Two hours later, the travelers came to her front yard. Teti went out to face them, and she caused them to stop and face her. Her hand was still up to shade her eyes, and with her other hand on her hip, she spoke sharply. “Who are you to tromp across my fields on great, unclean beasts.
“Simple travelers,” Mingus said. “Please forgive our ignorance.”
“And a fine looking young couple traveling with you. Are you married?”
“Not yet,” Boston lamented.
“Well, you should be,” Teti said with a grin against the sun. “Maybe we can work something out while you are here.” Before anyone could respond, the others caught up. “Great! How do you expect me to get any grain at all out of that field with you tromping all over it?”
“We are very sorry,” Alexis apologized as Decker came in from the wing to where everyone had stopped.
“We are looking for a woman named Teti,” Lincoln said, and added an aside for the others. “Teti is normally a man’s name. The woman should be Tetifer or something.”
“I know who you mean. The lion killer, or maybe the peacemaker if she is around to overhear.”
“Yes, that’s her,” Lincoln said, but he checked the database to be triple sure.
“Does your village have a name?” Katie asked to be polite when the woman blocking their way looked like she was not going to say where they could find Teti.
“Thinis,” Teti answered. “That ridge you came over is full of graves. The great god of war, Anhur is buried there. So is Narmer, the first ruler of the two lands, and many Pharaohs who came after. In the village you will find the temple of Anhur as well as the shrine of Sakhmet, the lion goddess we call Mehit. Perhaps you intend to go and pay your respects?”
“Thinis,” Katie breathed the name deeply. “A city lost in legend.”
“It would be good to see our Sakhmet again,” Lockhart was on a different track.
“Beauty. Love.” Anak came up from the river when he saw the travelers stop at the house. “Welcome friends,” he said as he went to Teti and slipped his arm protectively around her. Mother Nephthys chose that moment to stick her head out the door. little Mia holding her dress.
“Tell your friends there is room in the barn for their horses and plenty for supper. Come on in.”
“Anak, my husband,” Teti said. “Allow me to introduce my friends. The three elves in front are Mingus, Boston and Roland. The humans behind them are Major Decker, Captain Katie Harper, Lockhart, Alexis and Lincoln. The floating old one is Elder Stow. They are friends from the far future.”
“Forgive my wife,” Anak said. “She sometimes says things that make little sense.”
The travelers smiled and Lockhart spoke up. “But that is the charm,” he said.
“I knew it,” Boston shouted. She got down and ran up, but then paused before she gave Teti a gentle hug around the baby. Teti smiled for her.
“Let us get you married,” Teti said. “Then maybe you can get in this condition.”
Boston looked at Roland and disguised nothing in her look. “Oh, I hope so,” she said.
After a fine supper of beef, onion and local bread, Teti and Nephthys excused themselves to put the children to bed. Ankar wanted to stay up, but he was nine, and told their visitors would still be there in the morning. Lenanni wanted to stay up when Ankar protested, but she was glad enough to go to bed. Koteph was half-asleep during supper, and Mia was young enough to still be good. With that, it did not take long to tuck them all in and then Teti turned to her mother with a question.
“Do you think your sister might be wiling to marry young Boston and Roland?”
“Elves have their own ways. It is not generally so formal,” Nephthys responded.
“I know, but Boston has not been an elf for very long. She was raised human and still has human memories and some human dreams.”
“Yes, I know. Roman Catholic. White dresses and flowers and rings.”
Teti paused and tapped her cheek. “I suppose we should have a bridal shower first. Maybe tomorrow, or the day after to have a day to prepare. Then the wedding the next day, unless the men throw Roland a bachelor party. They may need a day to recover.”
“There is a lot to be said for eloping, the way elves usually do it.” Mother Nephthys said, but she smiled. “In the future, people make everything so complicated, but I am looking forward to it.”
“Good. But what can I possibly give her for her shower?”
Teti nodded, but still she tried to think of something as they rejoined the others. There was a knock on the door.
“I’ll get it,” Anak stood, and as a kindness to him, it never occurred to him how his small house became big enough for all of those people to be there, comfortably. “Can I help you?” He asked.
“I came to see my mom and dad,” the woman at the door said. Anak stepped aside and the woman came in and immediately squeezed herself between Lockhart and Katie. “So when are you two going to finally get married?” the woman asked. Katie and Lockhart passed a glance over the woman’s head and then gave her a loving hug and squeeze. Sakhmet found some tears.