A Dream Shared

A Dream Shared

A Chapter by Eddie Davis
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While Aurei and Eleazar share a dream together, others search for them.

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48.

A Dream shared

 

 

He was in a forest - not a huge, terrifyingly dark forest, but one that seemed peaceful and lovely.   Glancing around, he of course saw her there, but it didn’t surprise him, for he knew she would be there and he was thrilled to find her.   It was definitely her, though, and like him, she wasn’t the same.   They were children, both wearing the dark green and browns of the wood elves.   She waited for him on a fallen log and grinned happily when he ran to her.   They didn’t have to speak, for their thoughts were joined.  

She grabbed his hand and they ran up the green path as the birds sang.

 

They explored for hours, perhaps for days, and saw wondrous and beautiful things.   A mother bear and her cubs lazily prowling along a fish laden stream.   A group of deer grazing in a flower covered meadow.    A lone unicorn drinking from a forest pool.   All these things they shared, hand in hand, as they crept through the wonderful forest.  

For a long time they laid on a bald hilltop in the very middle of the forest, staring up at the puffy clouds and seeing shapes in their forms while huge bumblebees buzzed around the flowers collecting pollen.  

They found a crystal clear hidden lake and swam and played in the water, then climbed a sturdy tree and watched the sun set while a universe that was full of bright stars came to life.   All the while they shared the joys, the discoveries, and their emotions, without the need to utter a single word.

Through it all, he felt complete and utter joy for the first time in his long, troubled life.   He would have happily willed the wonderful dream to continue forever.

 

***

In the Ducal Keep, Matron Zeatt got up and excused herself from the conversation she was sharing with Sir Alvis, King Haroldris and Queen Eioldth.   They had talked for hours and it had been an awful, but fascinating tale that the knight told them about his experience within the clutches off the Necromancer’s Guild.  

But now as the night entered its deepest part, the Drow Priestess was feeling a renewed hunger for Dart’loxinchu.   She took a deep breath and debated opening one of the shuttered windows to get some air.

“Zeatt?   Are you alright?”  It was the Queen, whom she had grown extremely fond of in the short time she had got to know her.   She reminded her so much of her sister -Aurei’s mother- that she found herself thinking of her as she sat near the Elven queen.

“I’m having some difficulty.”

“Withdrawal?”

“I’m afraid so, Your Majesty.”

“Eioldth; we can dispense with titles in private.   Would you like to try that tea I told you about?   I have some Faesidhe Tree leaves here.”

“Oh, that would be too much trouble…”

“Not at all; we just need some hot water.  Surely the Muddy Boot would have some.   It is only an hour after midnight; I have noticed that they usually don’t leave for several more hours.   Aurei is usually there cleaning up in the dark.”

“I haven’t had a chance to tell her about the remedy; she’ll be thrilled.”

“There you go; we’ll get some air and share the news, as well as get you some relief so you can sleep soundly when we finally get to sleep.   We’ll go together, I doubt there will be any Vampires hanging around in the cold wind.”

“Well, okay, if you don’t mind.”

“What are friends for?   Come on!” 

Minutes later they had persuaded the ducal sentry at the front entrance to let them out, and were hurrying across the courtyard, their fur cloaks billowing behind them as they trudged through the deep snow in the strong wind.

 

“I don’t think a vampire bat could handle this wind!”  Zeatt joked as they knocked on the kitchen door to the Inn.

Brandi was very surprised to see the two regal ladies standing outside in the cold, but quickly ushered them inside.

“How is it going, tonight, Brandi?   Any trouble?”  The Queen asked.

“No, Your Majesty, it has been rowdy, but peaceful.   No signs of any Vampires either, thank Yesh.”

“We’re here for a kettle of hot water; we both crave tea.” Eioldth patted her slight bulge, hoping to imply that the request was to satisfy a crazy pregnant urge.

“That’s no problem at all, Your Majesty.   Hold on just a moment and I’ll get a kettle going.”

The pretty redheaded barmaid quickly started a pot at the stove.  

“So is Aurei still here?”  Zeatt asked, glancing around as Krys came into the kitchen with a tray filled with dirty flagons.

Krys shot her sister a mischievous grin and Rori, who was washing dishes at the wash basin, snickered.

“What?”   Zeatt asked the girls, wondering why her question was met with that sort of response.  

“She’s not working tonight, Matron Zeatt.”   Krys answered, still smiling.   

“Do you know where she’s at?   I haven’t seen her all evening.”

