Chapter Twelve: Aqua And Amethyst
“What do you mean half!?” Braylen bellowed, the glare she was aiming at each and every remaining member of the council that had yet to be imprisoned downstairs with her husband, was deadly and if looks could kill each and every one of them would be six feet under by now.
“The rebel groups attacked each armoury luckily the stronghold is still hidden and safe with most of the weapons but those in transit last night and the ones once at the compounds are gone as well as the test subjects.” one on her right said timidly.
“And you’re telling me this now! Those compounds were under your running, you should have had people guarding them, you have set everything back!”
“We didn’t have the manpower we did all we could” he replied to her.
“It was not my job to baby you, the number of men guarding those compounds was up to you and because of your ignorance my weapons are missing, this whole operation is relying on those weapons for our allies so that they can accompany us in taking down the Fallen. You have put this whole movement in jeopardy” her voice was venom, it dripped with seething animosity with every word she pronounced.
“Since when do we side with the humans, Braylen? After the war you detested them, but now we are allies under their say and agreements planning the demise of a whole clan, to commit genocide against our own race.”
“Anyone at this table who is against the future we hope to bare can join my husband and the others downstairs, I will not stand to be criticised by you. You were in those meetings, you all were so do not start backing out now when you had the chance to do so already.” she said harshly straightening her back and with it, her posture “My son is more reliable than all of you put together, now find out who The Ravens are or you won’t have to worry about seeing the future” Braylen snarled standing up and shoving her chair back, the legs scraped against the carpeted flooring soon followed by the clicking of her shoes and a squeak of the door hinges.
* * *
They neared the end of the bridge, the horses’ hooves clicked and clopped against the stone as they went in a timed rhythm.
Beneath the bridge ran the Eastern waters, deep blue and aqua green ripples lapped the bridge’s structures below, Kaydence had never seen the ocean for his own eyes only ever in paintings or book illustrations but it had always been a dream of his for him and his father to see it together, the reality of his dream, however, wasn’t as joyous.
Silhouettes of birds flew overhead following the cool salty breeze that brushed by pulling their hair along with it.
Kaydence was entranced, the smell gave a relaxing aura almost familiar and yet he had no recollection of an exact memory.
Almost as if he’d been here in a dream and his subconscious knew of the distant singing of birds, the bitter taste of salt on his tongue, the smell of salt and earth and the feeling of the ocean breeze caressing his skin.
Bregan would have loved it, they would have loved it together and in some ways, they still could, his father lived on within him still guiding him in his life’s path even if he wasn’t able to hold him or talk to him outside of the nightmares it was better than him not being there at all.
He’d savour the sensations for as long as he lived because for once in his life Kaydence found something else that set him at ease apart from the swaying grasses and rolling hills, a house by the sea wouldn’t be all bad he thought, a change of scenery and people, maybe he’d take time to travel before settling back down.
Mayfel might even join him if he wasn’t too eager to return home to the savages he called fellow villagers, it was still tough to fathom the pain his companion had gone through in such a short period of time.
Gazing to his left where said boy sat looking out to sea as his steed trotted along Kaydence put more thought into offering the proposition to him, although, was it too early to bring it up since they weren’t even close to actually having freedom from responsibility, maybe it could wait.
On a brighter note Mayfel seemed to be doing much better with the newly born light dowsing them in its light, they’d engaged in brief conversation but spoken nonetheless which in Kaydences books was a good result, the boy was stronger than he believed.
Kaydence just hoped they’d both be strong enough to get through the rest of it and still remain somewhat the same, he couldn’t see the visit to the King as their last job not if what Mayfel had said was true, if the High Council were that adamant to take over then they wouldn’t just stop at overthrowing the lands of Himiratia.
“Rena!” he heard Mayfel’s voice call out breaking him away from troubling thoughts.
“Mayfel you made it, what took you so long?” he saw the girl addressed as Rena smile and move towards Mayfel who’d dropped from his horse with a hiss that blended into the wind.
“Sorry had a little trouble before the bridge, we’re ok but I’m a bit bruised nothing serious” he said while approaching her and pulling her into a tight embrace, Mayfel was a good liar he’d have to bear that in mind for future reference.
“You always were the troublemaker” she laughed.
It was a brilliant sound, it was warm and gently like a mother’s tender hand.
“Don’t give Kaydence a bad impression of me” he said, breaking the gesture.
“So this is the guy you’ve been hanging out with. Not bad,” she stated giving him and the horse a once over before looking back to her friend ignoring Kaydences raised and questioning eyebrow.
“Rena can you not start flirting right in front of me please, we need your help, not dating services”
“Sorry for stating the obvious” she stated.
