This was the first time she’d ever gotten an outright no. Divinations loved to dance around the truth, they almost never gave a straightforward answer. Had circumstances been different, she almost would’ve found it funny in a odd way- that a divination would put so much emphasis on an answer that it would just flat out say “no”. Maybe, had the question not been “will the Earthsong be sung?”
“Ok, so maybe our chances aren’t looking all that great…”
Miriam sighed. “You know I can read divinations too, Grandma.”
Saphy had to admit, the situation was pretty bleak. Divinations like The stars will fall from the sky and rend the earth, the physical and spirit realms will collide and crumble, the bell will toll its final hour, and this world shall face its end did not tend to entail fun times.
“So… what now?”
Saphy laughed, “We could go to the beach and have the best vacation of our remaining lives!”
Miriam rolled her eyes “Grandma! I’m serious! The Overseers aren’t responding to us, the spirit realm is destabilizing, and the omens are only getting more and more frequent! We need a plan!”
Saphy bowed her head.
“No, no, No ! That can’t be it! There’s got to be some other way!” Miriam started rummaging through some boxes, old knick knacks and experimentally enchanted objects of varying quality. “There has to be some kind of trick here! What if I play it on an instrument, or- the bell, what about the bell? It’s kinda weird they mentioned a bell, isn’t it?”
Come to think of it, it was a little weird it brought up a bell, thought Saphy. It could just be some weird metaphor, or… maybe...
“Here we are!” Miriam found what she was looking for, and triumphantly returned from the depths of the cabinet with her prize, a dusty old blue case.
“Oh, it’s your old piccolo! You know you used to sound so lovely! I wonder if you can still play?”
“Heh, I haven’t seen this thing in years.” Miriam tested it, to which it gave a disapproving squawk. “...You know what, this is fine, it just needs to play enough notes for the magic to kick in. But- ARRGH! My fucking broom is still messed up from last week! Dammit Nate!”
“You can use mine.”
“I- really? Don’t you need it?”
Saphy chuckled. “Well it’s not like I’ll be needing it when the world blows up!”
“ If . If the world blows up.”
“You are very correct. Now, let’s see where those Overseers are… ooh, looks like there’s one right there in Langtree, that’s not too far from here…”
Some divining, some prepping, and some quick piccolo practice later, Miriam found herself standing on the front porch, supplies and broom at the ready.
“Now dearie, are you sure you packed everything you need? Socks, underwear, rations? Remember, you might be coming back here after finding Dream King, but some of the later ones are going to be quite a long trip. Are you sure you don’t want to bring a scarf? Wouldn’t want you getting cold out there, now!”
“Saph, I’ll be fine. I’m an adult- have been for a while.”
“Oh, that doesn’t matter,” she pinched her cheek and, in a tone of voice usually reserved for the cutest of baby kittens, said “ you’ll always be my little Mimikins !”
“Yeah, yeah, sure.” she muttered as she hopped up onto the broom, drew back, charged up, and… she hesitated.
“You sure you’ll be ok here on your own, Saph?”
“Sweetie, I’m a big girl now, I can take care of myself just fine- now come on, you have a quest to go on, journeys to travel, adventures to be had!”
Miriam nodded. “Just… stay safe, ok? I love you.”
“I love you too, sweetie. And don’t forget, you can come home at any time if you need to rest up for a bit!”
“Thanks. I’ll keep that in mind, I guess.”
And with that, she was off.
Saphy knew that it wouldn’t be long until Miriam came back, at least for a little bit- the plan had been to stop by Langtree first, figure out what to do about the monster filled cave blocking the way to the Queen of Winds after getting down the basics of what a direct meeting with an Overseer would entail, then go from there. After that would be the real adventure. Still, this house was far too quiet with just her. Too much emptiness for thoughts to brood in, for questions to build, for realities to set in...
She set up one last divination.
“Will the Earthsong be pla…”
She paused. Then, she changed her mind and asked a different question.
“Will Miriam make a friend on this quest?”
She smiled. That was all she could ask for, really. Now all that there was left to do was hope there would still be time to be spent together.