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“Ulrich, why do you think my mother…” Eirwyn turned. Her expression changed from innocent curiosity to horror as she beheld Ulrich’s raised knife. She screamed and backed away. Ulrich reached for her, covering her mouth with one large, calloused hand and holding the knife to her throat with the other. 

With a final quick stroke, Moira collapsed the spell, releasing Ulrich from the terrible bond. Ulrich’s hard eyes widened in horror as he realized the terrible deed he had very nearly committed. He threw his blade to the ground and pulled the frightened girl into his arms.

“Forgive me,” he sobbed into her ebony hair as she stood trembling in his embrace. Moira sat with her back against the tree. She closed her eyes and breathed deeply, attempting to calm her heart. As her pulse slowed and her breath evened, Moira realized that, in her arrogance, Millicent had failed to appreciate the power of the old magic within the mirror. Moira also thought of Ulrich’s bond. Without the black spell around his wrist, Ulrich could not return to the castle. She stood and placed her hand against the glass of the mirror, calling out to the Goblin in the hovel. 

The room was empty. Moira stood for hours, loitering by the tree, checking every few moments for any sign of the goblin or Eirwyn. As night fell in the old forest, Moira finally met with relief. The hovel was cramped, as 7 goblins, Eirwyn, and Ulrich crowded around the small hearth. 

“Ulrich,” Moira called.

Ulrich, shocked, looked around the tiny place for the source of Moira’s voice. When their eyes met, Ulrich rushed to the mirror, palms pressed against the glass. 

“Moira,” he said, “What black craft is this?”

“Your witch is bound with blood and magic to your queen. A much trickier situation than your own bond, much more difficult to sever.” said the goblin who had answered Moira’s call. 

The End

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