Revelry Reveille

Revelry Reveille

A Chapter by Eddie Davis
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Aurei and Eleazar deal with misunderstandings about their relationship

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49.

Revelry Reveille

 




They were still together as the dream ended, sitting hand in hand watching the sun rise over the forest.   Then he was awake and as Eleazar opened his eyes, he was met with the sight of her also waking up.   They both smiled upon seeing each other and joined hands.   There was no need to say anything; for they had been together all night in the dream.   For a long moment they just stared happily into each other’s eyes.   Never in his long life had Eleazar felt so peaceful and happy.   He knew why immediately, for he understood with complete assurance that he would never be alone again.  

He had found her, though he’d never even known until recently that she was there to be found.   But she filled the heavy void in his soul unlike any friend he’d ever known before.   He wasn’t sure how, but it was different, completely different, and he was renewed and reborn.  

Aurei was experiencing the exact same emotions, the bliss of realizing that the one person in the world that could possibly make her feel complete was lying next to her, smiling happily upon her.  

The insane physical lust that she’d felt the night before lay dormant and suppressed, replaced by the completion that her soul felt.   It wasn’t like he was just her boyfriend; it was much deeper than that.   He was part of her and she was part of him.   She didn’t know how, and didn’t have to know how, all she knew was it was real and it overwhelmed her with peace, joy and love.

“We probably should be getting up; everyone will be stirring soon.”   He said after a long time.

“I don’t want this to end.   I’m scared it will all fade away.”

“No it won’t.   I won’t let it.   I’m not going anywhere far, sweetheart.   I’ll be right here close to the woman I love.”

She thrilled at his words and hugged him tightly, “I know; I’m so happy, Laz.  I just know something terrible is going to happen to ruin it all.”

He took her hand and twisted the Ring of Nitthum around on her finger, “No, not this time.   Neither one of us has been truly happy for a long time; this is our time and I feel Yesh is blessing it.”

“I hope so.   I’m just nervous, that’s all.   I’ve never felt like this before.”

“Wonderful, isn’t it?”

“Yes.  I can’t believe it, though, especially after how awful I acted last night.   You do realize I’ll probably try that again?”

“Oh, I’m certain of that.  The next time I’m going to pick you up, carry you outside and dump you in a big pile of snow to cool you off.”

She giggled at the image, “I’d probably melt all the snow.”

“I wouldn’t doubt it.”

“Laz, do you think there were any Vampire attacks last night?   I feel kind-of guilty being so happy this morning with vampires lurking around.”

“I don’t know, hon; you heard Sir Alvis, he seemed very confident no-one would get bitten.   I should go and see.”

“What about your armor " you haven’t cleaned it yet.   And my Drow chainmail tunic has a big hole in it.   Probably ruined, huh?”

“Yes, I’m afraid so.   But don’t worry about either thing, for I think I have a surprise for you.”

She rose up on her elbows, “Really?   What?”

“While you were sleeping off your injuries in the Autumn Maid, the crew and I salvaged what we could find of the treasures of the Emperor that spilled out with us when that deck gave way.   He had four shirts of Elven chainmail, all of them enchanted.”

“Wonderful… but will any of them fit me?   I’m rather big on my top half.  Elf maids aren’t usually as big as that.”  She frowned as she glanced at her bosom.

“I’m sure at least one will fit, besides, it won’t look bad at all if it is tight on you.”

“Laz!” She giggled at his flirt, amazed how different their relationship had grown.

“Well, come on, we’d better get moving.”   She reluctantly rolled off his chest and stood up stretching, “I hope Aeric and Alis made it back; she was supposed to do the baking this morning for the guards.”

“I doubt they did - they’d probably not want to travel at night.”

“Yeah, you’re right.   Oh dear, that means it’ll probably be noon before they ride back in; I’d better get down there and get the baking done!  How soon will Sir Alvis want to meet with all of us?”

“I don’t know; I’ll let you know as soon as I find out.   I want to check with the ducal guards to see if they have anything to report, then I’ll go see how things are going at the keep.”

“Will you come over to the Muddy Boot for breakfast?”  She gave him hopeful look.

