Chapter 25

Chapter 25

A Chapter by Isemay

“What are you looking for Ani?” Vezar had been having a great deal of fun imagining turning Syr over his knee and the way her face colored and she seemed to try to provoke him, he thought she was enjoying it as well. Her departure from the seat next to him made his heart sink.

“My knife. The one Kaduil made for me, I can’t find it.” She sounded anguished.

“I was not looking for a knife when I took you from the ground and began to pour life into you.” He reminded her gently.

“I’m not-I’m not accusing you. I just.” Touching the threads he could feel that she was hurting as if she had a knife in her heart.

“Come to me. Come here.” He bowed his head as he heard her trying to muffle a sob. “I am sorry I did not-” She wrapped her arms around him from behind. Vezar pressed her hands. The bonds between them were still strong, but the bonds between his Syreilla and Kaduil were stronger. “The knife means a great deal to you.”

She murmured into his back, “He made it for me. It,” her ragged breath was genuine, “it’s beautiful. To lose it. It hurts me.”

“I feel that, my sweet Syreilla.” Rubbing her hands he tried to make her feel his regret and affection through the bonds. “What hurts you hurts me.” The response through the bond was heady. A wave of loving affection.

Snapping the reins he brought the horse to trot. He would go faster but he knew these wagons were not made for it. Wreton would allow him to be free of the body and wagon, it was at least the right direction to take her to the shrine. If it still stood it would be safe. The goddess granted him his heart’s desire before, she may do it again if she saw the love that he held.

“Where are we going, Vezar?” Syreilla sighed against his back.

“Come sit with me.” He pulled her into his lap as she joined him on the seat. The way she curled into him made him close his eyes and sigh in relief. “I am taking you to the place I was given the gift to change myself. It will be safe, if it still stands.”

“Olthon might still be trying to follow me. He said I was slippery but he was still able to follow me.” Vezar smiled feeling her concern as she spoke. “If he’s still following me you won’t have a safe place. Leave me somewhere. I want you to be safe.”

“My perfect Syreilla, I have been parted from you enough. I will take the risk.”

“Perfect?” She laughed softly. “You’ve been trying to change me since you met me.”

“Foolishly.” Vezar squeezed her. “I wanted you to be less sharp to me, more obedient, more affectionate. I,” he hesitated, “I readied the threads of your desire. They would stick like burrs to me if you cared for me.”

“And because I love Kaduil they stuck to him instead.”

“Yes. They can be detached.”

“I don’t want them to be detached.” He could feel her heart aching as badly as his own. “I love him and I want to go home to him, Vezar.”

“You feel for him what I feel for you. It is why I will settle for simply having you beside me, though I ache to have you completely.” Kissing her hair he hoped she didn’t hear the lie in his words. He would never settle. There was time, the dwarf could never hope to have the time with her that he would.

“I’m sorry.” Syr’s soft sigh made him smile, in this form she sounded almost childlike.

“Why are you sorry?”

“I don’t mean to play with your heart like a cat with a mouse.”

Vezar began to laugh and pulled her tightly against him. “Play with me. I enjoy it more than it hurts.” He felt her shake her head and relax. Sweet Syreilla was back where she belonged.

“It occurs to me to ask, how do you know where Wreton is? Was it there when you were King?” Her curious question made him smile.

“It was a patch of hovels barely worth mentioning, I recall the name only. There was a signpost outside of Brosa and I spoke with the farmer explaining I had not been this way. I have been given direction, sweet Syreilla.”

“Was Brosa there?”

“I do not recall that name. There was a city near that place called Habrosas. Perhaps the name was shortened over the years.”

“That’s fascinating to me. What else has changed?”

He began to laugh. “You are so inquisitive. I have not seen a map and I have seen very little of this country since I have awakened. What is it called now? It was once called Istira.”

“Istara. It never occurred to me that the names of places would change. It does make sense though, I guess. Everything is always changing.” Her words were perceptive for one so young, so much so that he thought she might be repeating something she’d heard.

“That is the purest truth, Syreilla. How did you come to it?” He stroked her no longer elvish ear.

“Master Odos. He trained me for years and sent me on the first job for Zylius. He could drink anyone under the table and he only drank mead. Even little hole in the wall taverns, out in the middle of nowhere with barely a drinkable beer, had a bottle of mead lying around for him.” She laughed and sighed as he realized who she was talking about. “‘Syreilla, everything changes, that’s the only thing that stays the same. You just have to decide what you want to hold onto for the time you’ve got it and know it’ll be gone one day well before you’re ready.’”

“Odos was the name of a god once. He was one of the trickster gods, a thief, and a poet.” He’d been certain she had the favor of a god, Odos wasn’t the worst she could have.

“He said he’d been named after him.” Syr nodded. “His mother had named his brother Imos like the god as well and they got along almost as well as the gods were reputed to. He’s the one who taught me how to get in and out of temples. I actually cried when he died. I made sure he got the very best funeral I could arrange, buried him with a big cask of his favorite mead…” Her sadness even after so long was palpable.

