From Above the Forest

Flowers, Dances, and Old Friends

EDIT: 1/8/2013

Did some aesthitic updates :)

and lol to Logically Psycho, even after editing it again, my spelling still isn't 'abominable'

Sorry for not updating XD

Thanks to the reviewers!

*ps, to Logically Psycho...What do you mean my spelling is 'Abominable' ?!

I used spell check, along with my own knowledge of words, and nothing is wrong. Please point out what I've got in my spelling that is so terrible.


Luna wrapped here cloak tighter around her, trying to keep in as much warmth as possible. She pulled her hood over her head, shielding her face from the biting wind. She glanced up at Misty, saddled on her horse and shaking from the cold.

They had been traveling for two weeks, already crossing one mountain. It had been tough, testing the horses' endurance. Luna urged Nimya on, trotting beside Xen.

"Felling alright?" He asked, smiling cheerily. The last two days had bee kind to them, as they had reached a valley between two of the mountains, filled with luscious green grass and vegetation. Within the last few hours, however, they had entered another bit of the mountains.

"I was thinking we could stop and take a break for few minutes. Lunch and a stretch?" She asked.

Xen peered over his shoulder at Tarack. "Sound good to you?" Tarack nodded as they stopped, dismounting.

"So.." Xen said through a mouth of jerky. "How are we going to sneak into Dauf?"

"Sneak? Why.." She trailed off.

"Because half of Obili is hunting us." He pointed out, reaching into the bad for his wineskin.

Luna sighed, stretching her legs. "So what's the plan?" She asked, resting next to Xen.

Tarack spoke up.

"Well...before we ran into you, we were thinking about going to the annual ball...It's for the King and Queen. It's also-"

"-one of their few appearances they ever make." Xen finished for him.

"So you're saying we could sneak in that way?" Misty inquired.

"More or less." He shrugged.

"Wait," Misty stopped. "What were you two going to do at the ball?"

Tarack spared a warning glance at Xen.

"Oh come on, Tarack. We've been traveling together for a month now. I think we can trust them!"

Tarack looked away. "I suppose.."

Xen turned to Luna, sitting in front of her. "While the crowd is distracted, we were going to rob the infamous jewel keep. They have so many precious jewels in there that it would keep us set for the next century." He finished with a grin.

"Well, time to get going?"

Luna curled into her bag. . After several more hours of fighting the snow and freezing winds, they'd finally managed to reach a small valley, safe from the powerful frozen fury of the mountains.

She inched closer to the fire, taking in as much heat as possible. She yearned for her warm bed back at home, under the woolen covers and a soft feather mattress under her head. Her imaginary bliss was interrupted by a tap on her shoulder.

She scowled as she turned over, meeting Xen's face. "What?" She whispered.

"I want to talk to you." He whispered back. He got up quietly, holding out his hand.

Luna sat up, moving the blanket to the side.

"Why?" She asked. He crossed his arms. "I want to discuss some things regarding your capture."

His face was serious. Luna grimaced, standing up. Xen took her hand, leading her away from the camp.

They had been walking about 10 minutes now, Xen gripping her hand tightly. She didn't know why, but it made her heart race.

After reaching a small clearing, full of white poppy flowers, they stopped. He motioned for her to sit down. She did, staring at him with a confused face.

"Luna," He began. "I think something's wrong. After we rescued you from Hakan, I've sensed your magic...or lack of it. I want you to cast a basic light spell." He crossed his arms, looking at her, an almost worried expression on his face.

Luna's mouth opened. Even in the dark, she could see his concern.

"I...I've never been good with magic. At all. You know this!" She pleaded.

"Luna." He stated her name firmly, grasping her by the shoulders.

She met his eyes, then sighed, giving in.

"Ilumniati!" She ordered.


She tried again, shouting the command.

Her brow furrowed, she looked at Xen for help.

"What...what's happening?!" She stood up, inches from him, her voice cracking.

"What did you see when you rescued me. Was Hakan there? What was he doing." She inquired urgently.