“I’ll try to, sweetheart.”

“If you don’t, I’ll come looking for you.”  
“Okay; I’ll probably be talking to King Haroldris and Sir Alvis.”

“Why?”
“I’m going to resign as Knight Commander.”

“Laz!   No, not because of me!”

“Aurei, I can’t serve as an example for Paladin recruits while I am staying with you like we did last night.”

“But we didn’t do anything; we just slept… and dreamed.”

“I know that, but it is rather hard to explain to others.   I’m not sure if Yesh will take my Paladin status from me.  But even if he doesn’t, I don’t think it’s wise to try to live a double life.”

“Oh, but I hate for you to lose your title - you deserve it.”

“I think I’ll be alright… here with you.”

She went over to him and hugged him, “Please, just talk to them; explain everything.   We haven’t technically sinned… well, YOU haven’t sinned; I probably did last night after how I acted.   If you tell them what happened-“

“No.   I’m not going to expose your struggle to them.   They don’t need to know that.”

“But-“

“No ‘buts’, Aurei, I’ve got to do it.   You see, I enjoyed dreaming with you last night and I’d like to experience that again… if you agree.”

“Of course I agree!   I didn’t think it was even questionable.   But you know that people will start gossiping if you start staying here with me.”

“Oh I know that, but my whole life I’ve been a follower of rules.   Religious rules, order rules, rules of combat; countless rules.   Aurei, I don’t have a clue what to label our relationship - I think that if I tried, I’d be cheapening it in some way.   So rather than trying to follow rules of conduct and always worrying about what others might think, I’d like to just try to enjoy this new life with you.   Last night was so wonderful to me because it was like we were children, care-free and happy.   I never had a childhood.   I woke up more refreshed than I have ever been.   I don’t know if we’ll always share dreams like that, or if it was a limited or even unique occurrence. But that bond we developed last night is too precious to me to try to suppress it or even explain it.”

She nodded, “You’re right.  Wow, this is going to upset some people.”

“Well, let them be upset.   They’ll get over it, but I won’t get over losing a chance at happiness if I let it slip through my fingers.”

“Just be careful, okay?   Don’t give up so soon; feel them out and see what they say.   And remember that whatever happens, I will be here for you.”

He hugged her and kissed her forehead, then with a sigh, left to go face the new day that was dawning.

 

***

 

Eleazar hurried across the snow covered yard to the Ducal Keep, shivering against the cold of the pre-dawn air.   He spent several minutes speaking to the sentries on the roof of the Keep, who reported a cold, but quiet night had passed.   As he expected, Sir Aeric and Alis had not returned yet.   He excused himself and took the stairs down to the main banqueting chamber, where the Royal Couple, as well as Sir Alvis and perhaps Matron Zeatt, would be soon having breakfast.   He hoped to have a few moments to collect his thoughts before speaking to them.

 

But as he descended the stairs and opened the stairwell door into the hall, he was surprised to find Haroldris, Eioldth and Sir Alvis already seated at the dining table as if expecting him.

“Your Majesties, Sir Alvis; good morning to you.   I trust you all slept well last night?”

“It was a restless night, Earl Coldburn, though this morning it seems we all are whole.”   Queen Eioldth spoke, only a hint of a smile on her lovely lips.   The Half-Drow knew something was not right.

“Was there Vampire activity, last night?   The morning sentry said that all was quiet.”

“Matron Zeatt and I encountered a Vampire last night as we were looking for Aurei.”

“Good heavens!   Where?”

“In the place where the Bugley’s bathe.”

Immediately, Eleazar knew their stealth the night before had been compromised.

“Did it attack you, Your Highness?”  He asked, trying to ignore the less important issue.

“It tried, but together we turned it back to its coffin… wherever that may be.   We were not harmed, only rather shaken.”

“Aurei was with me, last night.” Eleazar decided to press straight through; get it all out on the table.

“We know.” Queen Eioldth replied, just a hint of ice in her tone.

