Liberty of the air

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Patrick - Missing Liberty

Watching Libby be driven away from me, was one of the hardest things I have had to do these last 10 years. that includes all the television interviews, the pretending to be a 23-year-old fresh Rockstar on the scene as well. the whole pretending to be someone I wasn’t for the press. but I didn’t have to pretend with Libby, yes I had to hide the drinking of blood part but she never seemed to judge anything I would say, I’m not saying we always agreed. because hell we’ve had a disagreement. but she seems to know how to wrap me around her fingers and make me forget what we were even talking about. I had been tempted to pull her out the car and kiss her, try to convince her to stay with me this summer. but I could tell already her friends didn’t like me. I didn’t want that, I wanted them to trust me. which I know is stupid, who cares what humans think. but right then I did. When she was gone, I realized there was little point in returning to the hotel close to her college. I might as well go to my home I hadn’t been to in such a long time. the moment I got home though, I regretted it.

“Finally shes gone then.” Sandy sneered from where she lay on my couch watching my TV that took up the whole wall,

“Make yourself at home Sandy,” I say my voice was thick with sarcasm. Sandy had invaded my life and taken over quite a few years ago. it started when I needed a manager to help me in the human music industry. Sandy was the best, unfortunately, she had also happened to be an ex-girlfriend. I say that loosely. our relationship had lasted 3 days and she had clung to me those whole 3 days. I should have headed Abicus’s advice and gone to anyone but her, but she had been the best. the moment I had put my blood on that contract though I had been made to regret it. she was normally a bitch but her jealousy of me actually having a long time girlfriend was too much. I was so tempted to break the contract and pay the price. but because of whom I had fallen for, I knew that put Libby in danger. so even though Sandy was constantly being a bitch to Libby. hell even to Helena. she, unfortunately, had to stay. until I could find a way to be with a human without the shit storm Sandy would bring. there was no doubt she would bring it. she had threatened it the first time I took Libby to my concert. it had been what she was threatening when I hurt Libby. I would never be able to fully forget the look of pain on her face. I felt so guilty it killed a part of me. but Libby seemed to be able to help just by being her. She was amazing and I already couldn’t imagine my life without her, which was silly. I had never really fully had her. I never fully would. one day she will be old and grey and I will still be myself, looking this age. We would never have a future as I knew deep down a future with her was against the law and as a king, I couldn’t break that ancient law. But she had made me feel more alive than I have in years. Lee grabs the remote out of Sandys’ hand and turns on a football match, that was recorded. Part of me was tempted to google the results and tell him, but that wouldn’t be the nicest thing to do.

“Please tell me you’re over the little child now.” Sandy almost spat at me.

“She’s just a human.” Sandy snapped, she really knew how to push my buttons. did she really think it was a good idea? contract or not!

“She will grow old and die before you age a day.” Sandy was saying.

“Sandy shut up,” I say, I need her to. her voice goes straight through me and right now its hurting more than her shriek normally could.

“What?” Sandy asks like I’m the one who insulted her like I’m the one in the wrong.

“you’ve made your opinion of Libby clear the whole time I have been with her,” I inform her.

I thought about my first time with Liberty. The moment I told her my name, how she had said it, her voice curious rather than fearful like my name was the most amazing thing she had ever heard. Her beautiful Topaz blue eyes shining with questions I wanted to answer. Her little toes that were the softest of pinks. Her shoulder length natural blonde hair, that wasn’t curly but seemed to have a wave to it. You know the beach hair, windswept look. There was just something so wild child about her. That she was born to be outside. That she was born for adventure. I couldn’t imagine her in a classroom. when she sits and studies it’s like a mystery in itself, the way she chews her pen or pencil. the way her little nose screws up at the page as if that will make it make sense. I hadn’t been able to picture her as a high school teacher at all, maybe younger children yes, but not high school. From the moment I met her indoors had been the furthest from my mind. She was someone I could see running along on a beach, climbing a cliff. She was just well she was her. Liberty. Free.

“The queen would never approve.” Sandy was saying. The queen Jenefer wouldn’t. No, and that’s why I had to be careful with Libby, the truth was it would break my heart to walk away from her. but I loved her enough to walk away if it would keep her safe. I wouldn’t be selfish with her life.

“What do you think Lee, Abacus?” I ask they have both been rather silent on the matter the last few months really. I know they both don’t mind her, Abicus is fine when I ask him to protect her, he doesn’t even flinch. Lee is the same, often I can see him trying not to laugh at what she does. Like the amount of shoes shes misplaced the last few months. I’ve stopped even getting them for her.

“Liberty is different,” Abicus says leaving it at that.

“He has a point she is a sandwich short of a picnic. Come on the girl purposely has gone to live somewhere with no electricity.” Sandy says finding that jive at Libby.

“What do you think of her Lee?” I ask

“She’s a lovely sweet kid.” He says leaving it at that.

