~The Dress~ pg 6

“Well that was good, wasn’t it?" He watched her eyes light up even as his mood spiraled down.  "She knew you all loved each other already, right?” 

“So it seemed, my dear," He nodded though he knew the rest of the story would prove her assertion false. "So it seemed. She and Borris got married almost immediately. Happiest day of his life, if you ask him. Happiest day of Chink’s life, too, probably. And they were with child very quickly.” Fiora actually clapped her hands with the news. Her enthusiasm echoed that of Avery’s when she’d found out. With a pang of sorrow, it struck him how similar they looked in that moment. In that dress… with that hair... and those eyes? He shook his head to rid it of the thought before he embarrassed himself. Alex hated to ruin her current joy but he could not finish the telling with it intact. “Our story does not have a happy ending.”

They were returning to the front of the house as he said it and the two warriors had finished their meal and talked quietly, still ignoring them. Fiora slowed down her walk. She looked at Alex then at Borris and Chink seeming to put the pieces together herself. Innocent eyes widened in worry. “Where is Avery? Where is the baby?” 

“Neither survived childbirth,” he confessed as he watched her face fall in something close to horror. It almost broke his heart anew. 

“And I’m… I’m wearing her dress,” she looked down at the billowy fabric around her waist as if really seeing it for the first time. “Oh, Tears of Wisdom…”

Alex shook his head at her expression. Tears of Wisdom, indeed. “Chink and Borris…” he lifted a hand towards the two but kept his voice down to not disturb them, “their love is one solidified in tragedy. When everything you hold dear in life is ripped from your grasp, you cling to whatever is left. So they held each other and cried for days and days. They would have starved in their grief if I had not forced them to eat.“ He paused in the telling to catch his breath. His wound throbbed with pain and his muscles were tired from holding himself upright. He turned their walk towards the woods where he could lean on some trees for a bit.

At the edge of the clearing he stopped and she let him. “The house where we had lived together held too much sorrow so we left. Left our home and our heritage; the burden of Kavaccet and the curse of The Wisdom behind us. That’s when we found Demil. He grew up in Brittner, the city that the Wisdom sent my parents to fight. His parents died then, too. He was only nine at the time living on the streets as an urchin. With so many deaths, there was no one left willing to take him in.” 

The End

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