I watched as Jesiah grew up to follow in the footsteps of his mother’s husband to become a carpenter. When he looked to be twelve years old, he and his family went to the Fairwick to celebrate what the Lord God had done for them in freeing them from slavery. They called it the Passover feast. The celebration passed by in a blur, and his parents left afterward. I noticed something they did not for a long while; Jesiah was not with them. That evening when they first missed him, they began searching among family members. After they determined he was not there, they went back to Fairwick to search for him. After three days they found him in the temple of the Lord. He was with the religious teachers listening and asking them questions. His understanding and the answers he gave obviously astounded everybody who was listening. His parents questioned him and told him they had been searching for him for days.
“Why did you need to search?” Jesiah asked honestly. “Did you not know I must be in my Father’s house?”
But I could tell they did not really understand what he meant. Suddenly I heard Aloron’s voice echoing around me as Jesiah grew up in front of me.
“Jesiah was unlike any man that had ever lived. He was completely God and completely man in one. If I were to write of all the miracles he performed…well, we would be here well into the next year. I shall describe in brief only a few of the miracles God ordained to show us through his Son Jesiah. One thing to know is that Jesiah’s closest friends, the disciples, were twelve in total—three Humans, two Centaurs, two Satyrs, two Dwarves, and three Elves. Out of those twelve, two Humans and one Elf were in his inner circle, Pyotr, who was the Elf, and the Human brothers Jem and Jehan.”
I watched as Jesiah and his disciples approached a river. There was a man there, Jehan the Baptist Pyotr called him. What was a Baptist, I wondered. Then he spoke.
“I baptize you with water when you repent, but He who comes after is so much mightier than I, and I am not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit, and with fire!”
When Jehan the Baptist saw Jesiah, he froze. “You come to me to be baptized, when you should baptize me?”
Jesiah smiled. “Let it be so for now, for it is fitting for us to fulfill all God requires.”
I watched curiously as Jesiah stepped in the river and stood in front of Jehan. The Baptist lowered him into the water until he was completely submerged then brought him back up. Suddenly, the heavens opened up and I saw what Aloron called the Spirit of God descending like a dove. It alighted upon him.
“This is my beloved son, in whom I am well pleased,” a voice said. It was so powerful that I knew it could only be God’s. Before I could dwell on it, I was moved to another spot and Aloron’s voice said something about miracles.
The first miracle I saw was this. One day Jesiah was crossed over a lake and a large crowd gathered as he was there. One man came forward and called himself Jair. He pleaded with Jesiah to come and heal his dying daughter. Jesiah was walking to his house, me following eagerly, when I saw a Human Woman who had suffered from bleeding for twelve years came up. She had spent all her money on doctors and yet was still no better. In fact, she had only gotten worse. When she heard about Jesiah she managed to get near him and touched his cloak. Immediately her bleeding stopped. All this knowledge was suddenly in my head without me realizing it. This was one of the strangest visions yet.
Jesiah realized immediately that the healing power had gone out from him and questioned who had touched him. The disciples argued that there were many people crowding around him. But Jesiah was adamant. The woman, knowing that she could not go unnoticed, came forward and fell at his feet. In front of everybody, she told of what she had been suffering through and how she had been healed as soon as she’d touched him. Jesiah sent her away, saying “Go in peace. Because of your faith you are healed.”
While this was happening, someone came from Jair’s house saying, “Your daughter is dead. Leave the teacher alone.”
Jesiah assured Jair that he just needed to believe and his daughter would be healed. Only Pyotr, Jem, and Jehan and the child’s parents came in with him when they reached Jair’s house. When Jesiah rebuked the mourners, telling them the child was only sleeping, they laughed at him because they knew she was dead. Jesiah went to the child’s side and took her hand.
“Wake up, my child,” he said.
At once the girl’s life returned and she stood! Jesiah told her parents to feed her. They were overwhelmed at what had happened, but Jesiah told them not to tell anybody about it.
I was amazed but suddenly transported to another place and I saw another miracle happen like this. One day Jesiah and his disciples went off to a place to be alone and rest, but the crowds followed him there. After teaching them and healing their sick, the disciples came to Jesiah and said to him:
“Send the crowd away. It is getting late and they are hungry. Let them go and find something to eat.”
“You feed them,” Jesiah told them.
“We only have five loaves of bread and two fish!” they replied.
Jesiah took the loaves and fish and broke them, giving thanks to his Father in heaven, then gave them to his disciples to pass out among the people. After the crowds had eaten, there were twelve baskets of leftovers. There were five thousand men there, not counting women and children. I couldn’t believe it. I had watched them hand out the food, but I hadn’t noticed anything strange until at least a thousand of them had been served.
This next thing I saw was quite significant. I appeared beside a fire to see Jesiah and his disciples talking.
Jesiah asked them, “Who do the people think the Son of Man is?”
“Some say you are Elias (Information popped into my head that Elias was a prophet who defended the worship of the One True God over the idols of the pagans). Others say you are one of the other prophets of old.”
“And who do you say I am?”
Pyotr answered. “Surely you are the Son of God! The Messiah!”
Because of his answer, Jesiah promised Pyotr the keys of Heaven.
