Today is the day I am to leave the Guild, how exciting.
Before all that though I must not forget to write that yesterday I had a visitor to my rooms. She was the Whispering Woman that Raven had referred to in the notes she left me. I can only reiterate that Angaewen has the most calming effect, it was as if the energy in the room adjusted itself to her being. Apparently she is to travel with me. Well, not with me exactly. I am not altogether sure I understand. She may not be physically present but she will always be there, watching over me. I really have no idea what that means but am pleased that I will have a protector of sorts. I am good at putting on a show of bravado, but I am nowhere near as confident as I seem. Having a backup, no matter how odd, feels good.
After lunch today, I was told to gather my things and meet with the Guild Mistress in the Journey Hall. Stepping into the Hall I was met by a wonderful sight – the floor was covered in the most fabulous cloth, onto which had been laid spun silk thread in a circle. I was told to stand outside of the circle to the South, “the red” , someone whispered. As I took my place I could hear singing. The Guild Mistress entered followed by some other travellers, those that had returned for a rest and those that had not yet set out. It was they who were singing the Mistress’s entrance. She stopped at the Eastern side of the circle. One of the other travellers lit a candle and handed it to her. She walked sunwise right around the circle, raising the candle at each of the cardinal points and muttering … I couldn’t hear what she was saying but assume it was some kind of blessing. Arriving at my side she took my hand and led me to the centre. I always find these things highly embarrassing, I know, I know! I shouldn’t feel silly but I do, I squirm inside, can’t help it. She then handed me a small pouch within which were a stone, a feather, a candle and a shell. I thanked her and she hugged me so tightly I could barely breathe. I was to stay in the centre whilst she walked the circle again, this time anti-clockwise … I was supposed to concentrate and ‘feel’ in which direction I was to set out. As the beginning of each new day is heralded by the sun rising in the East – East it is.
The ceremony ended with much singing and feasting. I am sitting outside the walls of the Guild about to embark feeling sad at leaving friends old and new behind yet looking forward to the encounters ahead. Time to put my journal way and get moving.