A few days had passed and the day of Re`kyt`s departure fast approached. He had received word from a messenger a few hours ago in the morning that Mithrahc desired a meeting before he left. His trepidation was growing by the minute as he waited in the foyer of the lab complex main building. Mithrahc and the other immortals had not left the place for days and it would be novel to see one of them in a location other than a semi lit laboratory...
He sighed and started pacing. The room was deserted but for one necrontyr aide who had been stationed here to keep visitors from going any further. She was clearly not enjoying the task, all too aware of the metal monsters lurking further within the building. He waited for a further ten minutes before an ominous noise began steadily growing louder. Footsteps, hard metal feet against a hard metal floor. Re`kyt turned and inhaled deeply as the door hissed open and the hulking form of an immortal walked through, ducking the now too low doorway as he entered the foyer.
‘Re`kyt, old friend.’ It called, and the former medtek recognised the metallic tinged voice of his lord Mithrahc.
‘Your Majesty, I am here as summoned.’ Re`kyt said with a bow. ‘What do you need of me?’
‘Rise, my good friend.’ Mithrahc replied. His voice gave the sense of familiarity and friendship a stark contrast to the leering skeletal mask his new gigantic body wore. ‘There is no need for you to feel any supplication before me.’
‘It is only proper, Your Majesty.’ Re`kyt said, standing. ‘I am but a loyal servant after all. You summoned me to discuss my upcoming departure?’
‘Yes.’ Mithrahc replied. ‘It will be you that delivers news of our immortalization to the kingdom of Sekra-Teph. You must convince him that this is the way forward.’
‘I`m sure once his crypteks review the data presented to them they will agree.’ Re`kyt nodded. ‘But what am I to tell Sekra himself?’
‘Whatever you need to.’ Mithrahc replied with a low metallic laugh. ‘He is not a fool I`m sure. Any necrontyr will meet the news of immortalization with nothing short of hope. Have you given word to your family?’
‘Of my departure? Yes.’ The ambassador replied. ‘They will be fine for the duration.’
‘Have you considered taking them with you?’ Mithrahc asked. ‘Ey is retired from the labs after all, and Ayet would surely benefit from seeing the stars. Do not fret over logistical matters. You have my blessing to proceed with this, and my authority to make it so.’
‘Truly?’ Re`kyt was a little taken back, but the more he considered it then and there the harder it became to resist the urge to follow the Royarch`s suggestion. ‘Thank you My Lord, I will make to offer as soon as I see them.’
‘Good.’ Mithrahc nodded. ‘Then I will update you now with the rest of your task. Following your presentation, I want you to liaise with Sekra and tell me of his intentions. For if he chooses not to subject himself and his kingdom to immortalization, he may incur the ire of the gods. The Messenger and the Weaver of Illusion in particular will not be pleased. It would be wise to make him aware of this.’
‘I will Sire.’ Re`kyt replied.
‘Furthermore, once confirmation is received of their willingness to comply, I will embark upon travel to the system myself.’ Mithrahc continued. ‘I will bring Alkvar and Nayten and we will demonstrate the military applications of the technology ourselves. Seprin has devised many new artefacts in this time, and Sekra will find a valuable ally in the Kingdom of Mithrahc.’
‘By your will.’ Re`kyt answered.
* * *
Ey sung softly as she swept her hand across the plants leaves. They were healthy, this she could tell by touch, and in a matter of months they would be bearing fruit. Ayet was visiting his friends this afternoon so she would have the house to herself until Re`kyt got home. She sighed and held back a single tear as she thought of the time she was about to be without him. Travel between kingdoms was a matter of months and the nature of his task meant he could be away for a year, or even longer. Ey was no stranger to the tediousness of politics, even when time was precious these things could take far too long.
She crouched and inspected the roots of the plant by digging her hand just under the soil. They were firm but wiry as they should be, and likely extended several metres under the ground. Convinced that this tree was as it should be, she moved onto the next. Thus was her routine from day to day, maintaining her sanity by essentially reliving her younger days. What more could she do until Re`kyt was also allowed to retire? In truth she would give up all this fulfilment simply for the chance to spend more time with her husband and child.
But she would not prevent Ayet from living his own life, after all time was limited and a necrontyr could ill afford to fritter away their lives on pointless and selfish endeavours when the betterment of the civilisation itself took precedence.
And yet, here she was tending to plants that had been proven useless. Sometimes she wondered why she had been allowed to do this when she was still fit to serve in a cryptek`s lab. She shook her head in exasperation and went back inside. With nothing better to do, she simply lay down on her bed and let sleep take over...
The sound of footsteps woke her from her nap and she stirred. Rousing herself, she stood and walked slowly out to where Re`kyt had stopped to lean against the kitchen countertop. He looked up and smiled softly when he saw her.
‘How was your day?’ She asked. ‘Any news on when you`re leaving?’ She was anxious of him being gone but at the same time she wanted some kind of clarity.
‘Yes actually.’ He said, still smiling. ‘But I received some other news as well. Lord Mithrahc gave me the authority to make certain arrangements.’ He paused, waiting to gauge her reaction.
‘What are you saying?’ She asked, her curiosity piqued.
‘Would you like to come with me?’ Re`kyt asked suddenly. ‘Mithrahc said I can take you with me. You`d be given the same clearance as me and I`d finally be able to tell you everything. And Ayet would love to see the other kingdoms I`m sure!’
Ey was stunned into silence. In mere moments her mind raced, from thoughts of being alone to thoughts of being left here forever. Thoughts of going with him, thoughts of being killed in battle. It was no secret that Sekra-Teph`s kingdom was close to an active warzone and engagements were frequent. There was a very real danger of seeing combat, but at the same time she knew there would always be somewhere safe for Ayet to stay. Most prominent in her mind throughout all of this was fear. Not the fear of dying, the fear of losing something. Rather it was the simple fear of being alone.
Taking a deep breath and meeting Re`kyt`s gaze, she nodded.
--- --- ---
Thanks for bearing with me. I really wanted to establish Ey`s character before I went too far. So from the next installment onwards, the plot will begin moving again.