The next day, Ezylryb checks my left wing. "Your wing is healed. I want you to try flying," Ezylryb tells me. I flap my wings and fly across the hollow to Ezylryb's writing desk.
Once there, I turn back to Ezylryb. "My wing is a bit stiff. Other than that, it's alright," I explain.
"Good. This means that you're ready to train to be a guardian," Ezylryb says.
"Alright," I agree.
"I'll let Boron and Barran know," Ezylryb tells me as he flies out of the hollow.
I turn to Octavia. "What now? I mean, I still don't understand everything that goes on here," I say, my voice tinged with confusion.
"You'll start out with chawlet practices. That means you will have mini classes under certain chaw instructors," Octavia explains.
Ten minutes later, Ezylryb flies back in. "It's arranged, Silver. You'll start chawlet practice in an hour," Ezylryb informs me.
An hour later, I am being led in chawlet practice under Strix Struma's lead. It is fairly simple. I get board for that very reason. I also have chawlet practice with Dewlap right after. I go through the same types of chawlet practices for a few weeks. At the end of the third week, news of chaw tapping comes to me by word of Ezylryb. That next night will be my last night of chawlet practice. Some of the chaws I wouldn't mind having. The only chaw I want to be put in is Ezylryb's weather interpretation chaw. I hope I don't get the colliering chaw, though. I have always been afraid of fire. I can't bear the mere thought of flying into fire. That night, after chawlet practice, I listen to Madame Plonk sing the good light song. After she finishes singing, I fly to my nest and look in my bedding. I see both a dried caterpillar for weather interpretation and a coal for colliering. "So, Silver, are you happy with the chaws you got?" Ezylryb asks.
"I don't mind weather interpretation, but must I have colliering too? I've always kept my distance when it comes to fire. There's no way in hagsmire that I'm going to fly in it! Pardon the pun," I tell him.
"Silver, there's no need to be afraid. You won't be at any forest fire alone, especially not the first. Elvan, Bubo, and I will be there as well," Ezylryb explains.
"You don't get it. When I found out about me being in the colliering chaw, I remembered something. A forest fire broke out just as I was hatching. The smoke was thick and I couldn't breath. I didn't know what was happening. I was afraid. Within moments after I hatched, I was taken by the Pure Ones. I thought they saved me. It turns out that I was thrown into another Hagsmire," I continue.
"Silver, that's in the past. It will be alright," Ezylryb replies.
"Alright," I agree to it. I can't let go of my fear as of yet, though. The sun starts to rise, so I go into my nest and fall asleep.
The next night, I wake up to the sound of wind howling outside. I walk out of the sleeping chamber. I shiver. "It's freezing!" I exclaim.
"Then you won't like what I'm about to say. You're having your first chaw practice tonight," Ezylryb explains.
"In this? You have got to be yoicks!" I exclaim.
"Well, lets get to the dining hollow. Weather chaw eats raw meat only with the fur still on," Ezylryb continues.
"Now that I can live with," I reply as I follow him. We stand at Octavia's table to dine. When we finish the last bit of vole, Ezylryb leads us to the takeoff branch. He leads us straight into the gale force winds. I fly my position right behind Ezylryb. He has us fly upside down to punch the wind, as he says. We start flying straight again. I get a strange feeling in my gizzard. I look around. No one else seems to feel it. I decide to ignore it for now. I'll tell Ezylryb later.
After chaw practice and Break light, I decide to talk to Ezylryb. I find him reading in the hollow. "Ezylryb," I address him.
He looks up. "Yes, Silver," Ezylryb addresses me back.
"During chaw practice, I felt something strange and familiar. It felt as if we were being watched," I explain.
"Are you sure?" Ezylryb asks.
"I felt it many times before. Of course I'm sure!" I answer.
"It could be nothing. We'll just need to keep our eyes and ear slits open," Ezylryb advises. I nod my head in agreement and head off to sleep.
I wake up to someone shaking me. "Is it nighttime already?" I ask in a voice drenched with exhaustion.