“Sweet kid! Kid Pat! KID shes 21! Shes not 190 shes a little child! You are old enough to be her great, great, great grandfather.” Sandy says.

“you want a blonde, go for a blonde Amaris.” Sandy snaps Yeah you? I thought but I didn’t question. We had made that mistake already and I never would go there again.

“you still think she’s a halfling?” Lee asks me, Abicus looks away from me, as if he’s deep in thought. would it really change anything if she was? Had there ever been an Amaris and Halfling relationship on record?

“you’ve met all her friends and her sister. There’s just something.”

“different,” Abicus says seriously.

“the 4 of them are on drugs!” Lee says trying not to laugh, yeah part of me had wondered, but with how often I’m with Libby, I would have seen her using if she was. I think she drinks too much, but I’ve never seen her take drugs.

“There is no evidence they are on drugs!” I snap defending Libby though.

I remember the first time I had kissed Libby’s perfect little lips. She had touched my hand and the spark that had lit me up, was like all my magic had zapped me. Like a storm in my stomach and under my skin. Like I was the lightning and she, she was my thunder. She had looked at me as if she felt it too. Then I had pulled her on my lap. I had kissed her and my body was electrified. I had made out with her until we got to the hotel. Then I had led her up. I destroyed her clothes, in my rush to discover her in her glory. When she was laid there exhausted I had watched her swallow her neck so long and tempting. The bottom of her hair tickling her neck. I had buried my head in her neck kissing. but I didn’t feel right taking a bite without her permission and right then I had decided she had drunk too much to make that choice. Her reaction to me simply kissing, had hypnotized me. But it was her scent that had me. she smelt like summer, like a fresh breeze, like honey, alyssum, vanilla, and Jasmine.

“At least now you can get over her,” Sandy says matter of fact. That was the scary thing right now, the summer break was actually a long time for Libby to meet someone. a human, someone she can grow old with. someone whom she can have a future with.

“You know what Sandy you’re right,” I say deadly serious.

“its time I get over a few things from the past,” I say deadly serious.

“Good.” She says a smile on her lip.

“Precisely.” She says.

“Why did we break up?” I ask her, deadly serious pretending I can’t remember why. Abicus bites his lip, I see a smile on his face and can tell he is trying not to laugh.

“I honestly can’t remember Pat,” Sandy tells me.

“Perhaps you should remember. And also remember that if I was going to let things of my past go. You will be one of those things. Even with a contract” I inform her, she pushed it too far. I think if I talked to Helena she would help me say the reason I got rid of Sandy was because of the insults to Helena about our baby girl. every day I miss Iris. I always will, I should have fired Sandy when she made the comment about Iris.

“Just a friendly warning. Leave Libby alone.” I say firmly.

“she will take you for a mug, who hasn’t heard of you, Pat,” Sandy says as if shes just trying to protect me.

“she didn’t fake her reaction to watching me live the first time. I can hear her heartbeat. I know when she lies to me.” I say truthfully, I think that’s what it is worrying me currently.

Her heart had been skipping so many beats when I was talking about her going home. I feared she wasn’t coming back. I needed to talk to her, hold her. It was stupid. I pulled a piece of paper off the side. I use them for jotting songs down at the drop of a hat. But right now, it was Libby I needed to write to. she might not have her phone, but she would get my letters. Was it to needy to send her a letter the actual day she leaves?

Libby my little free spirit

I write.

Did you get to your parents okay?

What’s it like there to go from college to home? Do you need me to send anything?

Are you enjoying your break?

here is a list of all my tour locations and dates. I will make sure there are tickets for you at all locations, Just in case, you can make it. If you fancy joining me at any point just send me a letter or give me a call. Let me know and I will have you drove out to me if you can’t get there.

I wanted to write, I miss you. I wanted to write love. But it had only been a few hours since she left. I didn’t want to rush her. I hand the letter to Lee. “Post this is 5 days,” I tell him. “Don’t let me convince you to send it sooner,” I tell him. he nods and puts it in his front pocket.