Xen sighed. "Luna, I only got there after they were finished. He did mention that he was 'finished' with you, whatever that meant." She glanced up, hugging her arms around her. She scanned his face, searching for anything.

He rested himself on a rock sitting in the midst of the flowers, pulling her down with him.

"I don't know." He hold her arm, tracing the twisting, swirling tattoos. "I don't know what these mean, either." He entwined his fingers in hers.

"So, what kind of dress do you want?" He asked her quietly.

Luna cocked her head. "What dress?"

Xen laughed, amused. "We're sneaking into a ball, Luna. We can't show up looking like we just crawled out of a sewer." He grinned.

Luna smiled softly, lying back in the purple white flowers. A faint breeze rustled the trees as they enjoyed a few moments of silence.

"What's the theme? Don't parties like that have one?" Luna asked, turning her head toward him.

"Yes, but we didn't have enough time to do all of the research. We ran into you while we were getting more information."

" why do we have to stop by Dauf?" She asked, moving her hands behind her head.

"We need more information as how to get into Ellesmera, let along get through Du Weldenvarden. I'm sure if there are other elves, they've protected it quite well, hence the reason almost no one makes it out alive when they go."

"Almost?" She sat up on her elbows.

"One man is rumored to have made it out. He's hard to find, but for an event like this, he'll surely be in town for a few days."

Luna shivered, and Xen sat up, draping his cloak over her.

"Well, I think the fire's warmer than these flowers. Ready to head back?" He stood up, offering his hand.

They walked back, Luna feeling more at peace then before.

Another week passed, and they had climbed their last mountain.

Luna and Xen had practiced their sparring every night, helping Luna regain her strength. She slowly perfected her sword fighting, but stayed quiet about magic. She was thankful that Xen hadn't told Tarack and Misty about anything yet.

They were only a day, if that much, from Dauf, and only had that much time to prepare a plan.

"Luna!" She hear Misty call.

"I can see it! I can see Dauf!" She cried excitedly. Luna smiled as she leaned back in the saddle she was sharing with Xen. She hugged his waist as they met Misty and Tarack on top of the hill.

Dauf was a major city, with large, stone walls and many towers used for archers. They had quite the military power, another reason as to why the ball was held there.

Dauf was surrounded by fields, mostly used for farming and herding. The farmers and townsfolk lived outside the walls, in huts, while castle workers and servants lived inside the walls.

"Well, we should find what to wear for tonight. From what that merchant told me, the theme is masquerade." Tarack said.

"I just want to find a good dress!" Misty divulged excitedly.


Misty tugged on Luna's sleeve as she pointed out another dress in the window shop.

"Look at that one, it'd look wonderful!" She exclaimed, pulling her into the store.

Xen and Tarack had gone off to find their own costumes, as Misty had drug Luna from shop to shop.

Luna examined the silky green fabric of a lovely embroidered gown. Misty held up a light blue dress, smoothing it out.

Luna walked over to another dress pinned to mannequin. It was a deep purple gown, it's sleeves hanging off the shoulder. The fabric was smooth and silky, having a slight sheen.

She smiled. "Well, I've found mine. You?" Misty has already paid for the blue dress, it folded in her arms.

Luna smiled back to her. "Let's find the boys. The ball begins a few hours."

Xen knocked on the door to Misty and Luna's room. They had been in there an hour.

'I thought they were only getting dressed...women.' he muttered to himself.

Misty had already finished getting dressed, but Luna was having difficulty finishing.

The soft silk slipped across her skin, this being one of the finest dresses she'd ever worn. Luna tied the strings of the corset, but felt two hands taking them from her's.

"Xen.." She said. She turned around, him finishing the knot. He smiled, stepping back.

"You look beautiful." He rested his hand on her cheek. He took another step closer, his eyes connecting with hers. She blushed as he moved his head closer. Her heart sped up as she felt her blood pound in her ears. She felt his breath on her lips when-

"LUNA!" Misty yelled as she knocked on the door. She jerked away as Misty stepped in, Tarack in the hall.

