The Last Tale of Yajikali

Chapter XXVI - Regrets Old and New

by Charles Matthias

Cover | Contents | Prologue | Book I | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | Interlude I
Book II | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | Interlude II
Book III | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42 | 43 | 44 | 45 | 46 | 47 | 48 | Interlude III
Book IV | 49 | 50 | 51 | 52 | 53 | 54 | 55 | 56 | 57 | 58 | 59 | 60 | 61 | 62 | 63 | 64 | 65
66 | 67 | 68 | 69 | 70 | 71 | 72 | 73 | 74 | 75 | Epilogue

“What was that?” Lindsey asked, his words the first uttered since Charles’s speech brought all of them to awestruck silence. “What you just said. What was it?”

Charles glanced back at the woodcutter and shrugged. “Just something I was supposed to say if...”

“Silence!” Andares commanded in a whisper.

All eyes were drawn to figure of Qan-af-årael. With deliberate regard, he stood a little taller and began to speak in the Åelven tongue. His words soothed the ears; they sang like a bittersweet melody played upon cello. The Åelves all swayed like trees bending under a strong wind as they listened with upturned faces to his words. And yet, the Keepers understood none of what was said. Nor could they even discern what it might mean. Except that it must have been sad, for when his words were finally finished, all of them appeared filled with a terrible grief.

“What’s he saying?” Kayla whispered softly to Abafouq, but even the Binoq could only shrug his shoulders.

The ancient Åelf’s eyes settled upon them with calm serenity. “Friends of Metamor, forgive my rudeness in speaking a tongue you did not know. But the words I said had to be said, just as the words Charles spoke, had to be said. My people live very long lives. Formality is one of the sinews that binds our society together. It is not something easily forsaken.”

He held up his hands and smiled fondly. “I am Qan-af-årael, Lord of Colours of Ava-shavåis. I welcome you to our city. It is your city for this night. You will be fed and given places to sleep. You have no reason to fear here, for no evil can touch you in this place. Andares will show you where you will stay.

“And now I invite Zhypar Habakkuk the Felikaush to join me for a time in my tower. There are things we two must speak of now that we could never do before. We will return when we are finished and I will tell the rest of you what road lies ahead.”

Habakkuk did not appear surprised. He did not look altogether pleased either. Slowly, he lowered his head in respect, and then began to walk-hop up the long stairs to the tower entrance. The other Åelf all backed away from Qan-af-årael as he turned to lead the kangaroo inside. When the two of them passed beneath the arch, the shadows swallowed them up.

“Okay,” Lindsey said, his voice a low growl, “I want to know what is going on. Who was that? Why did you say what you did? And what does he want with Zhypar?”

Charles lifted one paw and shook his head. “Just calm down, Lindsey, we are in no danger here. That was Qan-af-årael, the oldest Åelf alive. I don’t know how old he is really, but he’s older than many of the dragons living in the Metamor Valley. Maybe all of them.”

A smile cracked his stony muzzle. “As to what I said, I wish I knew. I was here in this city once before, and Qan-af-årael taught me to say those words to him when next we met.”

“You’ve been here before?” Jessica asked incredulously. “When were you going to tell us? And when were you here before?”

“Just now,” Charles admitted. “I confess I did not expect to come back this way. I have suspected this was our destination ever since we emerged from the mountains. As to when I was here before, it was in my last few months as a human.”

“Just before you came to Metamor?” James asked, eyes wide.

The rat nodded. “That’s right. As you know, I am a Sondecki of the Black. The White of my order was a man named Brothus. He corrupted the honourable goals of my order, and so after I killed an innocent man on Brothus’s orders, I fled to Galendor. I did not know where I would go, but I knew that the Sondeckis would send somebody after me. Rogues are not tolerated in my order. We have many secrets that our enemies yearn to discover.

“I had no intent on betraying my order’s secrets, but I knew Brothus wouldn’t care. I did not know who would be sent, but I wanted to make sure that they never found me. I wandered through Pyralis, and even Sathmore for a time, before I came to the Midlands. All that time I heard whispers of the strange powers of the Åelfwood and so eventually decided to risk a journey into the enchanted woods.”

“Why not go to Metamor?” Kayla suggested. “It’s a far better place to be lost.”