"No, but there's a forest fire in Silverveil. I'm having the chaw assemble early to see how forest fires change things so far away," Ezylryb explains. I fly up to the top of the tree. While there, Ezylryb explains everything about the forest fire's relation to cloud formations to the newer chaw members. Then, we are dismissed to take a short nap.
Two hours later, we are perched on a cliff away from the fire. Ezylryb goes out to find the safest point of access to the forest fire. When he comes back, we fly to the point he found. I had just landed on the waiting spot. Ezylryb is addressing us, but this time I'm not listening. My eyes are set on the flames. Shapes are revealing themselves in the fire. I see Metal Beak leading the Pure Ones against the Great Tree. Then, the visions shift. I see an owl. She is speaking to me in words that seem very familiar. Suddenly, I become aware of Ezylryb's voice next to me. "Silver!" Ezylryb shakes me.
I shake my head and turn to Ezylryb. "The Pure Ones are coming. They're going to attack the Great Tree!" I exclaim.
"How do you know?" Ezylryb asks.
"I saw it in the flames," I answer.
"You have firesight," Ezylryb tells me. He seems almost as surprised as I am.
"I also saw a female owl. She spoke words to me. Her words seemed to be of a different language," I continue. I left out the fact that her words were known to me.
Ezylryb looks surprised. "What language do you think it was?" Ezylryb asks.
"It sounded like Krakish," I answer. I am next to fly into the fire. Ezylryb flies above the flames to watch for any trouble. I catch an airborne coal in my beak. After the others take their turn, we fly back to the Great Tree.
Over the next few days, I grow to be overly anxious. I feel that I am close to finding out something new. The female owl seemed familiar. My gizzard lurched with the feeling of longing. I hadn't known that the feeling existed. One evening, Ezylryb notices my anxiety. "You seem nervous lately. What's wrong, Silver?" Ezylryb asks.
"The female owl in my vision. She seems familiar. When I think of her, I feel a longing that I didn't know existed," I answer.
"What kind of owl was she?" Ezylryb asks.
"She was a Whiskered Screech," I answer.
"Do you think it's possible that she could've been your mother?" Ezylryb asks.
"Now that you mention it, yes. I'll write the words that she spoke to me," I tell him. I fly over to Ezylryb's writing desk and begin to write. When I finish writing, I read the words aloud. "Frahmm, frihl tuoy. Misnacht, bity nachtglaux. Misnacht glauc. Vuoyven nynik misnacht glauc. Vuoyven misnacht erraghh. I know it is a warning from the owl. She warns me of evil that burns like fire. She says that the owls are against Glaux. They understand only rage," I tell him.
"The precise translation is 'flames, it burns you. Understand, it will be against Glaux. Understand life. They never understand life. They understand rage.' How did you know what it meant? Why do you think she told you that? Why would she have spoken in Krakish?" Ezylryb asks.
"I felt the meaning of those words. Other than that, I don't know. All I want are some answers," I tell him.
"You wonder about her, don't you? You want to know whether or not she's still alive. After all, your vision wasn't a scroom," Ezylryb states.
"I never knew her or my da for that matter! I don't even know what they look like! How am I supposed to find them?" I ask. My voice broke and tears streamed down my face. I turn my head away so that he wouldn't see my tears. That did no good, though. I felt Ezylryb put his wing around me and pull me into an embrace. Only then did I start to cry. I sob loudly for the grief that I feel. I just can't hold my emotions back anymore. When I quiet down, I pull myself away from Ezylryb. I'm embarrassed, so I look away from him.
"There's no reason to feel embarrassed, Silver. Do you think that even I have never shed a tear in my life? A long time ago, my mate, Lil, was killed in battle," Ezylryb tells me.
I look at him. "You're Lyze of Kiel?" I ask in surprise.
"How did you know?" Ezylryb answers my question with another question.
"Nyra, Metal Beak's mate, mentioned that. She was hatched in the Northern Kingdoms and knows everything when it comes to wars, past and present," I answer.
"Well, I don't want you telling anyone," Ezylryb tells me.
"Oh, don't worry. Discreet is my middle name," I comply. I pause. "Maybe we should head over to the library. Anything to get my mind off of those strange words," I suggest.
"Good idea," Ezylryb agrees.