I don’t think I’ve heard Volkan utter as many words as he did in the past two days for the whole time we have known him. And yet, there he was: all animated checking and, mostly, redesigning my plans for the bow. His genius is unquestionable, I am but a mere apprentice, but I have learned so much, not just from his skills and attention to detail, but from the passion he’s put into every element of the bow.
I’ve melted mithral in the forge and then shaped the base of the bow. It took a good few tries before I got it right, but luckily, for all his bluntness, Volkan proved to be a patient teacher. I learned to measure the bow, as it needs to fit the height of the wielder. And to make small vine leaves from mithral and then enchant them with runes; Hippofillius helped with a sample, an actual vine that magically grew around the bow for me to shape mine after. Vines, something to help Corinna remember the vineyards she grew up in, the vineyards she is so keen to support with her winnings.
And we’ve made something, something that will help Corinna in the games, something that will help her defend Anora, something that will help make the world a better place. I felt like I had a purpose and I don’t think I’ve been so happy in a long while. Maybe I can try to make something for the others too. I already have an idea for Calliope as she’s asked me if the magical lily petal could be preserved. And something for Loreus to make sure he is safe. But how about something to help Braz fight harpies or something to protect Hippofilius’ beast form… so many ideas, I may need another notebook. I have so much more to learn.
Corinna thinks of us as heroes. The people that stories are written about. How do I tell her I don’t entirely believe that to be the case? That I feel just like a random adventurer thrown in the middle of this chaos, lucky enough to still be alive. Or is this what heroes feel like… is bravery, fearlessness and dedication to a greater cause just something that’s added in later as the stories are told. If you listen to Loreus, I am some goddess, truly the stuff of poetry… is there so little truth to the stories we are told?