Charles smiled and nodded. “Which is what I did eventually. But at the time, news of The Battle of Three Gates and the curses cast upon our city had not yet reached Pyralis or many parts of Sathmore. It was still only a rumour that most treated with derision. The Åelfwood seemed my best chance to escape from the Sondeckis.”

“So you found this place?” Jessica asked.

“No, I did not. It found me. I had quickly grown lost in the forest. After a week my food supplies ran out, and I could find nothing to feed myself. There was plenty of water, but even the rivers held no fish. And I didn’t dare try to set any traps. I went to sleep one night in a small alcove beneath the roots of a tree, and when I woke in the morning, I was in this city.”

“You mean somebody found you in your sleep and brought you here?” Lindsey asked.

“Possibly. Or the forest could simply move beneath you as it is rumoured to do. I don’t really know, and the Åelves wouldn’t tell me. Most of them were very unhappy that I was here at all. Some wanted to kill me outright. But word had come down amongst them that their Lord of Colours wished to see me. And that is when I met Qan-af-årael.

“I was not allowed in his tower, but he came down to meet with me. He asked me why I had come to the Åelfwood, and I truthfully explained my situation. He then suggested a game between us. Should I win, the Åelves would offer me protection. Should I lose, I would be escorted from the city. He even allowed me to select the game.”

James let out a chuckling bray. “And you lost?”

Charles grinned even wider. “I won. And for two weeks I stayed in the city, learning many things, even a few words of their tongue, but only a few. Their secrets are jealously guarded, and one of those secrets is their tongue. I spoke with Qan-af-årael many times, but rarely with any other Åelves.

“Then, one day, Qan-af-årael told me he knew a way that I could be safe from the Sondeckis and yet live amongst my own people. Naturally, this offer was interesting to me. For as fascinating a place as this is, I had no desire to stay here forever. How could I? I would be a brief curiosity to this long-lived race. I may have been on the run, but I felt I could still do some good in this world. It was then that I learned of Metamor, and of what the curses would do to any who stayed there for more than a week.

“I was still concerned about the Sondecki sent to capture me. Qan-af-årael told me of the black robed man floundering in the woods. He assured me my fellow Sondecki would be fine, he would just be trapped in the woods long enough for me to reach Metamor and my freedom.” Charles chuckled. “It is ironic in some sense, as the man following me was one of my childhood friends, Jerome Krabbe. I did not learn this until last year when he finally tracked me to Metamor.”

Charles held up one paw to forestall the next question. “But, I made it to Metamor safely. It was not even a year after the curses had been laid, and the city was still being rebuilt. It was worse than after the Winter Attack, as we all had to adjust to our new bodies. When I became a rat, I felt some measure of relief. Who would ever look at a rat and think him a warrior?” He paused and narrowed his eyes. “But I have forgotten something. Ah yes. What I said to Qan-af-årael.

“Just before I left this city, oh, I guess it would be eight years ago now, Qan-af-årael took me aside and gave me instructions. He made me memorize that little series of words in his own tongue, and told me that should I ever see him again, I was to speak those words loud enough that all could hear. He stressed how important it was for me to say it, and then bid me farewell. I honestly thought I would never see him again, but here we are. It looks precisely as I remember it.”

“What does it mean?” Jessica pressed, her wing tips fluttering.

“I don’t know. Several time I tried to look it up in the Metamor library, but I could never find anything that would tell me.”

Andares’s voice was distant, but it was sure. “Roughly, it means time of leavetaking. There is more to it than that, but I will not utter any more of it now.”

“Is something wrong, Andares?” Kayla asked, stepping closer to the Åelf. He nodded but said nothing.

“Well,” James said, shifting from one hoof to the other. “You said you were here before, Charles? I’d like to see more of this place. Could you show us around some?”

The rat laughed warmly. “Yes, I can. To some extent at least. There is much I never learned. But first, it would be good to put our things somewhere safe. Andares?”

Slowly, the Åelf began to nod, his eyes still distracted with something distant. “I will show you where you can leave them. Come.” He turned and headed towards a series of low buildings constructed in a maze of vines and colourful sheets. With eyes wide in wonder, the Keepers followed him.

The climb up the tower steps took a very long time. If they had not spent the last two months scaling dangerous mountain passes or underground caverns, Habakkuk would have been winded after the first ten minutes. Yet after what must have been at least a half-hour’s climb, he felt only the exertion of a good exercise.

