Tianna had always felt that anger inside of her. Anger at her first family for abandoning her. For being ashamed of her. Her logical side knew that she would be dead if they hadn’t, but that side rarely won when it came to her parents. She hated them. That hate had driven her to extreme loyalty to her family in Lower Balaria. For that she was grateful. She was proud to be their daughter and prouder still to help them in any way she could.
For the first time ever, Tianna felt ashamed of that hate. She saw herself as a child with the fever. She saw the pain in her parent’s faces as she wasted away. She saw the money they spent on every healer or remedy that might have some effect. She saw herself recovering. She heard the healers say that she would be too frail for the tests; that she wouldn’t survive them. She saw the curtains drawn closed, heard her mother and father announce that she had passed away. Watched her own funeral from her bedroom window.
That night her mother and father cried as they gave Tianna to a stranger to take away. They handed him a large sum of money for his trouble and a folded parchment and another pouch of coins for the family he was delivering her too. Tianna’s last memory of her parents was their silent images fading into the dark. Tianna wished now, more than anything, that she could thank them. That she could somehow make up for the years of hate that had built up inside. Her emotions finally saw what her logic had all along. Her parents loved her more than anything and had risked everything to save her.
Tianna wished that she could see her parents again. Their faces burned in her mind. She wanted to thank them. To let them know she was doing well. But she knew that for there to even be a chance of that, she needed to prevent the events described in Aron and Tybel’s prophecies. She knew that the group had a tough road ahead, but the drive to save both of her families made the path clearer than it ever was before.
Tonight, Tianna carved only two images into her staff even though it had been the fullest day of her life. She carved a wrapped parcel, a reminder of the gift her parents had given her by sending her away, and a compass pointing due north as an indicator of her renewed purpose.