~The Reflection~ pg 10

Civyl looked at Fiora, ”I will not say you must do this, but… if there is a way for me to wield the fire again – if there is a chance to lift this curse, I’d like to take it. Wouldn’t you?”

“Of course,” she replied quickly staring at him with a meaningful gaze, “but a full day to ride there and back… Can we afford to lose the time?”

Civyl had been wondering the same question but had come up with a solution. “With Alex and Borris both out of fighting commission for a while, I thought, perhaps we could borrow their horses to reach our destination on time.”

Fiora had nodded at the idea. “That could work… if they are willing.”

The old woman had stood then, as if making up the men’s minds for them. “That settles it then. I will take Civyl to try to remove his curse in the morning and you will stay here and tend to Alex. I put him in your charge.”

Fiora had made as if to argue but Nivia had fixed her with a stern gaze. “You caused his injury. Now you must mend it.”

Fiora’s argument had died on her lips as she ducked her head in submission. “Yes ma’am.”

Soon after the old woman had turned in for the night. “I trust that you can make your own beds,” she had said on her way up the stairs, more statement than question.

Rolling out their bedrolls in front of the hearth, he addressed her furrowed brow. “Are you sure you are okay with this. I won’t go if you don’t think it’s a good idea.”

“That’s not it,” Fiora shook her head, golden brown tresses falling across her shoulders with the movement. “I just wish I could go with. I hate to be separated from you.” She stared down at her bedroll and he felt there was more to the meaning behind her words when she said it again. “I hate it.”

He wasn’t sure which emotion had been the catalyst for his next action; boldness, compassion, selfishness… but he caught the corner of her bedroll and pulled it towards him, tucking it inside his own. “We do not have to be separated until morning.” He held his breath until she smiled at him, and curled up against his chest, she had fallen asleep in minutes. 

Now it was morning and she still slept in almost the same position. He did not want to leave her here either, but the prospect of being able to dance with the fire again… it pulled on him more than the mountain did. Perhaps it was because he couldn’t ever remember doing it before, but more likely it was because waltzing with the flame was a part of him. It was ingrained in every cell, seared into his soul. He stared at the embers that still glowed red from the hearth and the mottled red called his name. He was meant to wield the fire.

The End

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