During the walk, though Habakkuk had asked him why he had been selected for this honour, Qan-af-årael would not speak of it. Instead, he asked him of their journey there. He was intrigued by Charles’s metamorphosis into a creature of living stone, and was saddened at the treatment of the Binoq to Abafouq. He did not seem concerned by the Runecaster who chased them through the mountains, assuring Habakkuk that he knew of her and was taking the precautions necessary to prevent any from following them again. Nor did he express any surprise at those who the kangaroo had selected for this journey.

“It is not as if you are the only one who can read the signs the future provides us. The future is built from the past. We lay the signs by our own actions, my good Felikaush,” Qan-af-årael had chided him gently as they ascended. Habakkuk had possessed no rejoinder for that bit of truth.

It was not until they reached Qan-af-årael’s chambers at the top that the venerable Åelf made plain his interest in the kangaroo. They emerged from the stairs into a room with only two chairs in it. One was in the centre, bedecked by flowers cut from emerald. The other was against one of the circular walls, and there was but a single arm on one side. Habakkuk could see that the left arm had not been broken off; judging by the masonry, it had never existed.

The room had a circular dome in which a depiction of the night sky was painted. Judging by the lay of the stars it appeared to be night, but the constellations looked slightly off, as if the painter had misjudged their positions by the merest fractions of an inch. Along the walls frescoes had been painted, each of them depicting some historical event. He recognized the golden blade of Yajakali standing amidst three pillars. It was also emblazoned on another wall sitting inside the censer atop the dais; nine figures held hands and danced in a circle about the three weapons.

“Who painted this?” Habakkuk asked as he slowly stepped into the centre of the room. Light streamed in from a single door that led out onto a broad ivory balcony. It shimmered as the leaves far above swayed in the wind.

“I did,” Qan-af-årael said softly, slender fingers tracing across lines with the familiarity of a lover touching their beloved. “Almost three thousand years ago I built this place. I was young then. Nearly every day of my life since has been spent here, studying, learning, preparing. The day for which all of my labours have been spent is upon us, Zhypar; I am ready to do what I must.”

Habakkuk nodded slowly as his eyes tried to take in all that he saw. His side began to ache where Yonson had struck it three months ago in the fight in the Belfry. He pressed a paw to the wound and took a long deep breath. “We all do what we must,” he said after the pain subsided. “It is all we can do.”

Qan-af-årael stepped to the balcony and strode into the sunlight. His robes glowed with a thousand different hues as the light danced around each and every fold of cloth. “Tell me, Zhypar. In your life, is there anything you truly regret?”

Habakkuk paused for a moment before joining the elder figure on the balcony. From the ivory railing he could not see the bottom of the forest, but only the spires of redwood that stretched ever upwards and ever downwards. If he didn’t know better, he would have sworn that all of the world was vertical.

“People regret the things that cause them pain, or deny them some hoped-for dream,” the kangaroo replied. “I regret... I regret that I could not save my people from the Ebon Dragon. I knew it was coming, Qan-af-årael. When I was young, I had visions of my city in flame, people I knew and cared about dead or dying. I told them what was coming, I told them of the destruction that we faced if we didn’t protect ourselves, but the elders would do nothing to save themselves.”

Qan-af-årael said nothing, so Habakkuk continued. “I had four brothers and two sisters. I was the fifth child in my family. We were all Felikaush, and my siblings also had the ability. Not so great as I, but they could see things that had not yet happened from time to time. I loved them all, and I love them still. But after speaking of my vision to the elder Felikaush, they forbade me from speaking of it to anyone else. They especially forbade me from warning my family. I was not to save anyone. Not anyone.

“I cannot tell you how hard it was. They had dreams. My eldest brother often spoke of becoming a blacksmith. So simple an occupation, yes, but he’d been an apprentice for three years already when I had my vision. He never became a smith in his own right. My younger sister wanted to sing and dance in the theatre. We had a theatre in Fellos. It was considered the envy of all in Sonngefilde. As was our library. And our university.