“You have her address if you miss her that much,” Lee mumbles. He has a point. but with what Libby had said about her family. I had a feeling I wouldn’t be welcome until expected. She had said I could come near the end of the summer, just not at the beginning. I needed to give her time. after all whats the old saying, absence makes love stronger? I look at my cell phone, looking at the picture I had snapped the other day of Libby, shes got her studying this makes no sense face on. I can’t imagine a life without her, now I know her. its only been months but I already can’t remember what I used to do. I flick to the next picture of her. shes dancing in it, her huge smile lighting up her whole face. Her blue eyes sparkling telling me of adventures that haven’t happened yet. Unless she herself is my adventure. Wow, I know more of where I’m going with that song, one thing Libby recently has done, she’s taken away my writer’s block. I flip to the next picture, Libbys stood in a hallway, looking at a picture thoughtfully. Shes in a light blue floor-length organic cotton dress that I had brought her, blue flowers in her hair like a halo. it was a human art exhibit. I had managed to get us in without too many risks of photos and I wanted to show Libby off, even if I couldn’t to my own kind. I wanted Libby to know I wasn’t hiding her, even if I felt like I was. I flick to the next picture of her, Libby is dancing again in it. ee stood next to her looking straight at me, a small smile on his face as if he knew I was mesmerized by the little wild child’s movements. she is gorgeous and she knows how exactly to move to have men drooling. I would like to claim she doesn’t know her effect on men, but I had watched her a few weeks before I went over and claimed her again. She never went off with any of them, I think if she even had made a move, I would have gone and stopped it without a moment’s hesitation. even not knowing her, like I did now. she wasn’t shy about people touching her body. None of the girls were. Sandy starts then talking about my next gig and I know I have to pay her attention, even if that’s hard in itself. I knew Sandy puts a lot into managing me. She puts more into my image than I do.

5 weeks later.

As I come off the stage, I try not to break my guitar. I was annoyed and hurt. I tried not to let it affect my music, but it was hard not to! I had a fight with Sandy before I went on stage, which was why I was even angrier than I normally am. But Libby hadn’t replied to me, I hadn’t heard a single word from her in 5 weeks! her summer break would be over soon and I hadn’t heard a peep. hell, I’ve been to her college to see if she has registered for housing, anything but she hasnt. they haven’t had a beep from her at all. shes only got a week left to register for dorm housing. Hell if she hadn’t already paid for next years it would be too much. I had written her another two letters since my first one, but with no reply, I hadn’t wanted to seem too needy. But I needed to hear from her. We were close enough to her address, I had googled it, to see how long it would take me to drive there. it was almost the end of the summer. We were close enough that I could just pop round for a few hours tomorrow and hope she. hope she what wasn’t over me? hadn’t met someone else? But no Sandy was being an absolute bitch about it, arranging interviews left right and center so I didn’t even have 5 minutes to myself to breathe. Let alone go to Libbys. I wanted to go check on her. I put my guitar down nicely. Because it wasn’t my guitars fault I was in a mood.

“Well done you were amazing like always,” Sandy says with a smug smile as if shes personally responsible for my performance. the fact I didn’t miss a few of my own cues today was a miracle. Hell if Libby had turned up I would have performed the new song I had written about her today.

“There were lots of pretty blondes in the front row.” She says matter of fact, I wondered if she had arranged that. now I know she had. I hadn’t and didn’t want to even go near any other girl!

“Yes, I am aware.” I snap annoyed as hell, to the games, Sandy has been playing. Lee watches me from where he’s stood leaning against a wall.

“She would have been here out of any show if she was going to come,” Lee says, that is not a comfort Leeroy!

“I am aware.” I snap at him, Abicus looks at Lee like he knows its the wrong thing to say.

“Perhaps she just couldn’t make it currently. it’s not long until she will be back at college and you’ll be off tour.” Abicus says calmly. I look at the present I have brought Libby for her birthday. all wrapped and ready to give her. Her birthday which just happens to be tomorrow. I look at the light blue wrapping paper, covered in birds and clouds. The wrapping paper had felt so right. The presents had felt so right. A white floor-length silk dress. Lee had told me it looked too much like a wedding dress, but when I had seen it I knew it was meant for Liberty. Even if she wasn’t meant for me.

“Perhaps you could post it,” Lee says.

“Or I could drop it off,” Abicus says calmly like he didn’t just offer me a huge lifeline! I looked at him, taken aback. He would do that?

“I will think about it, but I wished to give it to her myself,” I say truthfully, but hell I might send him anyway! I wished to see her in the dress, I wished to see her in the night dress I brought her as well. I wished to see her in the underwear and out of it. hell, I would settle for simply seeing her!

“If you want though I have got my bike on me and I am more than happy to run it down for you,” Abicus says.

“In fact, I will be there and back quicker than a car could even get out this city,” Abicus says.

“You know the one with the sidecar so it would be perfectly safe, in there,” Abicus says calmly. I looked at him wondering why was he trying to sell me on the safety of his motorbike when I would more than happily trust him taking the present. Wait the sidecar, like me? or like bringing her back?

“that sounds fine Abicus,” I say looking at him, he nods at me as if he knows what I want, which makes one of us. Sandy went to grab it to shove to Abicus, but he says.

“That’s fine I will collect it in the morning from your room, say around 7?” he says.

“Sounds great,” I tell him, not sure if he’s inviting me to come, or if he’s going to bring her back. but hell him at least seeing evidence that shes fine I will take for now.

“well I’m beat, I’m going to turn in,” I say to them all because I need to vent at myself.

“You can’t yet Pat you’ve got autographs to sign, you’ve got,” Sandy says.

