“I don’t think he knew,” Peter said for him. “I think he just acted without thinking about his own safety.”
A slight smile crossed Cerys’s face. “Well, isn’t that sweet? He risked his own safety to save you.
Peter made a face at her. “You tease, but he could have been really badly her!” He looked at Bayani. “You can’t do things like that!”
The other boy looked back at him, unsure whether to be upset that Peter might be acting ungrateful, or if should just let the whole thing go. He didn’t think that Peter wasn’t thankful, because even he had to admit that he had been a bit of a fool running into the river.
“I really am fine,” he assured him.
“Are you sure?” Peter asked. “Maybe you should try it again and sure if you really can be in the river unharmed.”
That was the first time Cerys had ever seen Bayani glare at anyone. He look partly appalled that Peter would dare to say such a thing, and partly puzzled. Turning away, he shook his head.
“I am not even sure what to say about that,” he sighed.
“I trust that you are not actually going to try it,” Nashtra said, his tone edged with the slightest worry that he really might.
“No,” Bayani assured him. “Not at all. So tell me, why did you go off the path and come way down here?”
“He wanted to show us where the river goes underground,” Cerys answered for him.
“Is it really all that important?” Peter wanted to know. “I thought we had a certain item that need to get to the royal city right away.”
“It is along our way,” Nashtra said. “It will take no extra time.”
Peter shrugged, and got up from the rock. Together, they started to walk north along the shore, feeling their boots sink into the softened ground. Nashtra picked up some polished stones here and there, entering the river fearlessly whenever it pleased him. He even caught a few fish, their blue scales shimmering in the daylight, their fins and gills edged in luminous green. As they went on, the embankment changed, taking the party higher and the river lower.