“And in one terrible moment, it was all swept away. The Ebon Dragon... they wanted to dominate the eastern half of Sonngefilde. Politically, militarily, it doesn’t make a difference. Fellos would not give them what they wanted. Not that Hevagn or Eavey, or even Stuthgansk did either. But those cities were all protected by mages. A quick easy victory would give the Ebon practice for the more difficult battles to come later. And so they chose Fellos.”

Habakkuk took a heavy breath. Tears were standing in his eyes. He could still see their faces. His brothers and sisters. Nyvar, Dinee, Calpar, and the rest. Years of practice allowed him to shove them from his mind. “I was sent away, the only Felikaush meant to survive the sacking of Fellos. They gave me a wagon-load of books and some funds and sent me west. I travelled, posing as a merchant of rare books. But all the time I wished I was still in Fellos, and that all of their dreams could have come true.”

Qan-af-årael nodded slowly, but did not look at him. “There was nothing you could have done to save them. They were fated to die. Even if they had listened to you and prepared the fortifications, the Ebon Dragon would still have slaughtered them. Some of us fight death as if he were our enemy. Others embrace him knowing that he is but our shared destiny. All peoples of this world share two things in common: death and life. We will all die some day, no matter what we do. It is an inescapable condition, even for those whose lives stretch on century after century as with my people.

“And we also share life. Each of us is alive at some time or another. It was not our choice to live, but it is our choice what we do with our lives. Your people chose to meet death as they knew they must. Not fighting, but willingly accepting it. You could not have saved them. Do not regret their death, for you can only regret things that you could have changed. Is there anything in your life that you had the power to change, but failed to do? Do you have any true regrets?”

Habakkuk did not have to think on it. There was one wound in his life that had never healed, and never would. “Yes, there is something. I fell in love once. Ten years ago while I was travelling through Arabarb. The land there was still free then; Nasoj would not come with his minions for another two years. I was injured when my cart wheel broke and fell over. A local stonecutter took me in, and his wife and daughter tended my wounds. The daughter – she was taller and broader than I, and possessed a wickedly sharp tongue. But she was the most beautiful woman I had ever seen.”

A smile crossed his muzzle, though an unhappy one. “I fell in love with her, and she with me. I wrote her poetry, some of it may actually have been good. I knew that if I married her and we had children, they would be Felikaush, and my people would not cease to be.

“But events transpired too quickly. I thought there would be time. I wanted to do things properly. When I was fully healed, I returned south to see to my affairs in the Midlands. The next thing I know, Nasoj had invaded Arabarb. I took it upon myself to see that she was brought to Metamor. I thought there she would be safe. I could have married her then. We would still have had time. But I delayed. I don’t know why now. I really don’t. I saw future things – already I glimpsed the awakening of Yajakali. Perhaps that was what occupied my mind. It is all a blur to me now.”

He shook his head slowly, eyes closing. Tears ran down his cheeks. “And then Nasoj attacked Metamor, and my beloved, the one woman who I had ever longed to call wife was changed into a man. It was worse than seeing her dead. No longer could I hope to have children with her. Yet she was still alive. For a few years I stayed away, the sight of my love as a male was too painful to bear. But there was one possibility. If I went to Metamor, there was a chance, one in three, that I would be made female. It was not what I had ever expected, but we could still be together then.

“And so, four years ago, I went to Metamor, told him of what I hoped, and waited for the curse to claim me. It was not long before my hopes were dashed. At the first sight of this fur you see on me, I knew it was over. I did not even care what I became after that. But I was also doomed to see him, and know that my people, the Felikaush, were going to die with me.”

He looked up at the pearl-white face of the Åelf. “Do you know what it is like to be the last of your line, and to know that it will pass into the pages of history with your death? Perhaps it will be forgotten altogether. Either way, after me, there will never be another Felikaush. That is my regret. I should have married her when I had the chance. Now, it will never be.”

Qan-af-årael began to nod slowly, golden eyes turned to regard the kangaroo. “Your love is not in vain, Zhypar. No love ever is. Though it may never be requited or truly fulfilled, it is not in vain.”

“When I dwell on it, I begin to wonder if the Canticles are not right when they say that all is vanity.” A bitter laugh escaped his throat. “Do not fear for me, Qan-af-årael. I know better than to give in to despair. I have strived long and hard to see that evil is defeated. If I do not, then my people will have died for nothing. I will not let the sacrifices of my people be in vain.” He took a deep breath and brushed the last tear from his cheek. “And what of you? What regrets do you have?”