“Straight after that,” I mumble annoyed at this, why did I ever want to be a rockstar? oh yeah, the music. I’m regretting that!

I was ready to leave before the knock on my bedroom door. I was ready to leave at 5 am, waiting around for 7 had felt like torture. I opened the door as soon as it was knocked. Lee stood there not Abicus.

“I knew it,” he said, but he had a smile on his face like he suspected it all along.

“cover.” I shrug at him.

“I can't let you go on that death trap of a bike. I also can't let you break that guard rule of having at least two of us on you.” Lee informs me, Telltale, I want to call him I was a bloody king! I was in charge not him!

“without me,” Lee says and he chucks me a set of car keys.

“We take the car,” he says firmly. I laugh and follow him down. Abicus was sat in the garage, on his bike. his helmet on ready, a spare in the sidecar.

“Yeah, that wasn’t going to work,” Lee tells him laughing.

"How did you expect to bring them both back?" Lee asks Abicus sounding interested. as if it was the unspoken knowledge that I would be bringing Liberty back with me. unless she really didn't want to come.

“Catch,” I say chucking Abicus the car keys. He caught them and looked slightly disappointed.

“I never get to go on my bike,” he mumbled. I tried not to laugh, because Abicus could have easily used the car, he just wanted an excuse for a ride on his motorbike. We all went up to the black Jeep and climb in. Not the limo today, I want to go under the radar as much as possible.

“You know the way?” I ask

“I google mapped her address,” Abicus informs me.

“you'll make it for your performance Friday don’t stress,” Lee tells me.

"I'm not worried about that," I say seriously, as hell I'm not. Sandy can cancel my interviews. I'm having a much needed few days off. it was Libby's reaction that I was worried about.

After what felt like forever, the car came to a slow down a huge country lane through the woods.

"Are you sure this is right?" Lee asks Abicus.

"Yeah," Abicus says looking at his cell phone that is hung on the window and still directing us down little lanes.

"I can't see any houses around here Abicus are you sure we didn't take a wrong turn?" Lee questions.

"Take the next left." Abicus phone says.

"If the worst happens we can always go to the town that's apparently 4 miles away for directions," Abicus says matter of fact.

"Take the next right then you have reached your destination." Abicus phone says. he takes it and the first thing we all see is the huge white mansion, that was behind a wheat field that looked like it was due to be harvested soon.

“it's not what I expected,” I say slightly amazed by the sight in front of me, I didn't know what I was expecting. a modest little home? none of that said, Libby. but nor did the huge mansion.

“Free spirits rich,” Lee says looking at the home himself in shock. The huge aches of land behind the house, was a thick forest, in front were fields for miles, I saw a few orchards, a few side buildings. A building that was obviously a stable and the was huge as well!

"No wonder she never seems to care if she loses things," Lee says, Abicus is silent on the matter, but I agree with Lee. I saw the car that had driven Libby away parked in the drive. in fact, I saw quite a few cars, none screamed rich, they were all eco-friendly cars. or camper type cars or offroaders. Cars that I could see Libby having really.

"Do you think they are throwing a party?" I ask looking at all the cars as we drive up the huge drive. When we reached the house I saw it wasn't as looked after as I originally thought, it looked like it could do with a bit of work. It's her parent's place, not hers, I remembered she wouldn’t have brought this place herself. we all just sat in the car staring up at the huge threatening building.

"Changed your mind?" Abicus asks me like he's torn himself.

"No.," I say, because I haven't, I need to see Libby.

“Do we go knock?” Lee asks I nod deciding right then, it was now or never. I climb out the back of the jeep and walk towards the door. Lee and Abicus were quick into action and next to me before I could take more than a few steps. I walk up to the front door, I took a deep breath trying to use the air around me to calm myself down. Being an air Amaris, air should calm me. but right now it was no help.

I knock.

Nothing happens.

I wait a while because I assure myself it's a huge place and with all these cars it might be noisy in there. but there is no doorbell. after a while, I knock again.

“Maybe they’ve all gone out,” Lee suggests.

"All the people in those cars?" Abicus asks.

"Maybe all the cars belong to just a few people and they've taken there other cars?" Lee suggests.

"Really they have more cars? the vegan that Liberty is?" Abicus says firmly.

"Maybe," I say worried, but that's when the door is opened. the door frame was empty.

“the doors unlocked and open you can just let yourself in.” a little voice says, that's when we all look down. The little girl had to be about 6-7 she was missing her two front teeth, she was all tight brown curls in a little red sundress and a bright yellow cardigan, she had a plastic crown on her head and fake fairy wings. Next to her stood an even smaller child, her hair in brown ringlets as well. She was in full fairy dress up, I recognized it as a tinker bell costume. “Who you?” we were asked by the smaller child who was sucking her thumb. she must have been about 3/4.

