This chapter, which never got a title, was the one that needed the most work; as you’ll see, it consists only of a very brief scene and a lot of timeline entries. If this chapter were as close to complete as the others I worked on back in the day, I might have forced myself to finish it all up properly. But, then again, I might not have.

So here we open with the announcement of the Rite of Peace. Of course En Shevil runs off to find her little boyfriend, or perhaps just runs off to Mary-Sue about for a while and then he finds her. In any case…

“Hey, Dazah!” Achim cried from behind her. She turned from the board, smiling invisibly. “You saw what the new Rite is, right?” She nodded, eyebrows down. The thought of her Achim going all the way to Atlantis–an underwater city–was not at all appealing to her. “Are you coming with me?” She shook her head violently. “Aw, why not?”

She shook her head again, raising her hands in a no-way-in-Tartarus sort of gesture, and he shrugged. “Well, I’ll see you when I get back then.” He started to walk off, then stopped. “Well, will you come with me to Zante?” She started at the name, wondering what Zante could have to do with the Rite of Peace. Making a questioning gesture with her hands and shoulders, she asked him why. “I figure my friend Katrina can help me solve the water problem.”

En Shevil dismissed that with a wave of her hand, hoping her magic was powerful enough to do what she intended. She approached him and put her hands on either side of his head, then envisioned his various breathing organs. With a surge of magical power she did some quick editing, and he was ready for business.

“Whoa!” he cried, jumping back. Apparently he’d felt that. She made what she hoped was an I’m-sorry gesture, and then some swimming motions with her arms as she took a deep breath. “You mean–” began Achim with a grin. “You’re sure…”

She nodded almost hesitantly. She was, of course, not sure. But she did not want him running off to Katrina for help. “Hey, that’s great!” Achim gave her that teeth-flashing smile of his. “Thank you so much!

She nodded her acknowledgement, and waved him away. As long as he doesn’t go to Zante, she thought.

Achim goes off to swim and such, while En Shevil heads into the transporter. It was going to be another crossover, this time with the world of a different QfG fic author — what we’d arranged to happen was basically ‘En Shevil gets killed’ — but obviously that didn’t happen either.

It takes Achim until the next day to get the Rite of Peace done. While he’s working on that, after her crossover adventure, En Shevil returns to Delos seeking the Sybil’s insight on the drug. The statue does not speak to her, but something (I forget what; probably the feeling of death mentioned in chapter 17) causes her to pluck the black lotus and take it back to Silmaria. (Though nothing ever actually comes of this.)

The next day, Achim presents the Peace Statue and wins the Rite. Then my timeline says, Achim drags En Shevil around with him all day; acquires deed to Gnome Ann’s Land; dances at Gnome Ann’s Land. I assume this means that he’s dragging her around in the pursuit of the deed and such, but who really knows at this point?

What reaction I had envisioned from En Shevil seeing her erstwhile boyfriend in ladies’ clothing I don’t recall, nor in what light I was going to have that scene play. Fifteen years ago I was much more stupid about gender boundaries and stereotypes than I am now, so I don’t really like to imagine what I might have had in mind back then.

This day is also the first of En Shevil’s week as the arena champion. I don’t have anything noted for whom she’s fighting or what the outcome is, however. As I said, this is the most incomplete chapter of the final four.

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