Past the training courses was the entrance to the main part of Native Lakes, though the guards were farther out to make sure that the village would have ample warning if there was any danger.
At the very end of the training fields was black grass to the left, right, and straight ahead. My class and I went straight and quickly came to the waterfalls. Even before I saw them I could hear the water and laughter coming from them.
To my right and left were waterfalls where Drethiveal that Avealed into water animals could rest. It was usual for Dreth to live in environments that the creatures they Avealed into could survive. But that wasn't always the case, hence the waterfalls were here.
"Ralph," A woman said, a Narwhal horn where her nose should be. "We have the weapons. Can you wait one moment, sir, we were expecting you a little later."
Quickly the woman, and a few others, climbed the waterfalls to get to the weapon storage.
I saw my students' impatience but this had to be done. It was safer if weapons were limited. Inside Native Lakes those that could Aveal into predators were given no extra weapons. Those who hadn't learned to Aveal, or didn't Aveal something that could fight, were given daggers.
We were smart about weapons, not stupid or ignorant.
On top of the left waterfalls, both were split by black grass, a woman had Avealed partially as to have Manta ray wings. She spread them wide and glided down to land in front of me, three more Drethiveal walked to get to my group, and handed me my bow and arrows.
"You can control the density of your wings," I said as I adjusted my quiver on my back. "Don't think many can do that."
"Nope," She said with a smile.
"And she plans to waste her talents." A man replied. "She wants to go off with one of the traveling bards instead of serving on an Atlas."
I merely nodded and continued on with my students. I didn't need to waste any time by getting distracted by an argument. While focusing on where I was going, I listened to my students talking about the underwater cities that the man had mentioned. Others talked about how they would Aveal as well as the woman one day.
Following the black grass, I went right to leave Native Lakes. I could lead my group of students out of Native Lakes the other way, but I didn't want to bother the guards in their own special barracks. It wouldn't be very polite to do that.
Going right we soon got to the two active guards. They were on a little path not indicated by black grass. Behind them was a dead end where they could sleep or go to the bathroom in private.
"Ordo and Caballus," I said with a bow and made sure my students did the same. "Is the day calm?"
"Yes, young man." Tolk replied with a smile.
Tolk Ordo was the more impressive of the two. He had Avealed himself so that it looked like he was a centaur. His weapon of choice was a bow and arrow. The rumor was that he chose that so he would better resemble a centaur. I heard he was very light hearted when not on duty.
"For once it's calm." Nadia replied, avoiding the stares now directed at her.
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