Eleazar nodded, but looked King Haroldris straight in the eye, “Your Majesty, I’m very sorry to have to tell you this, but I’m afraid I’m going to-“

Haroldris held up his hand, “Before you continue, Earl, I would ask that you sit down and tell us what happened last night.”

Eleazar nodded and took a chair, “Sir, as much of what happened concerns Duchess Bugley, I’m not sure it would be proper to speak about her without her being present.”

The King leaned in, his blue eyes rather angry, though still under complete control, “Consider it an order, Earl Coldburn.”

Eleazar swallowed, “Very well, Your Majesty.   For some time I have felt strong affection for Duchess Bugley.   I’m not certain why, as most of my life I have had a great loathing for Drow, but since I met her last summer, my feelings for her have grown.   I did not share these feelings with her, because I knew they weren’t proper, but I was unable to shake them.”

“After I was able to rescue Matron Zeatt and her from the Emperor’s Airship, Aurei… I mean, Duchess Bugley, seemed to be growing somewhat… affectionate… to me as well.   I’m sure that only made my feelings for her stronger.    I began… obsessing with her safety.   Your Highness, I had a vision of my dead mother several days ago.   In that vision she told me of a pair of rings called The Rings of Nitthum which were enchanted and would regenerate someone injured.   The catch was that they had to be worn as a pair by a man and a woman and the healing enchantment would only work when the two were near each other.   Unknown to me, I had possession of one of the rings, which also had the enchantment of a Feather Fall spell upon it, that worked normally, without the other ring needing to be near.”

 

“My mother told me that both rings belonged to her parents, and that one of the two rings had been lost in battle with the Emperor of the Southern Empire many years ago, she suggested that I search the ruins of Fendoris’ Airship to see if he may have taken them with him, as he was known to covet great magic taken his ancestors over the years.”

“As I knew you desired the airship, I thought perhaps both purposes could be served by bringing the craft back to Westmark.   I had given the one ring to Aurei while rescuing the Emperor’s Airship to prevent her and Matron Zeatt from falling to their deaths, and she still had the ring.   The vision of my mother told me that for the enchantment to work, both rings had to be slipped on in the presence of the other wearer.   So I had to take Aurei… um, Duchess Bugley, with me.”

“I was surprised to know she had shared in parts of the same vision and she agreed to come with me.”

“Your Majesty, she had been seriously injured by Thantus, as I told you yesterday.   Sir Alvis can verify this.   She had a large hole in her belly and actually died while I was trying to save her.   I hadn’t found the ring yet, but I prayed to Yesh, and I saw something gleaming in the snow and I snatched at it, only to find it was the other Ring of Nitthum that had apparently fallen from the treasure room when the deck gave way.   I was distraught but I had enough sense to put the ring on.   Even with that and Sir Alvis laying hands upon her, she was not breathing, but thank Yesh she began again.”

“I’m telling all of this to you to make you understand what was going on that led to what happened last night.   I was so relieved to see her breathing again, and Sir Alvis and I did the best we could to keep warm that night until the Autumn Maid found us.   I’m certain it seemed improper to you, Sir Alvis, when I held the Duchess in my lap through the night to try to keep her warm as she regenerated.   I confess that when I put the other Ring of Nitthum on my finger, I felt as if all the feelings I had for… Duchess Bugley came to the surface.   It wasn’t as if I was feeling something I hadn’t felt before, but more as if the feelings overruled any reservations I had used to keep these feelings down.”

“Nonetheless, I didn’t try anything improper; I honestly just wanted her to stay warm.   When she awoke aboard the Autumn Maid, I noticed that she seemed somehow different.   More… mature… I guess you’d say.   But we reached Westmark at that moment and we had other things to concern ourselves with, so I didn’t think about it.”

Eleazar paused as he wanted to carefully craft his words for the next part.

“Your Majesty, after our meeting with Sir Alvis and the news of the Vampires, I commented to Duchess Bugley that I was tired and needing a bath after what we had been exposed to on that burning airship.   She graciously suggested that I use a private facility that her family used, and took me there.    While we were there, it became apparent that Duchess Bugley was… struggling with a… condition that seemed to compromise her moral judgment.”