What seemed to be several days later Jesiah took his three closest disciples up a high mountain so they could be alone. As the three males watched, Jesiah suddenly changed. His face shone like the sun! And his clothes became whiter than light! Just as suddenly, Mioshye and Elias the prophet appeared beside him! They started speaking of Jesiah’s impending departure. Pyotr, who was so frightened he did not know what to say, offered to build three shelters, one for each of the men.
A cloud suddenly covered us and a voice spoke, the same voice from the river: “This is my beloved Son. Listen to him.”
The three disciples had fallen to the ground in terror. Jesiah touched them and when they looked up Jesiah was back to normal and was all alone. As they went down the mountain they were given this command.
“Do not tell anybody of what you have seen until after the Son of Man has been raised from the dead.”
I was suddenly back in the room with Aloron and Valtrak. I listened as the old Elf read something more from the scroll.
“Many more miracles happened, but these are the ones I have decided to put down in this scroll to preserve. I believe they tell part of Jesiah’s miraculous life that will convince others of his divinity. To find out what happens next:
In the temple of the Lord
Is where the next scroll is stored.
Hidden deep in the tunnels beneath the ground
Is where the key to life be found.”
Aloron stopped reading and lowered the scroll, his eyes bright. “Oh how interesting! Where is this temple?”
I looked at him. “It said it was in Fairwick.”
“Where is Fairwick?”
“It is now called Shadowlyn. It is where Nolan probably took Elthinor and the others. It is the Human capitol. It is where the Dark Ones reside,” I whispered.
We went silent for a while, contemplating what had just been read. Jesiah was more amazing than I had thought. I had been talking with the Son of God, but I had been acting as if it were normal. He was talking to me. Called me ‘child’. Said he loved me. I missed talking to him, and it had been so long since I had a dream about him.
“What are you thinking, Filynora?”
“It has been a while since I’ve seen Jesiah,” I admitted
“Wait, you have seen him?” Aloron exclaimed.
“Yeah. So have you. He’s the man in white. He just appears to me in dreams every once in a while. Though…I have not seen him since before we got captured by the Dwarves.”
“Why not?” Aloron asked. “Or do you not know?”
“I know. Nolan is my twin.”
“He kept giving me his dreams at night so I would not dream of Jesiah.”
Aloron looked at me thoughtfully. “Well you should be far enough away from him to have your own dreams again. The ability is hampered by distance.”
Hope bloomed in my heart. “Oh how I hope I will have a dream with him in it again.” I suddenly yawned. “Why am I so tired? I just slept for who knows how long!”
“Two days and you slept, but did not rest. You tossed and turned and cried out most of that time,” Aloron answered.
“I do not remember any nightmares,” I said.
“Maybe that is for the best,” Valtrak told me. “I fear what your nightmares would contain what with all you have faced.”
I yawned again and Aloron moved to put the scrolls back into their containers. He paused when they were all put up and looked at me.
“Filynora,” he started. “I am not the only Elf here. Eretren and the rest of the Followers came with me.”
“And you want to read them the scrolls,” I finished for him.
“Yes. Would you mind if I borrowed them? I shall give them back as soon as we have discussed them.”
“I would not mind at all,” I replied with a kind smile. “You shared your scroll with us. It is only right for us to share those scrolls with you.”
“Thank you,” Aloron said with a nod. “Now, Valtrak. Let us leave Filynora to get some rest.”
“Wait. I would like to talk to him alone for a moment.”
Aloron raised his eyebrows. “Alright, but do make it quick. You look as if you are about to pass out.”
I watched as Aloron hurried out to share the story as far as we had with the rest of the Followers. I knew they would be excited and eager to hear more. As for me, I was focused on the last scroll and how we would get it, but I pushed the thought of that away for the moment and focused on Valtrak.
“May I ask you something?” I asked gently.
“You just did,” Valtrak replied with a small smile. “But you may certainly ask me something else.”
“Where did you go during that battle?”
His smile faded and he looked away. The silence stretched on between us and just when I was about to speak again, he sighed and finally met my eyes.
“I am nothing but a coward Filynora.”
“I ran away. I was so scared of what was going on that I ran and hid. When they retreated I hurried to meet you again. You handed me the waterskin remember?”
I nodded and slowly sat up, straining my back as little as possible, and placed a hand on his shoulder.
“Let me tell you something, Valtrak. I am terrified every time I go into battle. Terrified that I will not make it out of the fight. Terrified that my friends will not make it out. But I trust that God knows what He’s doing. I trust in Jesiah. Mind you, sometimes it is not a conscious thought, and sometimes it is, but it keeps me going.”
Valtrak stared at me for a moment then smiled. “You continue to amaze, not only me, but everybody you meet, Filynora. I shall definitely keep that in mind next time we fight. Because we will fight again.”
“Of course. The Dark Ones are not defeated yet. I fear that that is the only way they will stop trying to get me.”
“It may also be the only way we will get the fifth scroll,” Valtrak said.
I frowned. “What do you mean?” I asked as I lay back down and tried to get comfortable beside Ember.
“Nolan told us that they read the scroll up at the top of the mountain. So he knows where the fifth scroll is. And if they went to Shadowlyn like you said, which is where the temple of God is, then he can find it.”
After that, Valtrak left me to sleep. As I was settling in, something occurred to me.
“God,” I suddenly prayed, horrified at the thought that crossed my mind. “Please do not let him destroy it. Please, my heavenly Father. Somehow I know we need what is on that scroll. We need the key to life that the hint promises. But your will be done.”