“Are your parents home?” Lee asks hopefully, unsure on himself right then.

“nope.” the older one tells us.

“Any adults?” Lee asks hopefully. giving me a look like anything but little kids.

“Millions.” The little thumb sucker told us.

“Can we talk to an adult?” Lee asks hopefully.

“I don’t know.” We are told by the little one.

“why not?” Abicus asks interestedly.

“Whats an adult?” We were asked by the smaller one. Abicus cracked up.

"Definitely Libbys home." He chuckles.

“giggle Lillie's.” The girls say looking at each other as if that makes the most sense in the world to them.

“Can we talk to anyone older than you two?” Lee asks hopefully.

“sure come in.” little thumb sucker says stepping back to let us in.

The three of us walk into the huge mansion. It wasn’t what I expected. I knew that the moment I got in there. All along the wall was pidgeon holes full of letters with names on. Hundreds of them. Rooms went off here there and everywhere. it was like a maze and we had only just gone through the first door.

“Where are all the big people?” Lee asks the little girls.

“I don’t know.” the older girls says.

"Do you think we can find people in here?" we are asked. I have the feeling it's a no.

“Iris, Isle.” a mans voice yells from somewhere in the house, that hits home, it hurts.

"Oh, which one of you is Iris?" I ask weakly, trying not to let her name affect me.

"Me." the youngest one says. I look at her, I knew one day I would meet another person with my daughter's name but I was not ready for it to be today.

"Please don't cry, we will find a big people," she tells me.

“where have those mischiefs got to.” a male's voice says getting closer, he sounds tired.

“Look after the kids whilst we get ready for the party. they aren’t to much trouble,” he says sarcastically.

"Come on its only Iris and Isle, it's not all the kids." He says.

"we could give you all the kids, yeah yeah. maybe then I wouldn't have lost them. maybe that's the secret, the more kids the harder to lose." He is saying. The girls are both looking at each other with grins on there faces.

“Let's play hide and seek Uncle Fox,” he says.

“Yeah, and where the hell has the evil spawn hid,” he says. Lee and Abicus are both trying not to laugh, he is getting closer at least. The girls giggle Iris pulls my sleeve,

“We gave up hiding 3 hours ago. We just keep walking about.” Isle tells us.

That’s when a man turned the corner in the house. He looked straight at us and his eyes went wide and what I could only describe as fear crossed his face. I suppose we were strangers in his home. a home I took by the state of the hallway and location didn't get many visitors.

“Girls.” the Guy says loudly looking frightened, but like he was facing a wild animal.

“Sorry to trespass the little ones let us in,” I say what comes to my head, it might be the wrong thing. it might be the right.

“girls get away from them.” The man says firmly. come on really do we look like we hurt children?

alright, both Lee and Abicus are 6 foot 2 and 6 foot 4 of pure muscle but they both would never hurt a child or an innocent! even for blood children are a no! Both girls run to the man though.

“Why are you here?” The man asks when the girls are away from us, so much distrust in his voice.

“I am looking for Liberty Smith. I have a birthday present for her.” I say, hell what else can I do? I hold up the wrapped present to show him. He looks like he wants to run. He seems rather flighty. I suppose for all he knows I broke an entry.

“Liberty Isn’t here currently. You can put it in her mail slot.” He says I wanted to give it to her.

“do you know when she's due home?" I ask. maybe I could just wait outside for her. I had wanted to give it to her. to see her, to hold her.

“Today's her birthday.” The youngest says with a grin.

“I know 21 she's going to be old,” I say to the small child, she gives me a little grin that's adorable.

"Hardly 21s still a baby,” she tells me with a smile.

“She's due home today, if she comes home,” Isle says a smaller smile than the other girl, but still smiling at me. if she comes home?

“Oh okay,” I say curious if Libby's not here where is she? where has she been?

“where has she been?” I ask them both.

“College.” They both say, wait she hasn't been home from college? has Libby been missing for these few weeks? Where the hell is she?

“Do you want me to give Liberty the present or wait until she comes collects her mail?” the man asks me as if any other option isn't up for debate.

“which ones her mail?” I ask weakly, I just need to buy myself time to work out what's happening here.

“Liberty Smith?” he asks me.

“Yeah,” I say. he takes a deep breath and looks around torn.

“this way, hers is in the other room, I know where hers is," Iris tells me.

“girls go play.” the guy says worriedly. that's all the little girls need though, they run off down a corridor going the opposite way to the way Iris had pointed.

“Big house to lose them in,” I say with a weak smile at him, not sure what I am going to do when I find Libby's mail slot, I have no idea what this place is. but it's not normal. I know that. Lee and Abicus looking around suspicious is not filling me with relief.

“I am aware.” the man says with distrust, I take in his own outfit. he's wearing jeans and a fleece shirt undone with a white tank underneath it.