“I admit that due to my… feelings for her, her struggle made it difficult for me to keep my own facilities about me.”

He cast his glance over all three of them as he went on.

“However, I assure you, nothing terribly grievous or shameful occurred and I was able with some effort to persuade her to return to her room to rest.   I’d hoped to take her to Matron Zeatt, but due to the late hour, that was impractical.   She wanted to stay in the Master Bedroom of the Muddy Boot and I escorted her there.   When we arrived, she began to feel deep remorse for her earlier lapse of sense and was scared.   She asked me to stay with her and to… to hold her.   I know that sounds bad, Your Majesty, but she said that she found comfort in my presence and I agreed to stay.”

“She fell asleep immediately as did I.   What happened next, I’m not completely sure about, but somehow the two of us shared a dream.   It was the same dream, and we both were in it.   The dream lasted all night and it was unlike anything I have ever experienced.   It… well, it… changed me.   I think it changed both of us.   I don’t know what happened, Your Majesty, but-“

Aleiryid!”  Queen Eioldth interrupted, and she was smiling excitedly, “It’s Aleiryid, Eleazar, are you familiar with it?”

“I know only what I’ve been told, Your Majesty.   Isn’t that the sharing of souls?”

“Yes!   It is very rare among the Faesidhe people, though I’ve never heard of the Drow experiencing it.   Your mother was Faesidhe, was she not?”

“My mother was Sialia Fannithal.”

The Queen’s mouth fell open, “YOUR mother was Sialia Fannithal?!  The Singer of the Legends?   The Great Bard?”

Eleazar nodded, “She was the daughter of Nitthum Fannithal and Baella the handmaiden.   She was captured by the Drow and spent years as a prostitute slave.  This was where I was born, Your Majesty.   I saw the mother of my Drow father slit her throat and die.   And I saw my mother in my vision; it was her that told me to find the other Ring of Nitthum.”

Eioldth sat back, amazed, “I did not know, Eleazar!   What you and Aurei experienced is called ‘Olore-yanwa’, the dreams of joining.  When Aleiryid begins, most times the two are only small children.   It begins with a girl and a boy being drawn to each other.   Not physically, but in their spirits.   But as they grow older, they begin to feel that they cannot be parted from each other.   The Faesidhe families of the two children usually join their households into one, as Aleiryid is considered by them to be such a holy event.   The two families will live under one roof, to allow their children to be closer to each other.   Their joining grows until Olore-yanwa, when the two began sharing their dreams.   At that point Aleiryid is complete and they are one.”

“One?”

“Joined.   United.   Married in the eyes of the Faesidhe.”

Eleazar sat speechless.

“Eleazar?”  The Queen asked, seeing his stunned look.

“I… I never had… union with her, Your Majesty.”

“Aleiryid is not that sort of joining, Eleazar.   It is the joining of spirit and soul.   Often it is many years before an Aleiryid couple consummates their union in that way.  But they never part.   Never has an Aleiryid couple ever divorced or separated from the other.   They stay together for all time, and usually die within days of their love’s death.”

“Do you think this is what has happened to Aurei and me, Your Majesty?”

“I am quite sure.   I could see it between the two of you when we were all on the road travelling to Westmark.”

Eleazar looked from Eioldth to Sir Alvis and King Haroldris, “Sirs, this is why I must resign as Commander of the Knights of Northmarch.   I know I have only held the post for a few days, but I don’t take the position lightly and there is certainly no way I can go through this, and help Aurei go through this while serving as the Order’s head.   Sir Alvis is back with us again and I am sure he would make a far better commander than I would.   As well as an Earl.   I would be glad to still train the recruits on combat techniques, or help in any way that I can, but as I probably will lose my Paladin status anyway, it would be most logical to save Your Majesty any embarrassment and simply resign.”

Haroldris looked over at Alvis, then back to the Half-Drow, “Eleazar, Sir Alvis cannot serve as the commander of this order.”

“Surely he could be transferred from the Blood Knights in the same manner that I and Sir Aeric were, could he not?”