Qan-af-årael turned away and rested his hands upon the ivory railing. “When we came to this place, I showed you how I spent the whole of my life. I have known this moment was coming since my earliest days. Known it, and dreaded it. The greatest mistake in all of my people’s history, and I was its scholar, its soothsayer. When I brought you into my tower you asked me why I selected you. It was to show you this. To show you how long I have prepared, how much I have dedicated to it. What happened eleven-thousand years ago must never happen again.”

He turned away from the balcony and strode inside the tower room. Habakkuk watched him but did not follow. “In that time, I have also observed my people draw back from the many places around this world that we once called home. Carethedor, Yerebey, and so many others. All were abandoned or destroyed, until our only home was this forest. It is your race that has come to dominate the world we once strode like giants. My own people are divided, and sometimes years will pass before those in Ava-shavåis will speak to those in Taralas.

“I wish that I could have healed the rift between our people. As Lord of Colours, I could have made some effort, some gesture to bring us together, fully united. Instead, that task must fall to another. I have spent my life upon stopping Yajakali. I cannot now spend it on this. But I often wonder, perhaps there was time in my youth, time that I could have given to this task too. But I did not see it. And so I did nothing while our people grew further and further apart.”

Qan-af-årael let out a long sigh and curled his fingers about one of the emerald flowers. “We all have things in our lives that we regret. Regret is part of the nature of life. We yearn to go back in time, change the past, undo our mistakes, but that is forbidden to us. And it is better that way. We have one opportunity in each moment, not two or three. One. And then what is done is done.”

Habakkuk began to nod. “Yes, what you say is true. Knowing what may come does not help me any in making decisions. I still struggle with them, and hope I have made the right one.”

“As do we all.” Qan-af-årael straightened and closed his eyes. “I feel what needed to be done here has been accomplished. Let us return. What I have next to say is for all to hear.”

“Of course. But if I may make one suggestion. Let us wait for a few minutes. It is a long flight of steps to take.”

Qan-af-årael smiled to him. “Yes, I will prepare you something soothing to drink. We will rest a short time first. Today of all days we can afford a bit of time to rest. We will not have time for it later.”

Unfortunately, being a prophet, Habakkuk knew that he was right.

“And I thought the bathhouse in Metamor was impressive,” Kayla remarked as they left a large grove of vines and short trees in which was sculpted ivory towers and terraces overlooking a small hot spring bubbling up from the earth and spilling into an eddy in the river. The bathhouse had been completely empty when they arrived a short time ago, as if the Åelves had sensed their coming and left through some other means of egress the rat did not know about.

Charles laughed and stretched his limbs. Even after leaving all the saddlebags and travelling gear in the sheltered area Andares had shown him, he had stayed in his centaur-like form. Ever since he had become rock, it just felt more natural to stand on four legs than two. It was a small way he could use to distinguish between this and his fleshy body. Plus, he had no idea how shifting into a two-legged stance would effect the vine growing out of his back. If he damaged it, what would the forest do to him then?

“I bathed there while I stayed here. It was so tranquil, I think you could drown peacefully in there if you aren’t careful. Now, let me show you something that... well, attempt to show you something at least. This way, right down this little incline.” They followed the rat down a slope between two hills. Down at the bottom they could see some sort of pavilion.

“What’s so special about this?” Lindsey asked.

“Just watch,” Charles said with a grin.

The trail sloped downwards towards the pavilion. But as they neared, more and more of the brush began to impede their vision. The rat’s grin grew wider. Slowly, the slope began to level off, and then turn upwards. Kayla let out a chuff of surprise. “Wait, I thought it was down the slope.”

“Oh yes, turn around,” the rat advised.

They did, and there down at the bottom of the slope behind them was the strange pavilion. “What the?” Lindsey said. “We were walking towards it. How’d it get behind us?”

“That’s what I wanted to show you,” Charles said with a slight chuckle. “I spent hours trying to reach that pavilion using every trick I know. I even climbed through the trees. It didn’t matter. As soon as I lost sight of it, I was doomed.”

“Well, it’s downhill, so if you just keep going downhill,” James reasoned.

