I had ridden with Jadir for quite a few hours, my pale grey horse's swingy gate loping across the trails beneath me. The elf kept a cold silence between us, which I was perfectly fine with. He seemed still infuriated that Althen, the great warrior, had told everyone he had gotten beaten by a human woman and that he did not think. Jadir appeared all the more angered I was the human woman, and now I was riding with him to fetch Princess Naria. He was in a terrible mood, obviously, combining earlier statements with the fact that his lover had gone chasing after a human man. The few days prior, everyone had seen the warm, curious looks the peculiar hunter was giving the princess, and I assumed Jadir had not missed it either.
It was almost dark when we reached the small group of travellers which had amassed around the human man, Ramin. They were easy to follow, as they left many fresh hoof prints and beat down the paths quite well, and when we entering the little clearing where they stood, it seemed they were bickering intensly.
"We are here for the princess." boomed Jadir, his rich, deep voice catching everyone's attention as he swung off his horse with elven grace.
"Good, take her." Ramin snapped, setting up a fire. I had not seen him so close up, as I had hid behind the crowds as I watched him earlier. He was extraordinarily wild and rugged in appearance, nothing like the elves I was so use to now. "I don't need company here."
"Naria," Jadir approached her, speaking ever so sweetly and gently. "Your father insists that you must return-,"
"It was the princess' choice to be here, whether the king wants her back or not, she still has the choice," the human interrupted, a change in his voice. Everyone looked at him suprised. "There is a place here for such a skilled hand in combat as you, Naria." With that he glanced up, noticing me standing there, as I had faded to the backround, unnoticed until that moment. I lowered my eyes, embarrassed, as I had been studying him thoroughly. He continued to Naria, "The offer is there, but the affairs of the elves are not mine. I am sorry for being rude, Naria, forgive me."
Naria opened her mouth, her eyes softening, but Jadir declared, "You have no right to offer her such things! Naria, come. Your father is waiting"
She was infuriated with him, appearing as if she was to slap him across the face. Instead, Naira said strongly, "No. I am staying."
Jadir furrowed his brow, his eyes flaming. Suddenly, the tension was wiped clean off of his face, and he said smoothly, "Well, than I shall stay too. My duty was to fetch you, and until it is complete, I will stay."