of the innocence he had lost?
Sighing, she turned her attention to the inn. It was taller than most of the buildings in this area, but it was round like the others. Its architecture resembled Adhartach’s more so, though. It was a wood structure in a sea of stone ones. This was probably how the innkeeper wanted to stand out.
The sign showed a compass with the name of the inn beneath it. It swayed gently in the constant breeze that blew on this level. The door was made of a heavy dark wood--the hinges an even darker metal shaped in intricate patterns.
A giant fountain stood at the center of a huge lobby. A long wooden desk or bar stood at the back of the room. Nicely dressed bartenders stood behind this, mixing drinks or filling out paperwork. To the right of the fountain was a separate room filled with tables and chairs. This room was further divided into a living area where plush couches and chairs sat around a stone fireplace. A beautiful, wooden staircase climbed the left side of the lobby, probably leading to the rooms. Everything was a combination of the traditional architecture of Adhartach and Braon and the astonishing architecture of the ESES headquarters.
Greg = Cid
Greg reminds me a lot of Cid from Final Fantasy VII.
The blond man stared at the former knight in shock. “As I live and breathe…Cain?”
The former knight nodded, pulling his hood back. “Yeah, Greg, it’s me,” he replied softly, still sounding morose.
Greg shook his head. “Man, you look like shit.”
Finally Cain smiled or to be more correct smirked. Sarah had a feeling these two had been more friends than adopted father and son despite the age difference. “Well, you know, murderers never look that great.”
The innkeeper shook his head. “Murderer my ass. I’ll believe you’re a murderer when the Sorceror starts a day care center.”
Cain winced. “I did not need that image.”
© 2011 Jessica M. Walshaw