“I’m pretty sure she was on a date.”  Rori said and both Zeatt and Eioldth looked over at her, surprised.

“With Sir Eleazar?”   Zeatt queried.

The barmaids’ smiles confirmed that.

“Where were they going?”

Krys again shot her sister a look, and Brandi also paused, not wanting to embarrass their friend.    Rori, however, with her back turned, did not get the silent instructions.

“She said she was going to go take a bath with him.”

“Really?”  Zeatt’s tone made the young Sorceress turn around and realize she should not have told that.

“Well, I think she was just fooling around with us.   They were holding hands though and went down into the basement.”

“Where’d they go after that?”   Eioldth inquired.

“We didn’t see them leave; they could still be there.”   Brandi answered, “Oh course we’ve been busy and may have missed them coming up the stairs.”

 

“Maybe I should go check to see that they aren’t down there… it is dark down there, a great place for a Vampire.”

“Matron Zeatt, they may want… some privacy.”

Zeatt just frowned and headed to the stairs.  

 

The Queen glanced at Brandi, “Just keep the water warm, we’ll be back in just a minute.”  With that said she joined the Drow lady.

“Isn’t this just a basement?”   Eioldth asked as they descended.

“There is a bathing facility that the family uses concealed behind a hidden door.   It is actually quite nice, but there is only one way in and out of the room and it would make a great place for an ambush.”

“Are you more worried about that, or finding them there… engaged?”

Zeatt looked at her friend, finding that the question surprised her, “I hadn’t really thought about that possibility.”

“It would be very embarrassing for them if that is the case, and we stumble upon them.”

 

Zeatt stopped right in front of the secret door, “Eioldth, I’m not sure I would know what to say or how to act.  She’s very young by Drow reckoning, but she’s a complicated mixture of maturity and innocence due to her human upbringing.   Even Eleazar is a complex young man who mixes experience and youthfulness.   I’ve not had much luck guiding my own daughter, Sophia, into correct choices, so who am I to say anything to them?”

“I’m not sure we have the right to say anything about their actions, though I imagine that could impact their status as Paladins.”

“And I’m an Archbishop in the Church of Yesh, so in that capacity I may have to address anything they have done.   I certainly hope that is not the case.”

Zeatt opened the secret door, which Aurei had only shown to her recently, and they went down the hallway.   “They’ve been here.”  Zeatt whispered to the Queen, “I can see their wet footprints on the floor.”

 

A moment later they rounded the corner and stepped into the open bathing area.   No-one was there, but Zeatt noticed a sort-of mist hovering over a small stone bench on the other side of the room.    Eioldth saw it too, and when the mist began moving toward them, both women looked at each other in alarm.  

Zeatt glanced down at the pool of water and quickly formulated an idea.   She began quickly chanting a spell.   As soon as her voice filled the air, the mist accelerated, taking human form as the vampire rematerialized quickly to try to stop her.   Eioldth seemed paralyzed with fear.  

 

The Vampire reached for Zeatt, who was still finishing her spell.   Suddenly, the Queen raised her hand straight out and made a clutching gesture.   An invisible hand pinned the surprised vampire at once.   He hissed and struggled.

Zeatt’s spell ended and the Vampire began turning to mist again.

“Quick, throw him into the pool!” Zeatt ordered, and the Queen turned her hand and made a dunking motion.   The hand immediately mimicked the move and before the vampire could become incorporeal, he was dunked into the pool.

He let out an ear piercing scream as soon as his flesh hit the water and was covered in horrible burns.   At once his form dissolved and drifted up out of the cavern, to return to his coffin.

Eioldth looked at Zeatt, puzzled, “What did you cast on the pool to make that happen?”

“It was a crazy idea, actually.   I just cast the blessing spell on the pool to sanctify it.”

“Holy water!”   Eioldth laughed, “Brilliant!  Will he return?”

“Oh, he’s not destroyed, but he won’t be active at all for tonight and probably several nights afterwards until he heals up.”

“I wonder if there are others?”

“He didn’t seem to be the master, from his lack of experience to attack alone a priestess and a magic-user.  He’s just an underling, I’d say, and now we know for sure that they are here in town.”

“He was looking at something over by that bench.”

The two Elven women went over to the bench to investigate.   Crumpled on the floor as if someone had dropped it, was a pair of linen shorts that Zeatt suspected belonged to her niece.  

“This was Aurei’s; they were here.”

“Surely the Vampire didn’t get them or he wouldn’t have been hanging around.”

