Tothelea: Epilogue

The iron glowed, soft and red upon the anvil.  Trevor studied it with
practiced eye, and struck it.  The hammer blow rang out, and the iron bent
obediently as he had intended.  He struck it a few more times, each blow
pushing the metal to its final form.  Trevor placed the iron back in the
furnace, and pumped the bellows.

I should really find some young lad to help me with this, he thought.  When
the iron was hot enough, he worked it some more.

The door to his smithy swung open.  Trevor stayed his hammer, and looked.  A
child's head peeked in.

"Papa, suppertime!" said the little girl.

"I'm almost finished, Harmony.  Plug your ears!"

She stuck her fingers in her ears, the heels of her hands pressed against her
chin.  Trevor raised the hammer, trying to conceal his grin.  He held it
there, prolonging the suspense, then gave his daughter a playful look.  She
squealed and giggled in delight.  Trevor loved the sound of her laugh.  He let
the hammer fall.  She watched, several more blows, until he set the iron on
bricks to cool and hung his hammer on the wall.

He took his apron off, and walked to the door.  Harmony grabbed his hand,
pulling him to their house.  She never minded the sooty blackness of his
hands.  "Come on, Papa!"

Trevor let her lead him home.  He looked to the clear evening sky, and then to
the flowers that grew in profusion around their home.  He smiled, knowing who
had put them there.  It pleased him to think of his daughter's namesake
visiting once a year.  Spending just a little extra time here, checking on her
brother, and leaving her mark for him to see.  It was not a proper visit-he
longed to introduce his new family to what remained of his old one-but it
warmed his heart just the same.

They stepped inside the house, and Trevor took a deep breath.  "Mmmm!" he
said, "what smells so good?"

Harmony giggled again.  It was one of her favorite little games.  "Mama made
lamb!  And I helped!"

"Then I'm sure it will be wonderful!"  He scooped his little girl off the
ground and held her high in the air.  Her feet kicked gleefully as he lowered
her into a hug.  He set her down, saying "Go help your Mama set the table,

Trevor sat by the fire, resting a moment while supper was served.  His eyes
drifted up to the iron staff, hanging on the wall above the hearth.  A bit of
rust dulled the metal.  I should polish that up again, Trevor thought.
Evening light glinted from a small nick in the staff, where someone had once
tried to cleave through it with a sword.

"Come eat, Trev," his wife called.  Trevor moved to the table.  The lamb was,
indeed, delicious, and Trevor said so.  Harmony giggled in pleasure,and set to
telling him all about the events of the day.  He listened, but his mind kept
drifting back to his youth, and the things he had seen and done.  Sometimes he
still had had trouble believing they had really happened.

When the meal was finished, he swept Harmony off her feet again while her
mother washed the dishes.

"Time for bed, Harmony."

He helped her into her pajamas, and carried her to her little bed.

"Tell me a story?" she asked, rubbing her eyes.  He gave her a smile and
kissed her forehead.

"A story?  All right.  Let me tell you about the Queen of Spring, and the
mortal who loved her."