“What happened, then?” Nashtra asked, looking back towards the road as it began to curve away from a river that was flowing nearby.
“James essentially kidnapped us,” Peter said before Himeko could speak.
Himeko turned around and gave him a frustrated look. Then she told Nashtra, “We had no way to tell our parents that we were going anywhere. We were…” she paused unsure how much she should try to explain their Dungeons and Dragons campaign. “We were playing a game, and there was a crystal in the room. Its magic transported us to an old-looking cottage south of the baron’s village in Carawick.”
“A big purple one!” Cerys told Nashtra. “Have you seen it?”
Nashtra shook his head. “I am afraid that I do not know all of the baron’s possessions, whether r not he is an ally of these woods. I have heard of magic crystals, though. In Summerlay, gems and precious stones can hold a lot of power.”
“Why is it always precious stones?” Peter grumbled. “Why not plain old granite?”
“Granite?” Nashtra asked incredulously. “I doubt that it contains any of the elements needed to resonate with magic. I suppose that a wizard could try, though.”
“That reminds me,” Cerys added. “If you think jewels are so precious, what about this silver?”
When Nashtra peered down at her, she held the clasp of her cloak towards him. “Wouldn’t this silver make this cloak really expensive?”
“Not at all,” Nashtra replied. “We have several silver mind beneath our forest, and it is common enough here that its value is only in the workmanship put into it. The outsiders seem to truly treasure it, though, so we trade it now and then for things that we actually need.”
“Like food?” Himeko asked.
“Sometimes, yes,” he said. “I should add, though, that the outsiders have no understanding of how vast our supply of silver really is.”
“So you’re restricting the supply on purpose?” Peter chimed in, as though calling him out for some sort of misdeed.
“I suppose you could word it that way,” the elf admitted, “though I believe the practice is quite common in many parts of the world. It allows us to have something of value with which to obtain enough food for our people. We do not use it to amass wealth for its own sake.”