Elwin got in the hammock with me that night. He wasn't speaking much and I wasn't either. I was thinking about what Queen Keishara said. How had Theodore found their daughter? Or did she seek him out?
My body was starting to heal. The potion Elder Winterblade had made for me was doing its job. I was able to have a blanket put on top of me. Elwin turned in his sleep and put his arm around my waist. I winced but I didn't want to wake him up. And I was enjoying his arm on me. I put my hand on it and sighed quietly.
War is coming.... But did Theodore really have enough people to do such a thing? Our village was pretty small but there were other villages nearby. My father said that he told everyone it was Elwin who had stolen and beat me. The very idea made me angry.
"Ow!" Elwin said and I jumped.
"Sorry!" I said, quickly letting go of his arm.
He rubbed the spot where I had dug my nails into his skin.
"What's wrong?" he asked, settling back down on the pillow.
"Just thinking about everything," I sighed, turning my head to him.
He sighed and closed his eyes. "I can't believe this is happening. Perhaps your father was right. If you and I hadn't-"
I interrupted him with a kiss. It felt good to finally kiss him again without it hurting. He put his hand on my waist gently as he kissed me back. His other hand slid under my head and into my hair. I wanted to get closer but it would only hurt.
"Don't think like that," I said. "I love you and I wouldn't change a thing."
He smiled and closed his eyes again. He put his head near my shoulder and I twirled his hair around my fingers until he fell asleep again.
If what Queen Keishara had said a few weeks ago was true, though, then Elwin was our secret weapon. After all, it was his ancestor that won the last war between humans and elves. I really wanted to avoid war but, if it's Elwin's destiny, I wasn't going to do anything to get in the way of that.
He had said that he wasn't trained in combat, though....
I tried to sleep but my mind was too busy. I hummed quietly when the sun started to rise. Beside me, Elwin was starting to wake up.
"You have a beautiful voice," he mumbled.
"Thanks," I whispered.
"Did you sleep at all?"
"No. I can't get my mind to stop thinking."
"I'm sorry, my love." He sighed. "I have to go on patrol today."
He got out of the hammock and stretched. I didn't want him to go but I knew he had to be there in case Theodore showed up with the king and queen's daughter. They were staying in the colony until that happened. I sincerely hope it wouldn't.
Nothing happened for two days. I was getting better and now able to walk on my own. I changed into one of the regular outfits, not wanting to get the gowns dirty. When I walked out, Elwin smiled and kissed me.
"It's good to see you out of bed," he said.
"It's good to be out of bed. Where's Papa?"
"He's with Elder Winterblade. He wanted to learn about the potion he gave you."
I was about to go when there was a loud horn. Elwin gripped the bow and arrow and rushed to his post. I stood next to him, ignoring his orders to leave. He docked an arrow and pulled it back, his eyes squinting. He swore.
"It's Theodore," he whispered, "and he has a young she-elf with him. It must be their daughter."
They were right at the barrier.
"All right, my dear Tsarra," Theodore said darkly. "Take me in there."
"I told you I won't," Tsarra snapped.
"Just remember what your parents did to you," he said. "They erased your memories and yet they gave Elwin and Camila's theirs back."
Tsarra stared at the barrier. "I can't see it."
"It doesn't matter," he snapped. "Just walk forward, damn it."
She gasped when he slapped her.
Behind us, Queen Keishara whimpered. King Orist looked like he wanted to run out and attack Theodore himself. I held my breath. Perhaps Tsarra would fight off Theodore.
"If you don't do it, I will force you," Theodore snapped and I made to leave.
"Don't," Elwin hissed, grabbing my arm.
"I can't let him hurt her," I whispered angrily.
"You can't, Camila. If you do-"
"Do it!" Theodore yelled at Tsarra. "Now!"
Tsarra sighed and held her hand in front of her. Theodore quickly grabbed her wrist. She winced at his rough touch. My heart hurt for her. She pushed against the barrier and sighed in frustration.
"It won't let me through," she said.
"You're not trying hard enough!'
She glared at him. "I'm trying as hard as I can, you stupid man!"
He slapped her again and King Orist made an angry noise. The force of his slap made her stumble into the barrier. Somehow, she passed through, bringing Theodore with her. Everyone stood in shock, Theodore included. How!?
"No!" Arl yelled to my left.
I ran down to the ladder, ignoring Elwin's yells. Arrows were about to fly but Theodore held Tsarra in front of him. He was smirking in triumph.
"Go ahead," he shouted to the elves. "Shoot her. I'm sure your king and queen would really appreciate that."
"Let her go!" I yelled when I got to the ground.
Theodore smirked at me. "I'm not interest in you anymore, my dear Camila. Thank you for helping me find this place, by the way."
"What are going to do on your own?" I demanded. "You can't leave. You'll never find it again."
"And yet you did," he mocked. "No, I don't plan on leaving."
Elwin shot his arrow, hitting the ground beside Theodore's head. He jumped.
"I will not be so generous next time," he called down. "Release the princess and leave or I will shoot!"
"You wouldn't," he said but he didn't look very confident. "And I am not alone."
"What do you mean?" I demanded.
He smirked and the ground shuddered beneath us. I looked up at Elwin, fear rooting me to the spot. He was turning and nearly dropped his weapons. Over the hills came marching over 300 short beings. They could be only one thing.