AftermathMature

"Elwin!" I screamed, pushing over the dead goblin bodies. Other elves were coming to clear the elf bodies, both dead and injured. "Elwin, where are you!?"

The last place I had seen him was the table I ran over but his body was gone. I was shaking everywhere. The only other place he could be is with the goblins.

"Camila, wait!" I heard King Orist yell.

I ignored him and threw my sword to the ground, running as fast as I could after the goblins.

"Elwin, if you can hear me, tell me!" I screamed. Suddenly, my arm warmed. "Are you with the goblins!?"

Nothing. I skid to a halt. I was panting. If he wasn't with them, he was near here somewhere. I was by the gardens and I ran among them, tears streaming down my face.

"Elwin!" I sobbed. "Please tell me where you are somehow!"

The the most peculiar thing happened. Just as my arm warmed up, it pulled to the right. I spun and saw a green clothed arm fall. I ran as fast as I could, tripping over debris and dead bodies.

"Elwin!" I cried. "Are you under there?" Someone groaned. "Elwin," I sobbed in relief. I started moving the bodies. A house had fallen right on top of him. "Hold on, Elwin. I'm going to get you out of there."

Another pair of hands was helping me. My father had run after me. He was covered in goblin blood, too. We lifted as much as we could until the house came off the ground.

"Can you move?" my father asked.

"No," Elwin replied weakly.

"We need another pair of hands here!" my father yelled over his shoulder.

"Coming!" Arl yelled. "Is someone injured?"

I let him grab my part of the house. When they had it high enough I grabbed Elwin's left hand.

"This is going to hurt," I breathed, "but I can't think of another way to do it."

"Camila, who is it?" Arl demanded but I pulled with all my might. "Elwin!"

Elwin screamed in pain as we got him out from underneath the house. They let it fall and Arl hurried to his other side.

"Okay Elwin," he panted. "Where does it hurt?"

Elwin's eyes were closed. "Everywhere. Mostly shoulder. Left."

Arl tore the tunic off, revealing his bruised upper body. His left shoulder was bleeding and Arl paced his hands over it. He swore.

"There's something in there," he mumbled.

"Arrow head," Elwin breathed.

"Stop talking," I said. "We'll figure it out. Just hold on."

"Elwin, I'm sorry for this," Arl said.

"What are you going to do?" I asked.

"There's only one way I'm going to get this arrow out," he answered and picked up another arrow.

I winced and got on the ground. I put my body next to Elwin's. It was shaking and covered in sweat. I kissed him and ran my fingers through his hair. He visibly relaxed and I nodded grimly to Arl. With a look of regret, he stabbed the wound. Elwin screamed at the top of his lungs, his back arching from the pain, and I whimpered as I felt the the burning in my shoulder, too.

"Sh," I whispered, kissing his cheeks. They were wet from tears. "He's almost done. Then you'll be okay. Just hold on."

"Got it," Arl said a few minutes later.

He took both arrow heads out and placed his hands over the wound. It healed almost instantly. Elwin lay back, panting. His eyes opened halfway and I smiled down at him.

"Camila," he mumbled.

I shook my head. "Sleep, my love."

His eyes drifted shut and he fell asleep. My father lifted him up and carried him back to the colony where most of the land was cleared and a fire was being lit. We took him to where the recovering elves were while Arl went back to healing the others. I looked sadly at the bonfire. I knew what that was for.

"It's for their dead," I whispered to my father who was staring. "They burn their bodies so evil spirits cannot take it over."

The elves began to sing in their native tongue as the bodies were brought forward. I hummed along and my father did the same. Queen Keishara came up beside me and held my hand. She was with her husband and daughter. We were all crying. When the song was over, they placed the bodies in the fire.

I felt two hands on my shoulders and looked behind me. Elwin was standing, paler than normal, and putting most of his weight on me. He was watching the fire with tears in his eyes. I let him stand, knowing he was honoring the dead.

"Camila," Lura said, coming up to me. Her lower lip was quivering and she was covered in goblin blood, too. "I'm sorry."

"It's okay," I whispered.

She looked over her shoulder. "He was in there," she cried and I sighed, hugging her.

-

Elwin was carried into our hut. They set him on the hammock in just his pants. He slept a lot and I lay in the hammock with him. I put my head on his right shoulder, telling him stories and promising to never leave his side again.

The king and queen stayed with us. The story of Tsarra was an interesting one and they joined us in our hut with my father. Elwin started to sit up but King Orist told him to lie back down. I was behind him and had him put his head in my lap.

"After you found me," Tsarra whispered, "I was so angry. I didn't know that you weren't the one that controlled that. I was trying to find something to do when the goblins caught me." Her eyes filled with tears. "They recognized me and dragged me into their underground kingdom. I was in their dungeons for a while when they had a visitor. His name was Theodore Jensen. He was running out of women to marry and he wanted to purchase me. They asked for an insane amount. He said he'd try one more woman."

Elwin looked at me but I smiled sadly at him.

"He came back a couple weeks later, furious. He wanted me to tell him how an elf and human could fall in love. I didn't know which only infuriated him more. He finally bought me when they stormed the human palace. He threatened me that, if I didn't bring him here, he'd sell me to the goblins again. I didn't. It seems he enjoyed having things his way."

"He did," I whispered.

"He forced me through the barrier and...." She sighed and looked at her parents. "The barrier is no longer working. I think the only reason the humans have stayed away is because of fear and they saw the war."

"But how was it possible for him to force you through the barrier?" Elwin asked.

"I'm not exactly sure," she said with a small frown. "I think it was a combination of my desire to be home and his desire to find it."

Queen Keishara looked terrified. "What do we do?"

"I have an idea," I said. "But we need to get Elwin to where he can walk again."

The End

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