“It isn’t that, Eleazar.”  Sir Alvis replied, “I will explain the reason during the meeting with everyone later when I tell about the Necromancer’s Guild and their plans.  Suffice for now to know that I cannot serve as the Commander of this new order.”

“Well, what about Sir Aeric?”

The King shook his head, “He does not have your experience, Eleazar.”

“But who then, Your Majesty?”

“You, Earl Coldburn.   You shall lead my order.”

“Your Majesty, I must tell you I won’t abandon my relationship… or whatever exactly it is… with Duchess Bugley.”

Haroldris smiled, “I don’t ask you to, Eleazar.”

“But if Yesh removes the blessings of a Paladin from me, how will I lead?”

The King sat back in his chair, “Eleazar, when I first met Queen Eioldth, she was simply the daughter of the King of the Losasidhe Elves who bordered my kingdom to the north.   I had just ascended to the throne and wanted to establish friendly relations with the Losasidhe.   So I visited them and was utterly overwhelmed by Eioldth when I first saw her.   We danced and spoke during my visit, but when I returned to King’s Reach, I found myself completely lost in thoughts of her.   I too was a young Paladin, Eleazar, and my desire to see her was so strong that I at last rode for three days to return to her father’s Kingdom to see her.   I had no idea what she would think of me upon my arrival.”

Eioldth took her husband’s hand, “He had nothing to fear, for I too felt drawn to him.   My father was heartbroken at my love for a human, but he knew better than to forbid it.”

King Haroldris laughed, “If he had, I probably would have went to war to win her; such was my passion for her.   When I arrived, Sir Eleazar, I was filled with such a hunger for her that we became lovers that night.   The next morning I faced not only the anger of the Losasidhe King, but the horror of finding that my sin had shed me of the blessings bestowed upon me as a Paladin.”

Eleazar sighed, his own fear expressed by the King in his own story.

“But”, the King continued, “Even in my shame and disgrace, I held firm.   Eioldth’s love for me and mine for her won the day and we were married with her father’s blessing.   The wondrous thing is, Eleazar, after seven months, Yesh again bestowed the mantle of a Paladin upon me.   Take heart, Earl Coldburn, for in the eyes of our God, love trumps everything.   Pure love overcomes our mistakes and misdeeds, and Yesh offers redemption to those who bear up under the consequences of their actions.”

The half-Drow smiled slightly, “Your Majesty, I love Aurei Bugley and I know she returns that love.   I’m unsure what I am expected to do, or what is considered the proper course to take, but I imagine it will result in marriage to her… if she desires it.”

Eioldth laughed, “Eleazar, you don’t understand, yet!   You ARE married to her now!   Your soul and mind has joined with her in a way that very few Elves ever experience.   A mere civil and religious ceremony will not enhance that.   Nor will physical consummation of your union.   The greatest bond between you has already been formed.   The King and I are not displeased.   I rejoice in the news for you and for Aurei; for I know that she has felt alienated from the humans around her that she so dearly loves, due to her race.    First she finds her mother’s sister, and now she finds her soul mate.   Yesh has shined upon her; and upon you.   Do not be ashamed of your love for her, for she is a gift to you from Yesh, to ease your loneliness and pain.”

Haroldris and even Sir Alvis smiled.  

“But will I lose my status in Yesh’s eyes as a Paladin?”  The Elf Knight asked.

The King shook his head, “Has it been taken from you this morning?”

“No… I don’t think so.”

“Then do not worry.   Aurei too is a Paladin, yet Yesh has ordained this.   Do not be afraid, Eleazar.   You stand pure in the sight of your God; I would advise you to proudly proclaim your love for Aurei to everyone.   I suspect the news will not surprise many.”

Eleazar nodded, “Thank you, Your Majesties, and Sir Alvis.   I am humbled by your wisdom, kindness and mercy to me.”

They smiled at him and Eleazar relaxed, hoping that Aurei would experience the same sense of relief.

 



© 2014 Eddie Davis


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Added on December 14, 2013
Last Updated on May 20, 2014
Tags: Drow, Elf, fantasy, adventure, romance, swords and Sorcery, undead, vampire

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