It was around the twelfth sun, and the streets were teeming with people and older students on their lunch breaks. I quickly browsed a few shops before making my way back to the ship. As I was boarding the ship, I looked to my right and noticed Tarquin, who was reading a book on his boat. I whistled to him and then waved to catch his attention. He immediately noticed me and put a plank up so that I could cross over to his ship.
For an hour or so, we sat together basking in the warm sun and enjoying the cool sea breeze. Tarquin and I talked about our lives and our plans for the future. He told me how he wanted to become a scientist and teach science to children. I then shared with him that I wanted to go to schola grandis and become a cartographer. His ears perked up at this.
“Siram, why don’t you just to schola grandis here? We have a great cartography program!” Tarquin chimed, his blue eyes gleaming like the sea at high noon. I sighed.
“I would love to,” I started, webbing my fingers together, “but I have to a quest to finish.” I really didn’t know what to say to him, but I hope that answer was good enough.
“Well when you are ready you should apply! It would surely be a greatly missed opportunity if you chose not to” he replied. “You’re a very intelligent young woman, Siram. You need to go and accomplish your dreams.” Tarquin looked me deep in the eyes. His gaze was filled with passion. I looked at him and frowned.
“I must leave today, Tarquin. We’re setting sail by the fourth sun.” I replied. His eyes widened with a bit of sadness.
“Oh Siram, must you leave so soon?” I sighed again.
“Yes, Tarquin. I have to finish this quest.” He looked down and then stood to his feet, extending his hand out to mine. I looked at him in a confused manner. He stared deep into my eyes, and suddenly I was pulled into his warm embrace. My eyes widened with surprise. There we were, heart to heart and staring eye to eye. We were frozen in time and space, neither of us attempting to step out of that boundary. He cupped my face in his palms, and my heart raced like Calpergan racehorse just two feet away from the finish line.
“Siram, I know this may be the last time we ever see each other again, but I just wanted you to know how beautiful you are. From the moment I met you, I knew that I fell instantaneously in love.” Tarquin said, his face moved closer to mine, and then our lips were just mere millimeters apart. In that fleeting moment he softly and passionately captured my lips with his. My eyes shot open in shock as he pulled me closer to him. A few seconds later, my body got used to the foreign feeling of the kiss, and I involuntarily melted into it. This was it. This was the moment of my first kiss, and I’m still in complete shock. Suddenly, I heard footsteps and then a chuckle.
“Oi! Well, isn’t it the two lovebirds?” Andrias yelled as he walked onto our ship. Tarquin and I broke away immediately, my face turning a bright crimson from embarrassment and anger. Tarquin cleared his throat and directed his attention to Andrias.
“Well, Andrias is there anything you need help wi-”
“Oh come now, Tarquin! You don’t have to try to cover up what just happened. You’re a lucky guy!” Andrias said, cutting him off. He patted Tarquin on the shoulder and resumed moving the last bit of things onto the ship. He then returned to us and then sighed. “So, girlie, I guess it’s time to say your goodbyes.” Andrias said. Tarquin and I looked at each other again, his face full of sadness. We then embraced each other for about ten seconds and then we looked at each other again. He nodded and then cleared his throat once more.
“Siram, I wish you Godspeed and safety in travel, and I do hope that we can meet again someday.” I nodded with a small smile.
“Likewise. Thank you so much for your hospitality. I will be forever grateful of what you’ve done!” He smiled and then started to descend the ship. We waved farewell to each other, and then we both moved apart in opposite directions; he, returning to the castle and, and I, going into the hull of the ship. As I hit the bottom landing of the stairs, my thoughts began to sour. Somewhere, in the depths of my mind, I knew that I made a mistake.