By Teal Razor, slave of Captain Siri Emerald Jr, Port Olni Warrior


Well, who da thunk it?  I was witness to a blue flaming of the ears of the good citizens of Port Olni on Friday night at the temple service.  The new Initiate, Solaran, was pounding his fists in the air, exhorting who ever would listen, to be better than they were being.   It seems the Blessed One has caught wind of a piece of calumny perpetrated in the city.  The initiate had the good graces to not reveal the name of the individual.  It seems he is more discreet than I would even be.
There is something delightful about naming the names of  those who have breached the boundaries of good taste.  It  can be so delicious to jeer and caste a disapproving eye at another.  There are so many times when I have felt compelled to do this.  I am guilty. And, the kiss of the whip has finally caused this habit to exit my practice.
Well, the Friday temple service was exciting.  I arrived about 15 ehn early to beg the Blessed One to speak louder.   I arrived to beat about the bush trying to tell our Holy man about the slaves.  The slaves, low beasts that they are, were complaining in the market place about not being able to hear the Blessed Initiate when they had to kneel so far from the door.  My entreaties got his attention and as he started the service, his voice rang out in thunderous claps.  There was a fisherman floating in a round boat near the Olni shore.  He stood in fear, looking around for a possible blue flaming.  It was kinda amusing because at the time a thunderstorm started and the rumbles and flashes of lightning matched the words from the Initiate’s mouth.
Barring my ridiculous observations, the content and delivery of the service was bone chilling.  There were quite a few attendees inside the temple.  Among them were the Ubara of Olni, an Ambassador, the Olni City Kennel Slavers, and three slaves.  There were others standing about the temple.   I could feel the astonishment in the air coming from inside the service.  The only thing I felt from the slaves surrounding me was the hot breath from their yawns.  To be sure, it was a cold day.  Snow was still on the ground.  One of the slaves, gratefully, lit a brazier and we huddled close to it.  These slaves may need a dressing down from their owners. But, I guess it is hard to concentrate on the Holy Ones words when your lips and fingers are turning blue. I tried to elicit some conversation but was regaled with things like, “Did you see that so and so’s Master bought her a new set of silks that cost more than the dress his companion wore to their companioning ceremony?”  And, “I cooked three suls last night for my Master’s household and all three burst into flame on the hearth.”   I nodded dumbly. 
The content of the Blessed One’s speech exhorted all of Olni to stop the idol gossip and bickering that was perceived to be present.  He said that the Priest-Kings know all about what goes on everywhere including Olni.  He intimated that Olni will not be permitted to stand unless we are undivided in our loyalties to the city.  The old adage, “a chain is only as strong as its weakest link”, was shouted so loudly that I’ll bet anyone in the public baths could have heard it.  And how about that other saying, “a house divided cannot stand”, a truth if there ever was one. 
I watched as everyone left the service, their beautiful robes glinting in the setting Tor tu Gor.  The Ubara  appeared to have tears welling in her eyes.  The slavers were uneasy, and more so since the free woman slaver was in need of a toilet.  She is nine months pregnant and her bladder could not be counted on to hold its contents for long periods.
The Ambassador, as he exited, turned his attention to the thrall that was kneeling with us.  He greeted him and told him to serve with heart.  At that point, I was so cold I would have preferred he serve with heat.
I glanced up at the Blessed One as he came out the door and exhorted us all to go in peace.  There was a wistful look on his face.  One of deep concern.  He had the look of a father whose son is being sent off into battle.  His eyes were overlaid with love, pride. and fear.  I took my leave and went to the commons area to see if there was any buzz about the service.  I have not  heard any yet, put I will certainly keep my ears open and report back any developments.

From the NEW VOICE OF GOR v.3 Issue 144

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