“What is this place?” I ask interested as he leads us through rooms fall of pigeon holes a lot of them fall of mail, most of them cobwebs and mail. he ignores my question.

“do you live here?” I ask in the next room, the same.

“no one lives here,” he says seriously.

“what?” I ask interested and confused? was this not Libby's home?

“it’s the post office, shop, and school,” he tells us like he thought I was thick for not knowing this.

“So this isn’t Libby's home?” I ask him. He looked guilty like he might have given a secret away.

“You're not one of her brothers?” I ask him. He pulled a face.

“no, I have enough siblings thankyou. I don’t need more,” he tells me. He walked us through 4 more rooms.

“this is the S room,” he says looking around the room for the right one.

“What was the first name again?” he asks me. I looked at the hundreds of mail slots around, most still full.

“Liberty,” I say. The girls knew it was her birthday surely he knows who she is. He looked around.

“oh there.” He says pointing at one, I walk over to it.

“it's against the law to touch someone else's mail, even if you plan to take it to them,” he tells me. really because the people here seem to get there mail? Libbys alone was overflowing, I saw letters from her college, I pull out two of my letters of her pile. She hadn’t read them. I wasn’t sure if that made this worse or better.

“Are you what?” he asked me, his head on his shoulders looking confused.

“what do you mean am I what?” I ask his sentence making no sense to me just then.

“Your not human are you.” He said looking at me like I was dangerous. I admit all three of us spun to that. The man wasn’t looking like he was a threat. Come on he was 5 foot something he wouldn’t put up much of a fight against us. alright, I knew size didn’t equal power. But my two were trained.

“What do you mean?” I ask trying not to overreact.

“your not a Fliteren, like I thought.” He says looking at me, what the hell was a Fliteren?

“is that what you are?” I ask suspiciously as hell. Libby might not be human. I thought she was a halfling when I first met her. maybe I was right?

“Your Amaris.” The man said his eyes wide fear obvious on his face.

“We aren’t going to hurt you or be a threat. I just want to give Libby a present,” I say quickly trying to defuse any problems before anything bad happens. I would rather settle this calmly by talking, then an attack of them thinking they are protecting themselves from a threat.

“Why?” he asked. I felt weird sleepy like my body was all going to sleep and turning off, the first time I was really aware of it was when my eyes felt heavy.

“LET THEM GO FOX.” A firm female's voice said. I turned and for a moment I thought it was her. I thought it was Liberty. But after a few blinks of my sleep filled eyes, I realized it was Destiny.

“They broke in,” Fox says to her.

“no they didn’t Isle has already informed me she let them in as they knocked,” Destiny says.

“You may leave,” Destiny said firmly.

“Princess,” Fox said so worriedly, what the fucking hell is going on?

“no I mean it, they are here to see me. I will escort my guests out.” Destiny says firmly.

“As you wish, Princess." Fox mumbles. I look at Destiny trying to make sense of this moment. what the fuck was this! Lee and Abicus gave me a look like what the hell have we walked into, both looked ready to attack. I looked behind Destiny and I saw 15 other adults, all in different types of outfits and undress. A man stood at the front, I could see the worry on his face, but it wasn't fear. He didn’t think we were a threat. but he was watching Destiny like he was worried about something.

“I came to give Libby a present,” I say not sure why, but it seems the most casual thing to say right now, rather than what the fuck!

“correct me if I'm wrong Patrick, but Libby informed you not to come until the end of summer after she sends you a letter confirming you could visit did she not?” Destiny asks me.

“She did, but I was close by I didn’t see the harm in dropping off a present,” I say, that and I had wanted to see Libby. One of the girls I knew as one of Libby's friends walked forward. She looked worried.

“I told you, Destiny, we should have answered Libs mail.” the girl says, Aimee, wasn't it?

“Where is Liberty?” I ask.

“Shes.” Destiny starts but then she stops and looks annoyed.

“Fuck sake,” Destiny says after a while.

“Todays her birthday shes preparing to grow up," Destiny says looking annoyed.

“What are you?” I ask, it might be a rude question but I have a suspicion they aren't halflings right this moment, which means whatever they are isn't human or Amaris. Destiny looked really annoyed but then she closes her eyes. she doesn't say a word for a moment, but no one moves. as if everyone's waiting on her word.

“fucking Fox. Fucking Libby.” Destiny mumbles. The tall man then, who had been staring at Destiny then stepped forward, I took him in. he was just wearing jeans his bare chest tanned and well defined, he looked like someone who lived a manual life outside, still very young, he was over 6 foot tall, his long black hair was tied in a ponytail.

“Destiny,” he says to her, there's a firmness in his voice, he puts his arm around her shoulder, I see Destiny's reaction its torn like part of her wants to push him off her.

“Just tell the truth its time we build the bridge between our kinds.” the man says firmly.

“nope absolutely not,” Destiny says firmly.