"Yes, we're coming. Xen and I were talking." She blurted hurriedly. She adjusted her hair one last time before Xen took her arm, leading her out the door of the inn.


The group walked down the decorated street, arm in arm. Luna enjoyed the lights as they danced off her skin. An elaborate array of every color was bouncing off the walls and street. Intricately designed lanterns hung off of every lamppost and door. Metal dragons moved along the lanterns, enchanted with magic.

Luna smiled as music filled the air, accompanied by the smells of a thousand different foods. Various shops along the street sold objects of every kinds, ranging from weapons, cakes, breads, clothes, everything!

She spotted Misty and Tarack arm in arm, playing a game with street vendors.

Xen pulled her toward a table, filled with hundreds of colorful fruits.

Xen plucked a few grapes. "Here, try these." He said, grinning.

Luna bit her lip, unsure. She looked doubtfully at the fruit, but Xen gently pushed it to her lips. She sighed, accepting the grape. Her eyes opened in shock as the taste sank in. It was sour, but quickly changed to a sweet taste. "Good, right?" He laughed at her reaction.

"Mmh, these are good!" She exclaimed. Xen smiled as he walked back over to the table. For the first time that night she noticed his attire. He was wearing a gold and green overlay ed tunic, with deep green trousers. He wore his usual boots, but they had been cleaned. She looked up, meeting his smirking eyes. "Interested in something, my lady?" He held out his hand.

The music changed to a more lively beat, and Luna beamed.

"Xen," She began as they danced, inches apart. "Are we known here? Do they know about...them."

Xen chuckled. "No, no one knows who we are, after all, that's what these masks are for."

"Then how will we find our informant?" She asked keeping in time with the steps. Xen spun her, then pulled her back into his arms. "We'll meet him tomorrow." He grinned, resting is hand on her hip.

The music slowed, as Luna looked up. "Wait, so we didn't have to do this whole dance?" She asked.

Xen laughed, then looked into her eyes. "I figured it would be fun." He stated. .

"We just spent a third of our money on costumes." Luna argued, her voice in a hushed whisper. Xen shrugged his shoulders nonchalantly.

"Tarack and I have stashes of money hidden all over Obili, at least I hope they're still there." He mumbled the last part. Luna cast him a curious gaze. He took her hand, leading her to a small drink stand and handed her a small glass of elven wine. He took one for himself and sat down a stone bench with dragons carved along the sides.

"Luna, whatever might happen here, I want you to know that I'm on your side. I wouldn't leave you, and this group, for anything." He said, forewarning in his eyes. Luna put her hand over his, interlocking their fingers.

"Xen, what's going on? You've been unusually mushy, you've been avoiding Tarack, and now this?" She searched his eyes for an answer, but all she got was uncertainty and worry.

The crowd, lights, loud laughter and chatter all drowned away. She lifter her hand to his face as he pulled away.

The music died to a stop, as the dance ended and couples departed.

"LUNA!-"a terrified shriek came from the distance. Her heart pounded in her chest from shock . A group of guards had cornered Misty and Tarack, their sword and arrows drawn.

Xen pulled out his daggers, as Luna slipped a blade from her leg.

"What's going on here?!" bellowed a voice. Luna glanced at Xen, his face had gone white.

The guards immediately stopped, bowed, then walked away, in two files.

Misty's eyes widened as she grabbed Tarack's hand, pulling him to Luna and Xen.

A tall elf practically hopped down the stairs, his waist length black hair trailing in the wind.

"Xen...who is this?" Luna asked him, resting her hand on his shoulder.

He was dressed in deep red tunic, with black pants. Luna could tell by real gold trimming that he was a noble, or at least very wealthy. His light gray eyes were peaceful, but surprised and amused by the latest events.

"Xen? Is that you?" He asked, his musical voice drifting over the crowd, now distracted by a group of fiery performers.

"What?" Luna walked up to Xen, her eyes confused.

He took a deep breath, standing up straighter. "Yes...Uncle."


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