“You loved him.” Vezar kissed her hair.

“I did. He could be awful, especially when he was drunk, but he could also be as sweet as he was cunning. And as far as getting in and out of places goes, he’d probably still make me look like a rank amateur. He was the most brilliant, cunning man I ever met.” The awe and admiration in her voice gave him a twinge of jealousy. “And quick, we-” she started to laugh, “we once had a job that put us in the treasury of the King of Vreya and that man is so paranoid-” the sound of hoofbeats silenced her.

“I cannot get you to safety quickly enough like this Syreilla,”  Vezar whispered holding her tensely as the rider thundered past. “We need a faster way.”

“If we stumble across any bandits, that might work in our favor, but when you want them to pop up you can never find them. Are you really willing to leave your friend without getting him all the way home?” She sounded dubious.

“I am.” Robion hadn’t really been a friend. He’d kept to himself and been tolerable which had been appreciated, there was a difference.

“I’ll dig around in the back and see what I can find, I may come up with an idea. I think I’d still rather get him back to Wreton, even if we have to pay someone else to do it.” Syr shifted in his lap trying to disentangle herself from his embrace.

“You have such odd sensibilities, sweet sister.” The way she tried to look after the dead was somehow endearing.

“Maybe… we should go back to Ani and Adiel?” She sounded tentative and he pulled her back against him.

“My Ani, I can do that, but why do you sound so uncertain? Does it make you unhappy now to be called my sister?” If the bond was dissolving he needed to find a way to forge a new one.

“No,” she embraced him and sighed, “you’re my brother and I love you. I’m just… I’m feeling…”

Vezar ran his hand over her head and caressed her ears feeling the threads. “Olthon. Your threads are being pulled at, Syreilla. Your husband is being used to manipulate you, to make you uncomfortable with me.” Olthon had left his own threads exposed as he reached for Syreilla’s and Vezar thrummed across them angrily.

“That wretched elf.” Her mutter sounded tired and annoyed.

“I need to feed you again, sister. And I need you to stay touching me as much as you can bear to. I can keep us out of their sight, as long as you are close. It grows more tiring when you step away, or when we are not well fed.” To keep them concealed, she had to stay close.

Grumbling, she buried her face in his chest, “We need some bandits.”

“Mm. Yes.” The way she buried her face in his chest and curled against him, almost begging to be fed made him ache to find prey and feel the warmth of her gratitude. Visions of her pressing herself to him in the night, hungry and needful, were stirring in his mind. “Is there a way to attract them?”

“One cart alone, no guards, a father and child…” Syr sounded speculative, “We’re an easy target. If it were me I’d come in the back and rob you blind while you cuddled and chatted. Most bandits aren’t that patient, or quiet.”

He glanced to the back nonetheless. “What would you be looking for if you were robbing us?”

“The lockbox with Robion’s money and any goods that were valuable and light enough to make carrying them off of the cart worth my time.” She paused thoughtfully. “Speaking of thievery, I want to get some of my tools back in my pockets. I might be unarmed without my boot knife, but I hate to be unprepared.”

“The lockbox is under our seat. And you are never unarmed now, sweet sister. A single scratch and your opponent is at your mercy.” Vezar felt her shiver. “I can teach you how to make it free of pain for them. They feel as though they are simply drifting into sleep.”

“If I ever… If I ever have to use it. If you ever get tired of feeding me. I’d like you to teach me.” The sweet timid sound of her childlike voice made him want to crush her closer and promise to protect her from her own hungers.

The sound of hoofbeats again approached from behind. “Get into the back my Ani, gather your things. If this rider stops I would be ready to take his horse and flee.”

“Yes, papa.” Syr slipped from his lap as he released her, darting to the back. He heard her rummaging in the trunk again.

The hoofbeats neared, unslowed and for a moment Vezar thought this rider would also pass by, then the elf leapt from the horse’s back, lunging at him with a blade drawn. His face split into a grin and he didn’t bother to try to evade. Let this elf sink his blade, he would be devoured.

Syreilla was moving forward trying to intervene but without her half-elf blood, she wasn’t quick enough to put herself between them. She didn’t even have time to scream as the elf shifted his attack and pinned her to the wagon boards like a butterfly. The agonized roar that broke from Vezar shattered the air and made the elf shrink back in terror.

© 2017 Isemay

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Added on December 27, 2017
Last Updated on December 27, 2017
Tags: thief, dwarf, elf, dragon, gods




Bitten by a writing bug! Review my writing and I will gladly return the favor! I love reading other people's stories, and I try to review honestly and give constructive criticism. I love receivi.. more..

Chapter 1 Chapter 1

A Chapter by Isemay

Chapter 2 Chapter 2

A Chapter by Isemay

Chapter 3 Chapter 3

A Chapter by Isemay