The Eavesdropper - Part 3

Date Posted: January 24, 2022

This chapter was written in collaboration with Scylla.

“And if you have truly avoided telling him this, why would you tell him now?” Scylla added, crossing her arms. “What would precipitate you bringing this revelation to Amon’s attention?”

Tad responded to Scylla’s question with a slight grunt. He crossed his arms as he responded slowly, obviously picking his words carefully. “Because I’d rather he hear it factually, from me, than falsely from somewhere else. ‘Tis a complicated affair, and one that has a connection to the happenings of the End of Days. I’m sure you’ve heard tell of this.”

“Wait,” Amon began to object sternly. “I know nothing more about the End of Days than anyone else. Are you trying to say that-”

“No, no!” his cousin interrupted quickly. “’Tis not what I’m saying at all. Trust me on this… ‘tis better to maneuver through this one step at a time.”

The bard lowered his brows. He didn’t like the sound of this… there had to be more to it, but Tad seemed reluctant to expand on it further.

“Things are unraveling and the past is coming back to haunt the course of the future,” Tad looked at them both somberly. “I wouldn’t be surprised to see rumors make their way all the way here, eventually.” 

“Rumors?” Scylla repeated, pulling up a stool at the counter. “There’s been talk about the End of Days, and the only rumors are that these towers have something to do with it.”

She thrummed her fingers on the table, looking squarely at Tad. 

“But what does Amon, and this clone story have to do with that? No one even cares about him or I, our former stations, or whether we could bring the end of anything.” 

Amon might have been the destroyer of Allag, but he was in no way capable of bringing the End of Days- the destruction of the planet. The sunken crystal tower was a civilization destroyer, but even that catastrophe could not strip the world of all life.

Scylla pursed her lips. Even more farfetched would be that the Elezen in front of her could cause it.

“Our past is long dead, and the Tower is sealed away.” She sighed, looking out the window. “I don’t understand how Amon even relates to anything in the present?”

Amon watched as Tad completely withdrew at the bombardment of questions, shaking his head again and again. “I didn’t say he was the cause, I said ‘tis a connection. I won’t say any more because I don’t have all the sources on hand, nor do I fully understand the situation myself. But I’m certain you’ll see tidings of it before long.” 

“Very well,” Amon wedged into the conversation, trying to get his cousin off the hook. If Tad was being secretive, it had to be for a good reason. To keep nattering at the same sore spot would get them anywhere. “But all that doesn’t change what I do know.”

He looked down at his hand, opening his palm, staring at it as if it might have some answers.

“What do I do now?” 

“You come here to tell us this revelation, dumping this like a pile of mythril bricks on Amon’s head, and now you tell us just to sit and wait for destruction to find us?” Scylla found her heart pounding, as she stood up almost defensively blocking Amon from his cousin.

“I do not accept your explanation. Something is missing,” Scylla looked up defiantly. “If you don’t have answers from your past, then we will just have to find them somewhere else.”

The mage looked back over her shoulder and turned about, looking at the sorrowful bard. His ears betrayed his feelings as they drooped low. He looked so dejected and lost, and in need of comfort.

“Look at me, Amon.”

The mage locked eyes with the hunched-over Elezen. “You aren’t a mere duplicate. Tad is right about one thing – there appears to be more to this story than has been revealed.” 

Unconsciously, her hand reached across, laying her palm over his.

“We’ll find answers to this.”

For a moment, Amon was afraid there was about to be a scuffle between the spirited Princess and the equally as spirited Elezen. But, wisely, Tad kept silent under Scylla’s barrage.

The bard could only look on in wonder that he didn’t have the energy to hide. Was she actually defending him? Even if it was just from his own cousin, this turn of events boggled his mind.

Not only did she seem concerned and protective she…

Scylla put her hand over his open palm, a gesture that both took him aback and made his heart leap up into his throat. He hoped beyond hope his ears weren’t flushing in the moment, though his golden eyes were wide and fixed on the Princess.

She was reassuring him. She was kindly reassuring him.

What did that mean?

Did she care about him? Even if he was some weird, fake clone of Amon – though she did not seem convinced of his lack of authenticity.

We’ll find answers to this.

That was something he usually said in the face of situations like this. He knew it was an effort to be encouraging, and usually spoken when someone else was at a loss and answers weren’t at hand.

But thinking about it… Scylla was correct. He was so ready to just hang his whole life up before he’d even considered looking deeper into the situation. If anything, Tad’s silence didn’t frustrate him… it encouraged him.

He also believed there was more to this. If so, if it wasn’t a simple open and shut case of cloning, then what could it mean?

“Aye…” he spoke unsteadily. “’Tis a shame I don’t have my tools. If I could do some aetherochemical biological scans, then I could better assess the situation.”

“Why can’t you?” Tad finally broke his silence to ask.

Amon shook his head with a grimace, “I’d need access to my tools in the Tower. But ‘tis been sealed tight once again.”

“I see,” his cousin said in a way that hinted that he was sitting on yet more knowledge he wasn’t letting on.

“I guess I’ll have to do with what we have,” Amon pursed his lips. Not to let the opportunity pass him by, he put his hand on top of Scylla’s gazing at her with a surprising softness.