This story is a xover of David Eddings works of Belgariad/Mallorean and Elenium/Tamuli series. I love those books. I've read the 5 from Belgariad more then 30x each, and the Mallorean at least dozen times. And the Elenium/Tamuli books I've likely read nearly a dozen times each.
Just a recap: Pandions ask for Aphrael, Genidians ask for Hanka, Cyrinnics ask Romalic, and here, Alciones ask for Naslin. When I say ask, I mean pray/cast spells. Since in the E/T world, magic is done by the caster saying a prayer spell to ask the gods to do something for his use. Which words they use and which gestures are important, as they have to be framed in a certain manner for the Gods to consider doing what is asked of them. Unlike in B/M where the power is inside the person and they just need to have the belief that what they want to happen will happen. Then they pull in their Will (power) and say the Word (anything, no special words, just an aural cue to release the gathered Will) Gestures not needed, but done for extra effect on witnesses.
To answer a few reviews:
First Thank YOU ALL FOR REVIEWING AND READING. I can not express my thanks enough to any one who has read or reviewed my works, especially this one.
Sparhawk watched as his daughter played with her cat. The little feline was the same age as when she'd gotten it, and he wondered how no one else seemed to notice that Mrr never seemed to grow any larger or suffer the signs of old age common to a cat nearly 10 years old. The stuffed toy she'd inherited from her mother was sitting nearby, still seeeming to look to fall apart at any moment, and he chuckled as he realised that if not for the fact tthat his daughter was the heir to the throne, she would have put away such a childs toy long ago in search of a husband.
But Danea had chosen her husband at an age much similar to that of her mother and as far as he was concerned, she could remain a child for as long as she wanted. He wasn't ready to see her off and married just yet. Talen was starting to shape up into a fine knight, but he still had too much of the thief in him for Sparhawk's frame of mind. Still, if Danea had to marry, he would rather she marry someone he knew and trusted with his life then someone he didn't know or respect. And he did know and respect Talen, and knew that the young man would never do anything to harm Danea.
Though it might take a search team some time to track him down once he realised the trap Danea had set for him.
"Danea, can I speak to you for a moment? About those treats you'd asked about?" he asked quietly, not wanting to risk any one over hearing. Ehlana was sitting in her chair, trying to knit. Mirtai, pregnant once again and visiting with Kring and their oldest children, was fretting over Ehlana, loudly wondering how the woman could be still be so thin after such a long time. Platime, Stragen, Kalten and Talen were in a corner playing a game of dice. Sephrenia and Valen had gone to bring their daughter to their rooms as she had grown tired and cranky. Kahlad, Bevier, and Berit were having some kind of theological discussion on the validity of the history of gods.
The little girl looked up and studied the others for a moment before blinking. She turned to Sparhawk, and he could see the shift in her eyes as she made the mental change from Danea to Aphrael. "What do you want to talk about, Sparhawk? I'm very busy right now, and it's a lot of effort just to have Danea this active. I was almost going to have her head to bed when Sephrenia and Valen left, but then how would I later have her know stuff that she wasn't around to hear."
Sparhawk frowned and just sighed as the comlex nature of his daughter showed itself once again. "Never mind that now, Aphrael. How long will it be before Tynian and Ulath get here. You said something about this Garion travelling with them since you aren't about to feel them the way you normaly do. Something about interference from a strong source of power."
The child goddess frowned and turned to look at their friends. "People give off a kind of echo. It's not sound or smell, but it is a kind of combination of the two. Usually I can track people depending on how familliar I am with their echo. Tynian and Ulath were hunting not far from the border. Then their echo was replaced with one a thousand times more powerful that covered an area of several leagues in every direction. And not just the directions you use, but also up to the sky and down below the ground. Gods are limitted by the flat level humans are, so we're able to feel things that you aren't able to detect. So as long as someone is in this world, I can usually find them. But this other presence is blocking Ulath and Tynian's completely, from ALL directions and senses. It's like a shadow has shown up on the world and is spreading it's influence. Except that the shadow doesn't seem to be a threat. There is a threat that is growing, but it's a long distance away in a place I can't reach."
"So you do think it's this Garion person with our missing friends? You are sure nothing has happened to them?" Sparhawk asked, worried about the two knights.
"If they had died, I would have felt it, even through the interference. Like I lost a part of myself. And Hanka and Raslin would also have felt it. Whenever one of the thousand looses a follower, and despite what you say, the Order Knights are technically our followers, we feel their passing. Like a part of our self was lost. You'd feel it if a finger was cut off, right? We'll that's sort of the feeling we get."