With a grunt Mayfel continued to say “Kaydence Banshaw meet Rena Lykaios, Rena Lykaios meet Kaydence Banshaw”
Both gave silent nods, Kaydence a little more hesitant than the woman before him.
Introductions done Rena spoke again “Anyway follow me it’s not far,”
Kaydence joined them on the ground taking hold of the horse’s reins and leading it on foot down the dirt road.
He watched on as Mayfel and Rena caught up, Kaydence truly admired their friendship, even living so far away with the occasional letters being sent between the two they acted like they were never apart almost like siblings more than lovers or friends.
He had to admire Rena as well she was beautiful, the dark purple locks tied up into a messy bun, vibrant aqua eyes and a flawless face as if sculpted with utmost care and skill.
Her body was covered with a cropped, blue cotton shirt and a simple pair of brown shorts, her feet protected from the rough ground by a pair of worn brown boots.
Everything clung to her body perfectly like she’d gotten the clothes especially fitted, he knew that wasn’t the case as that cost money as well as a shop in the capital but he definitely wasn’t one to judge.
“I thought you said you’d come to visit me Mayf, you promised” she said while jutting out her bottom lip to form a pout.
“I know, I know it’s just there’s been a lot going on but I’m here now aren’t I?” he replied
“I guess, so when do you need to get on this boat to Havens Gate?”
“Preferably tonight” Kaydence spoke up
“No can do the boats only go during the early hours of the morning you’ll have to wait until tomorrow”
“Ready for another tavern stay Mayfel?”
“No need you’re both staying with me my dad’s away with the market and my mum is visiting a friend and won’t be back until tomorrow afternoon” she explained opening the gate latched onto an ageing wooden fence stretching around the entire village.
“Well thank you, Rena, that’s very humble of you but there’s a chance we could be endangering you and Mayfel and I would prefer to keep you out of harm’s way” Kaydence said.
“Mayf what is he on about? What have you gotten yourself into?” she scolded.
“I can’t say”
“What do you mean you can’t say? I know you were vague in your letters but telling me now that I’m in danger and yet not telling me why is pushing it”
“I know and I’m sorry, I really am”
“Well, you’re both staying with me either way. If trouble comes then you both can defend me since it’s your problem in the first place” she snapped.
“Rena-” Mayfel began only to be shut down with a warning glance of ice.
“It seems like you’ve both had quite the journey”
“Yes we have” Mayfel muttered walking through the gateway.
“He’s had a tough time lately. He told me things about his past too, he’s been through a lot” Kaydence said following Mayfel’s horse through while leading his own behind with Rena following closing the gate.
“If you haven’t noticed already, Mayfel can be stubborn and narrow-minded at times but he means well” she replied
“He has a boarded mind and rarely lets people in. He had to raise himself so he’s quite a closed-off person to most, usually, people have to earn his trust to even get him to tell them what village he’s from”
“I can hear you both back there, I’d like it if you didn’t talk about my personal life behind my back, quite literally” he called back to them opening up the stable door and leading his mare inside and removing the equipment and stroking its silky hair.
“Just promise me you’ll look after him” she whispered momentarily stopping Kaydence in his tracks.
“I’ve already made that promise to myself but if it makes you feel better then, I promise”
Kaydences mare took up the stall next to Mayfel’s, he repeated the same process as Rena watched from the doorway, the light streaking in from behind her and silhouetting her like a lunar eclipse.
She graced him a tender smile before stepping out Mayfel following suit shortly after without speaking a word in his direction let alone sparing a look.
Had talking about him a little upset him that much? Surely not but then what was causing him to be so suddenly blunt and abnormal.
Kaydence thought of his promise to Rena and couldn’t help but think that he’d already broken it.
Remembering Mayfel’s furrowed eyebrows and dusted pink lips trying to pronounce the words of Rena’s letter back at the Hollow just made it seem like he’d failed even more after the boy was forced to take a life permanently scarring himself mentally, he’d hurt him more times than he thought.
Everything inside of him wanted to protect the innocent side of Mayfel who seemed to at least trust him slightly enough to talk about his dad and his troubles but now he might have hurt him and he hated the idea of those Indigo eyes never looking into his own again or even worse, for them to look at him with hatred or betrayal.
Kaydence struggled with feelings he always had and struggled, even more, to actually express and talk about them so he didn’t know exactly how he was going to explain and apologise to him without making a complete and utter fool of himself.
Then again maybe that’s the point of apologising, to make yourself look stupid so the other person feels better and forgives you more for embarrassing yourself, it was just a though but he hoped it would at least work out.