Nivia came very close staring at his face. He was glad he had an excuse to stare back. Stepping back, she frowned. She clucked her tongue and shook her head. Civyl did not like her disapproval. “What?” Akasha asked, “Did I miss something?”
“Oh no, there is nothing wrong, Master. I just hadn’t realized…” she paused, making Civyl nervous.
“What?!” Civyl added to the query. “What is it?”
She shrugged in a fashion that left him more nervous than ever, “It’s just that my eyes are green and… your eyes... Well, they were blue, but now you have one blue and one green. Not quite normal, but serviceable none the less.”
“Hmm,” Akasha was staring at him again. “I see what you mean. I will have to make sure that future patients know this aspect of the treatment.”
Nivia clucked again, but this time was nodding her head. “Yes, yes. Best they know beforehand if you do not want them asking for a refund.”
Civyl felt like he was some kind of experiment… which he supposed he was. But he didn’t like the way they both studied him. It was as if he were on exhibit like one of the carnival’s two headed side-shows. Clearing his throat, he decided to change the subject. “I’ve held up my end of the bargain so how about you tell us who can lift my curse, and we will trouble you no further.”
Nivia frowned even deeper, though in her present state, it was actually attractive. Akasha seemed annoyed that his specimen was protesting, but he was nodding his head. “Yes, I suppose you are right. I can do no more for you. The man you seek is the same man who placed the curse on you in the first place.”
Civyl waited for him to continue. When he was silent too long for Civyl’s taste, he prompted him. “And that is…?”
Akasha looked surprised by the question. “I do not know, fire dancer. I was not there when you received it.” A flash of anger boiled inside of him and Akasha raised his hands in defense. “I never said I knew his name, just that I knew there was only one who could lift it. This kind of curse can only be lifted by the caster and that is all I know.”
The man had manipulated him! He was no closer to lifting the curse than when he had left Nivia’s house! “Fine,” Civyl growled jumping off the table and stumbling from the abruptness of it. He grabbed at a tree for stability and closed his new eye so the ground would stop wobbling in front of him. “Come on, Nivia, we leave, now.”
“But Akasha said-“
“NOW!” he cut her off and she started. Luckily the old, er… young woman did not argue further and started heading for the horses. Perhaps she recognized his need to be away from this place… and this man who had misled him into agreeing to be his momentary play thing, but no more. Civyl was done with him. He turned to Akasha with forced pleasantness, though he could not manage a smile. “Thank you, sir, for the help you have given us, but as you have already said; you can do no more and I will impose no further.”
Akasha nodded curtly with a clouded expression that Civyl could not read. His tone was professional. “Cover it when it bothers you. Practice it when it doesn’t.” Civyl thought that was the end of it when a flicker of something more humane softened his eyes. “I am sorry I could not meet your expectations.”
Civyl turned away without responding. There was an ache in his side where none had been previously. It was time to get back to his quest. Time to retrieve Fiora and get to the pass as quickly as he could.