Sage and Song, Chapter 5: The Side Entrance

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Chapter 5: The Side Entrance

“The king’s favor is toward a wise servant.”

Lowered eyes and lofty thoughts. Hand safe in the captain’s keeping, Kester stayed at his side, and while they walked, the boy framed his current gratitude into a song. Composition calmed his frenzied heart. Melodies soothed away troubled thoughts. And without really meaning to, he worked in an accompaniment for harp. I will share it with Asaph at evensong.

The captain’s ambling pace slowed to a standstill. “This is the place.”

Kester blinked several times and returned his attention to their surroundings. They’d reached a wide open room with vaulted ceilings supported by golden columns. The walls had been carved with the figures of lions and angels. Inlaid floors gleamed softly in the light of many lampstands. Four guardsmen stood before double doors that were surely tall enough to accommodate a giant. This must be the entrance to King Solomon’s throne room.

“Did you pay any attention to the turnings?” asked the captain.


“Stop tuning out. This is important.” Taking Kester by the shoulders, he steered him to the right, saying, “The front door is mostly for dignitaries and generals. Which means not you. If the king calls, there’s a less conspicuous way in.”

Through an archway. Into a courtyard. Around a corner. Under an arbor thickly hung with ripening grapes. Kester cast a worried look at the sky, which was the milky blue of morning. “I am late.”

“Excuses fly as far as ostriches with the king. Own up and apologize.”

“I will,” Kester promised.

A narrow path half-hidden by lush greenery led to a side entrance, which was under guard. At least, that’s the impression Kester received. The man sitting before its ornate metal gate wasn’t wearing the colors or armor of the king’s soldiers, so maybe he was only a servant.

Kester had difficulty taking the man’s measure. His hair was pure white, but the planes of his face were unlined. Old, yet ageless. Somber, yet serene. Kester wondered where he was from, for the guard wasn’t any more Hebrew than the captain who pushed him forward.

“Solomon’s expecting him.”

The black-clad man’s eyebrows arched.

“Look close,” ordered the captain. “He’s called Kester, and he’s caught the king’s interest. You know what that means.”

With a careless agility that belied his age, the man sprang to his feet and unbarred the door. An inscrutable gaze. A stiff half-bow. A remark in a foreign language.

Kester stepped closer. “Say it again? I did not understand.”

Inclining his head, the man repeated himself, this time in heavily-accented Hebrew. “The meaning of my captain is clear. Our king has a new pet.”

♦ Do you have any little habits or routines that help you calm down?

♦ How many doors to the outdoors are in your home?

♦ Can you read or speak in more than one language?



Author’s Note: This story is a prequel to Christa Kinde’s Threshold Series [Zonderkidz] and updates twice a week (Wednesdays and Saturdays). More information can be found on the Sage and Song index page.

Sage and Song, © Copyright 2015 Christa Kinde, all rights reserved. If you want to receive an email whenever my stories update, subscribe to this blog. You can also watch for notifications on Twitter.

18 thoughts on “Sage and Song, Chapter 5: The Side Entrance

  1. When I’m nervous and need to calm down, I write.
    I have three one door through the garage that leads into the back yard.
    Foreign languages fascinate me. I can speak a little Spanish, thanks to my mom and my excellent Spanish teacher. I’ve always found Latin, Italian, and French to be interesting, and just recently I’ve been looking into Hebrew. I’m hoping that by time I’m thirty I will be fluent in two or more languages.
    My interest in foreign language has actually spilled over into my stories.


  2. When i need to calm down i have a habit of moving my hands often and running them through my hair
    I have 5 doors leading outside two of which we dont use
    I can read/understand simple/ sort of long phrases in spanish, french, japanese, and tagalog


  3. Beautiful says:

    First of all I just want to say I absolutely love your books!!! They are so much fun and encouraging. To answer your questions:
    I usually sing when I’m nervous ( but not when I have stage fright) I have two doors to the outside. And I can speak some Spanish and I’m learning German.
    Also I have a few questions as well, are you going to have a sequel book to Tried and True? I know you have Angels on Guard. (Which I love) but something like Rough and Trumble. Where Tamaes (not sure I spelt that right) is learning on how to be a guardian. Also is the Threshold series officially finished or will you have anymore? Thanks!


    • Oh, I’m so glad you’ve enjoyed my books! ♥

      By the time I publish Tried and True as an e-book, there will be an epilogue that may satisfy your curiosity about Tamaes’s early days “on the job.”

      I’m currently wrapping up a Threshold Series sequel that happens ten years later. Lord willing (D.V.), Pursuing Prissie, the first book in the Pomeroy Family Legacy series, will release this spring!


  4. Arian says:

    To calm down, I usually take slow deep breaths and repeat to myself, “It’s all right. You’re okay. You can do it,” and things like that. If my neck and arm muscles are twitching (which they do quite often; I have an anxiety disorder), I shake my head or arms to get the tension out.

    In my house, there’s a front door and a side door.

    At school and uni, I learnt to read Latin and Classical Greek, and to speak Italian. These days, my memory of Latin is the best. Greek is the worst, and Italian is dormant, although when I was 18 it was quite good. It rather annoys me that with a reading knowledge of four languages I’m still functionally monolingual. But they don’t teach you to *speak* Latin and Greek, and Italian is packed up in a suitcase at the back of my mind…


    • Arian says:

      It’s the best word for it. :) I was never able to discuss philosophy in Italian, but if you asked me simple questions, I could answer fluently and without consciously translating from English. And now I can’t.

      I’d expect it to emerge and be useful again if I ever went to Italy, but in the current state of my health and finances, that ain’t happening. So it’s sitting there in storage.


  5. Emma says:

    When I’m nervous, I often try to write about it. Getting it into words helps to calm me down. Sometimes I even give whatever problem is bugging me to a character, just to see how they deal with it.
    There are four doors to the outdoors in my house.
    I’ve taken a year and a half of Spanish, but it still has yet to begin to make sense to me, so I’m still just a plain old English speaker. : )


    • Journaling/writing is an excellent way to face tumultuous emotions. I love your idea of giving a problem over to a character. Might have to try that sometime … because I suspect the results would be amusing! : )


  6. When I’m nervous I usually try praying. Sometimes I’m too nervous to actually get the words out, but that’s what I do.:)
    Not including the garage I have two doors that lead outside.
    I am halfway through my first year of Italian, so I can speak and read a bit.:). But otherwise English, just English.:)


  7. Hello Christa,
    Thank you for sharing your story. I like your use of painting the scene before us and mixing in historical personages. I like how you are fleshing out verses in many ways.
    Thank you,
    Gary Avants


  8. Jesslyn says:

    I pray in tongues, read my Bible/declare verses (such as “I have the peace of God that passes understanding.”), sing worship music, and/ or take a hot shower or bath. : ) Depends on how nervous I am, but just one of these things works well, but I usually do more than one because I enjoy these things.

    I have a front door, a back door, and a garage.

    I started learning a new language more than once but I haven’t stuck with it long enough to know more than the random phrase. But I’ve ALWAYS wanted to be bilingual so I might take up a language’d be much better if I had a partner to learn it with though. That would make it much easier and way more fun.


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