I felt the exact moment when Alyssa had impulsively decided she would see me and ask me for our souls to unite. There was nothing in the world I would rather do than grant her her wish. I loved her. Oh, I loved her.
But I couldn't think of that now, because she had been detracted from her Path.
Alyssa was in trouble!
I knew before I heard her silent prayer, before she had been ungracefully and so wrongly man-handled - and I felt vicious hatred towards the man who had harmed her in shoving her into that slave cart.
I had known when her sisters had told her of the smoke.
That pain in my gut - an indicator of when Alyssa was in trouble - seared as I left my house, slamming the door behind me.
I teleported to a part of the road where horses pulling a wooden cart full of sobbing people was coming towards me. I hid in the bushes to the side and prepared my Spirit energy.
Using my mind, I made the horses slow to a halt and fall asleep, turning off that which caused them to feel pain so that the whips of the soldiers didn't affect them.
The soldiers jumped off, bemused.
Now, this was going to be trickier.
There was lots of dry grass around them - that was useful. Carefully, I set a ring of the plant alight, ensuring that the circle in which the soldiers were trapped had a great enough area to prevent any harm from coming to them. A Guardian Spirit was not permitted to take a life.
I also moistened the grass within that circle, despite trusting my powers to obey me. One could never be too careful.
As the soldiers yelled, I again used my mind, this time to open the door to the wooden cart. The villagers ran out, bewildered but joyous. They thanked the Lord and I thanked him too, because when most had gone, out stepped Alyssa, frail and beautiful and mercifully safe.
I ran to her, dousing the fire around the soldiers but knocking them out with a couple of well-aimed Thoughts of a Stunning Nature.
I pulled her into my arms and kissed her. But then I felt a great lurch as adrenaline and spirit left me, and I collapsed, unconscious.
I awoke in a copse. It was night time. Above me I could see the stars and the moon.
I eased myself into a sitting position and saw Alyssa looking concerend.
"Are you okay?" she asked.
"Yes. But my actions tonight will render me powerless for the next seven days. You must try to keep yourself out of danger."
"Danger is unexpected," she murmured. Her voice was so beautiful, even when she was serious...
"I have a plan," I informed her. I had been developing this idea ever since I had an inkling that Alyssa's life might be threatened.
Using the last dregs of my strength, I teleported her, myself and her sisters (finding their locations on a large map of the area within my mind) to my house, where I knew they would be safe.
It was a risky thing to do when I was fatigued, and I wasn't able to inform Alyssa that I would be out for quite some time when my body threw me into a deep blackness.