“I tried that too. You get to the point where there is nothing but level ground all around you no matter which way you turn. Once you are going uphill, the pavilion is back behind you.” The rat shrugged after a moment. “The Åelves wouldn’t tell me what it is either. Even if Andares had come with us instead of with Abafouq and Guernef, he would not tell us. I think it is some special holy place.”

“Remarkable,” Jessica said. Her beak was cracked in an avian grin. “I can see magic all over this place, but I don’t recognize any of it. I could spend my entire life here, but I still wouldn’t understand it.”

“Here’s another thing I don’t understand,” Lindsey said. He was staring off in a different direction. “How exactly did that head Åelf’s tower get here?”

They each turned and stared up at the massive alabaster tower built around the huge redwood. It perched at the top of the incline, the stairs and archway before them just as it had been before. But the landscape was different from when they’d seen it before. Clearly different.

Charles shrugged a bit, “That isn’t the first time it’s moved.”

“I’ve never seen the like,” James said slack-jawed.

“Oh really? And you’ve lived at Metamor your whole life?”

The donkey lowered his ears and grumbled, “Well, that’s all inside.”

“The tower would not have appeared if we are not meant to be there. Come.” The rat led them up to the long slope to the steps. On the far side of the steps Abafouq, Guernef and Andares stood. Abafouq was the only one with a bewildered expression. “I see it found you too,” he called over to them. Andares smiled faintly.

Before he could set his paw upon the ivory step, two figures emerged from the arch. One silhouette was immediately recognizable as the kangaroo. He looked sullen and distracted, his eyes barely passing over them. The other was the ancient Åelf Qan-af-årael. Charles and the rest stopped, their faces turned upwards toward their host.

Qan-af-årael smiled warmly to each of them, his pearl-grey face vaguely sombre. “My friends, I am very glad that you have each come here. It was a dangerous journey, but you have made it thus far. Yet I tell you today that your journey is only half over.”

“Half over?” Lindsey called out as he put one foot on the first step. “How much further must we go?”

“On the morrow you will leave this city and head south for the Flatlands. There you will be met by a friend who will have secured a safe and quick passage across the Steppe. But we cannot delay any longer, for the road is long and we have little time left. All will be decided upon the night of the Winter Solstice. If we are not there at the appointed hour, all will be lost.”

Jessica fluttered her wings in exasperation. “Three more months? And where must we go?”

Qan-af-årael met her gaze. “To the Chateau Marzac, built upon the ruins of Jagoduun. And from here on, I will accompany you.”

Even Andares appeared surprised by this. “You?” Abafouq said. “But you are so old.”

“Nevertheless, it is my appointed task to join you in this quest. We must reach the Chateau Marzac by the Winter Solstice or the Underworld will take us all.” He held up one hand to silence them. “On our journey, I will answer any questions you may have. For this evening, you are to forget them and to enjoy my home. I will see you again at the sun’s rise.”

And without another word, Qan-af-årael went back inside the tower. Habakkuk stood there like a marionette with its strings cut. Only after the Åelf disappeared within did he appear to regain any life. He came down the steps carefully, and then nodded to each of them. “Well, now we know where we are to head.”

“Marzac?” Jessica snapped testily. “But if we go there we’ll be corrupted like those mages we fought in the belltower!”

Andares spread his hands wide. “If my master deems we must go to Marzac, then to Marzac we must go. If any could divine a way to protect us from the evil corruptive power of that place, then it is he.”

Guernef squawked abruptly, though through the strident cries they could make out intelligent words. “All of us must cast what charms we have to forestall the corruption that will surely take us. If we fail, we will be servants of the enemy.”

Jessica nodded slowly. “I will do what I can then.”

“I have a question,” James said, lifting one hoof-like hand. “If we are to stay here tonight, then I’d like to know where I can find something to eat. I’m famished!”

Andares’s smile was full of good humour at last. “Come with me. I will see you each sated for the night.”

And he was right.

Cover | Contents | Prologue | Book I | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | Interlude I
Book II | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | Interlude II
Book III | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42 | 43 | 44 | 45 | 46 | 47 | 48 | Interlude III
Book IV | 49 | 50 | 51 | 52 | 53 | 54 | 55 | 56 | 57 | 58 | 59 | 60 | 61 | 62 | 63 | 64 | 65
66 | 67 | 68 | 69 | 70 | 71 | 72 | 73 | 74 | 75 | Epilogue

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