Abbott and the Djinn Chptr. 3.3

“Here they are then,” said Gospels conversationally if a bit breathlessly, “I will introduce you.  Gospels brow furrowed, “Odd to say, I don’t know your name.”

Smoke coughed, “uh, well I may have neglected to mention my name.  Indeed my name is both of no importance to me anymore and of very central in importance to what I am doing here.  You see, I mean to escape what I was most recently called and it is also true that I never knew what my parents, if I had them, may have named me originally.

“This is a bit awkward,” said the monk, he looked hard into Smoke’s eyes appraising, “though it was not my parents that named me Gospels, but rather my vocation.”

“I’ve had many names like that, from vocations.  Now I want to start new and I don’t want to trouble old associates with it resurfacing.”

“Was it murder? Are you sought for some crime?”

“No, unless it be that I killed the old me.  I had a successful life, but there are expectations that I can not meet.  Over and over my life progresses and folk expect a certain path that everyone else takes, but not me.”

There was a shout from seaward as someone in the skiff noticed them standing above the landing, Gospels turned and waved to the approaching boat and then turned catching Smoke’s eyes again and staring hard for a moment before speaking, “We must speak of this further, but for the time I must call you something.  Sailor?  Something that speaks to your vocation?”

Smoke frowned, concentrating.  “No, not that.  What was the dark hour that I first awoke and you gave me a sip of water in the night?”

“I believe after Iamerge.”

“Call me Iamerge, perhaps it will seem familiar to your friends and. . .”

Gospels smiled but not kindly, “An excellent deception, but should I really deceive my brethren, participate in that even as you deceive me?

Smoke blushed, “No, I don’t mean to deceive as much as to ease.  I have no ill intent and much interest in your abbey.  I mean only good.”

“I will hold you to that.  I think you are my purpose, but I’ve been wrong before.” Without a word more Gospels walked down to the boat landing.

Smoke followed a bit more circumspectly, allowing Gospels to lead and staying in his shadow.  The approach for the boat was somewhat precarious.  It was relatively calm, but the berth was all sharp rock and unforgiving and the sea, even when it was not in a rage, was still the sea.

Four of the monks climbed out of the boat and held it while three remained in the skiff, their faces all turned toward Gospels.  Smoke could not see Gospels face but there was a range of emotion on the men who had just come to the little island.

“Gospels! How can this be?” Dark eyes and a heavy brow gave the first monk to speak a brooding demeanor,  “We committed you to God and the sea half a year ago.  Are you flesh or spirit?”

“Ah, Exodus, good to see you.  I am still quite corporial, still some flesh on these old bones.”