“It's my say, not your own Destiny.” He tells her, he lets go of her and takes a few steps closer to me and my guards. he doesn't seem to have a care in the world.

“Hello,” he says with a smile. what! he holds his hand out to me in a handshake.

“its been over 2000 years since our kinds last talked officially. Your kind pissed off a lot of people.” the man says still holding his hand out.

“My name is Eban Dean,” he says still holding his hand out, he looks at his hand as if a challenge in itself. I took it then and shake it.

“Patrick,” I tell him, I have no clue what is happening but by the smile on his face, I feel like I've just passed a test.

“nice to meet you Patrick, sorry about the unusualness of your arrival. We weren’t expecting guests of your kind.” He tells me. of my kind?

“Alright what are you?” I ask not wanting to play a game of hiding the obvious right now!

“Oh I am half human half elf,” he tells me with a smile as if it's obvious! No, it's not obvious! hell, he's tall!

“Elf?” Lee asked in disbelief. finally, the two of them actually finding there voices then! I needed to get my head around this.

“Libby isn’t human,” I say realization that the whole time I've known Libby she has been lying to me.

"She half human, she told Abicus that much. she just let him assume she was half Amaris." Eban says deadly calm. I look at Abicus for confirmation, he just nods at me. "she didn't exactly say she was a halfling she did let me assume she was one though." Abicus says.

"could have told me." I snap at him.

"wouldn't have changed how you felt about her," Abicus says. I know he has a point, even right now I want to see Libby. to talk to her about this! not hear it from others! was she hiding from me?

“shes half human.” The man said again, letting that sink in more.

“The other half?” I question, will it actually change how I feel about her?

“Fairie,” Destiny said looking worried.

“where is she?” I ask I want these answers from her!

“She's finding herself,” Destiny says as if it's obvious where her sister is.

“shes due back today if you were a few days later.” Destiny mumbles sounding annoyed at me for my timing.

“your kind is not meant to know about us.” she moans like this is all my fault!

“why is that, surely we should all stick together,” I question, how long have other species on this planet been hiding from us?

“we tried that with your kind before. Your kind let everyone down.” Destiny snaps at me like it's my personal fault.

“When was this?” I question, why would we have known about them and not now?

“over 2000 years ago.” The man Eban said calmly.

“come on that was hundreds of years before we were all born, whats to say your families aren’t just telling you bad stories,” I say trying to come to my kinds defense.

“the fact that our kind is truly immortal and most have been alive longer than that,” Destiny says firmly. Wait what? Would that mean Libby and my relationship could last longer than a few years? Would I not have to worry about losing her? would it be the other way, she would lose me?

“Libby is only half Fae her lifespan in 400-1000 years. Yes its likely that Liberty will live longer than you if she returns.” Eban says deadly serious as if he knows what I'm thinking. I blinked was he a mind reader? Was that even a thing? until then I would have said no, but my whole world of what I knew had just taken a big tumble.

“Yes I'm a mind reader but its rude of me to read your mind without permission. I apologize,” he tells me.

“So let me get this straight. Elves and fairies are real?” Abicus says the first thing he's said in a while.

“yes exactly,” Eban says like he's explaining something as simple as the weather outside today not changing the world as we knew it.

“next you'll be telling us mermaids are too.” Abicus mumbles.

“yes very, but they try not to get involved in land matters. They are rather self-absorbed.” Destiny says.

"Hey." one on the group says, I look at it, its Immy I think from the college.

“rather like your kind,” Destiny says ignoring the Hey.

“No offense.” Immy I think it was says.

“some taken,” Abicus says.

“Was Libby ever going to tell me she wasn’t human?” I question slightly peed off.

"Yes, actually she was," Destiny says.

"She's been trying to for weeks Patrick, she kept getting interrupted," Abicus says. I glare at him, he's not exactly innocent in keeping secrets currently!

“She said she trusts you," Immy says to me.

“Libby trusts you, she loves you,” Eban says to me.

“You're not telling him to stay away from her?” Lee questions, which I admit is weird, my own kind would tell me to stay away from Libby.

“why would I do that, if someones meant to be together. They should be together. Why stop someone being who they are?” Eban tells us.

“your kind have too many laws,” Eban informs us like he really doesn't understand it.

“What are your laws?” I ask, what kind of world does Libby live in?

“No one can open someone else's mail,” Aimee says pointing at the pigeonholes.

“we should have broken that one,” she mumbles.

“If someone sees us use our magic their minds must be wiped if they are a threat. But only if they are a threat.” Destiny says seriously.

“We can't interfere with peoples free wills,” Destiny says seriously.

“There is a current one that’s in the works that shoes must be worn in the outside world,” Eban says trying not to laugh, I look at all there bare feet including his own.

“Vote no for shoes,” Destiny says pointing at a sign on the wall that actually has a picture of a shoe with a cross through it. she has a smile as if the mere thought of that law is laughable.

