It is Glenta who teaches them
how to get rid of things --
old doubts and worries,
shadows of the past.
These are things that can be
scoured out like dusty corners,
beaten like a rug caked with dried mud,
boiled clean like a cauldron after cooking.
Shaeth is shocked to discover
how much power the old woman
can pinch between her wrinkled fingertips
without so much as touching him for help.
Trobby is amazed to realize
how much better he feels
after wiping down the bits of broken glass
that pass for a window in their shack of a temple.
They're cantrips, only cleaning cantrips,
such as any peasant might know to cast;
but in her hands they're magic,
blessing and benison and forgiveness.
Twilight finds them both on the floor,
scrubbing with more will than they've had in ages,
when Glenta bends down to stop them
as gently and firmly as she started them.
Trobby's knuckles are raw from harsh soap.
Shaeth, somehow, has an actual backache.
"Enough," Glenta says, "enough for now.
You need to take this one day at a time."
Shaeth tells her to put that in the codex too.