“Probably.” the beast master smirked, but was clearly happy that Ferlon opened an entrance to the spire. At the height of their chests the lowest steppes of the spiraling stairs ended, the rest had collapsed together with the exterior wall. Skillful each of the two men climbed upon the steppes and started ascending.

“My name is Jelendor.” the beast-master introduced himself after they had been climbing the stairs for several minutes, well outside earshot of the crowd at the base of the spire.

The staircase opened up to an open platform, four columns held the onion shaped roof.

At the eastern opening of the platform sat a bird, as tall as man, its feathers seemed to vanish flame like into the ethereal. Immediately it shied away from Ferlon as he tried to approach it.

Carefully Jelendor inched towards it, clearly showing his expertise in dealing with the Phoenix, the Phoenix did not flinch. Gently he touched the Phoenix’ head and neck, leaned his forehead against the birds.

Reluctantly the Phoenix stretched forth one of it’s claws and released a parchment to Jelendors waiting hand. Skillfully Jelendor rolled the parchment to Ferlon while picking a piece of meat from his pocket, feeding it to the Phoenix. “You’re a beauty.” he mumbled, studying the birds feathers. “You can come with me and rest amongst your own?” the bird leaned in and sniffed noisily at Jelendors clothes. Suddenly it lifted it’s head up in the sky and screamed joyfully. “It’s over there, in the densely grown garden.” he pointed out of the spire at a huge garden at the outskirts of the town. Fluently the Phoenix turned away and flew to the patch of dense forest in the lighter forest of the town. “Are you truly alone as a beast-master?” Jelendor looked up at Ferlon who had walked up to him. “Not really, of course the Phoenix’ and my other animal friends are there, also my wife and children.” Ferlon felt slight discomfort.

A wife and children.

He had not found the time in his life to found a family.

Thinking about it he felt that most women were not the slightest interested in a man who meditated in the shrines, the sanctums, the temples.

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