Sparhawk stood and moved over to the window to look out over his city, his home. He'd spent long years in dry dessert country because of the actions of Annias and Ortha. Years he should have been here to help his beloved Queen find a husband worthy of her and protecting her city. He felt cheated by those lost years. He was too old for the adventure that was about to take place. He'd been fighting for more then 30 years now, and each of those years and the lives he'd taken weighed heavily on his mind and were marked in the scars on his body.
"I'm tired of this, Aphrael. I've been fighting my whole life, and I want it to stop. I almost don't care if this evil you're so scared of does take over, so long as it leaves me and my family alone." Sparhawk said as he moved back to his seat and took his former position. "What do you think is going to happen, Aphrael? How much longer can I do this and survive? Your mother deserves to have me with her for as long as I have left. I don't want to go on the trail again, hunting down endless clues, just to end up going somewhere we all knew the problem was but were too foolish to not simply go in the first place. I can't do it any more."
Aphrael was worried. She'd never heard Sparhawk sound so defeated and lost. If not for the natural shields that were a part of his nature as Anhaka, she would suspect that someone was fooling around with his mind. But his nature obscured him from any source seeking to alter his mind or emotions. So this was all his own raw emotion, emotions he'd likely hidden even from himself. And she had to admit, if only to herself, that he had something of a point. He had done more to protect the world then most people, and had suffered more loss then any one had a right to ask of him while doing so. But the same factor that had tired him, also meant he was the only one capable of doing what needed to be done. No other person would be able to handle what was asked of him and emerge victorious. That was why he was Anhaka and that was what being Anhaka entailed. Finding the way to prevail, even when all hope is lost.
"I don't know, Sparhawk. I know it's not fair, and it's not right for us to ask more of you, but the sad fact is, you are the only one capable of doing what needs to be done. The rest of us can only help you reach the place where the deed must be finished, but it comes down to you to accomplish what ever it is that needs doing. We will support you as best we can, but it is you who must decide whether it is best to let the world fall into darkness, or to do what you must to ensure life continues as freely as it can." Aphrael hugged the man, noticing for the first time just how old and worn the knight was. There was a slackness to his frame that had never been there and years of peace had caused his powerful body to fade into a shadow of it's former strength. "I love you father, no matter what happens. You've been the best father I've had in a very long time."
Sparhawk chuckled and hugged the goddess. "Now, why don't you go back to Danea and head to bed. I think I want to spent some alone time with your mother."
Garion frowned. He was getting tired of all the delays. He could feel the tug of the orb getting stronger and knew they were getting closer to the source. But they weren't moving fast enough. Tynian and Ulath had been drafted into travelling guard over a caravan of pilgrims heading to Cimura and he was stuck trailing after them.
He moved over to Tynian's side since the blonde knight was easier to speak to then the giant Ulath. "I don't know why you agreed to do this. We're travelling too slowly." he muttered quietly.
Tynian sighed and looked down at the odd man matching the pace with the horses. Granted it was a gentle gait only a bit quicker then a plodding walk, but still, the man moved as though he could outpace one of the Peloi's quickest racers. "Garion, I understand that you are in a hurry, but it's the duty of all of the Orders to give aid and defend the faithful in any waay possible unless under orders from a higher source. Ulath and I could no more ignore out duty, then you could have ignored yours." Tynian didn't know toomuch about their new travelling companion, but he'd learned enough to know that duty was a very imnportant -if frustrating and often hated- concept the other man.
Garion sighed. 'Duty. It always comes down to duty. It's always me who has to do the painful things, who has to suffer because it's my DUTY and only I can do what needs to be done.' he thought bitterly to himself. "Sometimes Tynian, I'd like to kill whoever thought up the idea of 'duty'. My entire life has been one 'duty' after another. Some I didn't mind. Xe'Nedra was the first major 'duty' of my life, and I could never complain about her. But others, Tynian. Some of the other 'duties' I've had forced on me should have destroyed me. I had to watch everyone and everything I ever loved die because it was MY 'DUTY' to live. I had to choose a course that I thought would kill MY OWN SON because of the 'duty' I had to the rest of the world. I have spent countless years wandering the world and watching every place I knew vanish as the very face of the world changed. All because it was MY 'DUTY'. Don't speak to me of 'duty', Tynian, for you know NOTHING about the horrors of 'Duty'." Garion stopped speaking and moved forward, matching the pace of the lead wagon while ignoring the looks the pilgrims gave him.
For those who guessed the mysterious figure at the end of Ch5 was Zedart, you are . . .wrong. I had toyed with Zedar for a while be decided he was too obvious. I woudl suggest going back and rereading that section of my story closely. It's stated fairly clearly that the figure had not interacted with the group during the events of the Belgariad. Zedar most certainly did take part in those events, and could not have tried to gie advice to Zandramas since at that time he was encased in a few thousand feet of solid bedrock.