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Amrita's Choice
By Colleen Messina
  

1     Young Amrita sat on the bluffs above the ocean, twisting her hair into a shining braid. Her white-blond hair and her white robe made her look like a marble statue resting on the heather except for the nervous motion of her hands. Over and under went the strands of hair. Round and round went her thoughts.
 
2     Amrita thought about the past six months as she watched the aquamarine waves crashing on the jagged rocks below. A fine spray of salt water hit Amrita's face, but she didn't care. Poseid was returning today! Sometime today, his black schooner would slice right through those pounding waves and land on the sandy beach a short distance away. He had taken a circuitous route home, which gave her more time to figure out what she would do.
 
3     Amrita was sixteen, and she was ready to take her final vows to be an Atlantean priestess. Amrita's mother had sobbed when she left Amrita at the temple at age seven. The temple became Amrita's home, and she never saw her mother again. Amrita tended the incense day and night to please Ra, the Atlantean god of the sun, agriculture, and prosperity. Amrita also cleaned the temple and said prayers to Ra for a bountiful harvest. The high priestesses didn't coddle the neophytes, and Amrita didn't seem to need personal love. Then she met Poseid.
 
4     Poseid's father was an illiterate merchant, but he conducted his business with the keenness of an educated man. However, he made sure that Poseid went to school because he wanted his son to have the high esteem that came with having an education. Poseid often sailed to far away lands to bring home incense, silk, tea, and spices. Most Atlanteans were expert seamen since their country was an island.

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