“I think you’re right.   We know they didn’t come back to the Ducal Keep or the guard would have told me he’d seen them.   The Knight’s Keep, perhaps?”

“I didn’t see any tracks in the snow when we crossed over and surely they would have gone through the kitchen and out that door as it would be much closer than going all the way around the Inn and the stable.”

Zeatt nodded, “Well, that would mean that they would still be here in the Inn.   I could see Aurei’s old room down here; the door was open and it was empty.”

“Could they be upstairs in one of the rooms?”

“Aurei told me that she sometimes uses the Master Bedroom that had been her parent’s room; perhaps we should check up there.   They could have been bitten, though I imagine they wouldn’t have simply gone up there afterwards.”

“If they are still together.”  The Queen added.

“I have a strong suspicion that they are.   I don’t know why I feel it, but I do.  But with that vampire about, I’m going to have to check.”

“I understand, let’s go.”

Quickly they hurried out of the underground chamber, watching every shadow for any suspicious movement.  

“Did you find them?”  Brandi called as they exited the basement.

“No, but we’re going to check upstairs.”

“Is everything okay?”  The girl asked, probably detecting the Drow lady’s concern.

“Yes, it’s fine, don’t worry.”  Zeatt tried to reassure, theorizing that there was no need to scare the poor girl by telling her about the vampire when they had neutralized the threat.   She paused though and thought for a minute, “Brandi, do you have any sprigs of garlic in the Inn pantry?”

“Yes, we use it quite a bit as seasoning… why?”

“Vampires are repelled by it.   Just to be safe, why don’t you and the other girls take a sprig with you tonight before you leave?   Carry it in your hand and rub it against your neck.”

“Will it protect us from vampires?”

“Yes, it will offer some protection… if there are any about.”   Again she tried to smile to reassure the girl, who seemed a bit more apprehensive now.

“Okay, ma’am, thanks for telling me that.   We’ll be here for a while still, so we’ll keep that hot water over the fire.”

“Thanks, Brandi.   We’ll be right back.”

Again the two Elven ladies crossed the room, this time to the back stairs in the tavern area (which had closed, thankfully) that led to the upper floor.

 

The stairwell was better lit and they could hear snoring as they passed several rooms, which relieved the tension some.   A moment later they stood in front of the master bedroom door.   Zeatt pulled her prayer beads, which were connected to a large blood cross holy symbol from a pocket in her robes.   Eioldth also produced a holy symbol, a smaller sized blood cross on an ornate chain.  

“Ready?”   Zeatt whispered, and the Queen nodded.   The Drow matron prayed that the door wasn’t locked, and she was relieved to find the door opened easily and quietly.

 

The room was dark, but the only heat reading she could sense came from the bed.   On a chair lay a jumbled mess of armor pieces and clothing.   For a moment she considered just leaving the room, but she had to make sure they were alright.   As quiet as a shadow, she crossed the room, as Eioldth waited respectfully at the door.  

 

To her dismay, she found both of them in bed together.   They were clothed in guard’s tunics and both fast asleep, Aurei lying snuggly in Eleazar’s arms.   They both seemed to be smiling in their sleep.   In spite of the implications of what she was seeing, they both seemed so peaceful and content; she decided this was no time to confront them; if there ever was an appropriate time.   Quietly she crossed the room and nodded grimly to the Queen’s quizzing look.   With a sigh, they both silently left the room and closed the door.  

 

A minute later they had returned downstairs and Zeatt knew there was no way she would be able to hide the truth to the barmaids who already suspected it anyway.

“Did you find them?”   Brandi asked, and Zeatt nodded.

“Oh. Okay.”  Brandi looked over at Krys and then to Rori.   All three girls suddenly felt very awkward.

“I think we’ll take that hot water now.”   Eioldth said as she sat down next to Zeatt at the kitchen preparation table.  It was going to be a sleepless night, she thought, pulling the Faesidhe tree leaf from her pouch.

 




© 2014 Eddie Davis


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Added on December 14, 2013
Last Updated on May 20, 2014
Tags: Drow, Elves, Undead, Vampires, Fantasy, Adventure, Swords and Sorcery, Magic, Wizards, Romance

The Chronicles of Aurei Book 2: The Knights of Northmarch


Author

Eddie Davis
Eddie Davis

Springfield, MO



About
I'm a fantasy and science-fiction writer that enjoys sharing my tales with everyone. Three trilogies are offered here, all taking place in the same fantasy world of Synomenia. Other books and stor.. more..

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A Chapter by Eddie Davis


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A Chapter by Eddie Davis