~The Listener~ pg 4

However, today she had not like what she heard. The wind whispered across her skin things that did not make sense. Civyl was retrieving his pack from beyond the clearing. When had he set it there? And why? It was in the wrong direction. The air also brought her a description of the stick he had tried to wield, the smell of oil suggested a torch. What need had he for taking the flame with him? Then a breeze brought news that the ground to the north had been recently disturbed by long-strided footfalls. If she had woken to find Civyl gone, the trail would have made more sense, but had he left and returned instead? For what purpose?

The most disturbing piece of information that the wind had shared was an answer to her direct question. She had asked it where the snake Civyl had scared off was so she could avoid it with a wide berth. But the wind could not find the snake or any evidence of its retreating path. Nor did it whisper any sign of any snake within a sunlight's walk. Either the snake could move without disturbing the ground or there had been no snake at all. She shuddered to hope that a snake was capable of such movement, but she did not even know what to think if the alternative were true.

As the last bit of moisture had been carried away to feed the clouds, Fiora dropped her hands with a sinking feeling. Confusion swirled in her mind and her heart as she had come to a realization. The man in the clearing – who had woken her with the sound of his knife in her ear – was not her Civyl.

No, the man behind her now was a stranger and she should not trust him to honor her as Civyl would. Why then, she scolded herself, do you blindly let him walk behind you? Of course, she did not need her vision to keep an eye on him. Better for him to think she could not see what he was doing. Fiora opened herself up to the words of the wind as she moved forward and just listened.

The End

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