“You have nothing about my kind?” I question

“Nope, we just avoid you like you have the plague we got fed up cleaning up your messes.” Someone says. Suddenly the sound of a horn went off. it sounded like someone with a trumpet in this very room with us.

"What was that?” I ask

“Libbys finally made it to the first marker,” Destiny said with a grin.

"Took her time didn't she," Eban says but he is smiling.

“that means what?” I question suspicious.

“she will be home by luncheon,” Destiny says with a relieved smile.

“Come or we will be late for Elevenses.” A man moans in the group moans.

“bloody Fliteren always think with his stomach,” Aimee says but she smiles at the man who said it.

“Fliteren?” I ask not sure what all these new words mean.

“Werewolf,” Eban tells me calmly. I blink, this couldn’t be real. werewolves were just myths! like Fae and Elves and us! shit!

“So let me get this right, there are loads of species around the world, you all know each other and get on. But the Amaris were cut off?” I ask needing answers. were all these species out there hiding from us?

“Yes exactly.” I was told.

“Can I ask what we did?” I ask torn as hell.

“Wars we are all peaceful races, your kind is dangerous, you almost wiped a few of us out,” Eban says he doesn't look like he's accusing me, but there's an edge to it. an edge that says not every one of them will trust us.

“Where do you think the myths of vampire and werewolf wars come from?” I am asked.

“We don’t say you can't know about us, we just ask you don’t tell everyone," Eban tells me. Destiny shuts her eyes and then groans at Eban.

“Would you like to come and wait for Liberty?” she asks me. Isn't she coming here?

“but if you do, you need to make a promise,” Destiny says firmly.

“What kind?” I ask suspiciously. I know better than to agree before I know what. learned that from Sandy.

“that you won't ever hurt Libby,” Destiny says firmly.

“I assure you I won't,” I say not even having to think about it. she nods taking my words for a promise.

“Come then, but please keep in mind. Libby may be exhausted. She may have changed.” Destiny says worried as hell. something else was up that I didn't know yet?

“What does that mean?” I question

“she’s been in the forest alone for over 5 weeks now.” Destiny tells me. WHAT!

“Alone?” I question! I knew she was training for something! how dangerous could she get!

“yes, fully alone and with nothing but the items she was allowed to take,” Immy informs me.

“she has been on a self-discovery and sometimes what someone sees isn’t what they want to see,” Destiny says worried as hell.

“sometimes they can't cope, it changes people,” Immy says worriedly.

“You're worried?” Abicus says but he seems to be thinking about it.

“Let's just say Libby wasn’t the easiest to see passing her test,” Destiny admits

“Why not?” I ask worried, I couldn't help but imagine Libby scared and alone and cold in the forest all alone at night. the mere thought scared me. but all the training now made sense.

“She’s just worried, Libby is her baby sister and the tests are extremely hard. a few of there elder siblings didn’t come back from there testings.” Eban informs me.

“Come or we will miss elevenses at this rate and have to wait for luncheon to eat,” Eban says.

“How many meals a day do you have?” Lee asks I think for something to ask as everyone seems to start making moves down the corridor.

“7 of course.” He says like this is completely normal.

“Surely you’ve seen Libby eat 7 meals a day,” Eban questions me. like he wonders how I missed that. Actually, I have seen Libby eat no meals a day until the evening when I finally remember she hasn't eaten. All 3 of the girls looked away trying not to laugh or catch my eyes.

“You haven’t been eating 7 meals a day?” Eban asks them in disbelief.

“Of course we have,” Destiny says looking away from him a huge smile on her lips.

“Just mostly in one hit and acholic,” she mumbles under her breath and walks away from him out the room. Eban looks at me and shakes his head as if in disbelief.

“Woman.” He mumbles

“So how does your species work royals or?” I asked interestedly. following him through the maze that this building was, I took it we were going towards a different exit. I had heard them call Destiny Princess, hadn't I?

“The elves have the king Eugene the fairy's the queen Daysi. Daysi and Eugene have a difficult relationship.” Eban informs me.

“because he left her at the altar,” I say realizing I already know that part.

“ah, you’ve heard the story. I don’t understand it really myself it was centurys ago.” Eban says, but with a shit stirring grin on his face, I knew he was playing. and was obviously waiting on someone to bite. it didn't take long.

“He left her at the altar.” 6 females yelled at him like he was an idiot.

“he didn’t leave her he was late,” Eban says with a grin, as this was a long old argument.

“by 200 years!” Destiny snapped at him, turning around to face us just so she could glare at him.

“He got distracted,” Eban says to me.

“Sorry, Eban but I see the Queen's side in this,” I tell him truthfully.

“Everyone does but Eugene did have a reason,” Eban says he sounds serious as if it's important that I know that.

We were walked out of the house, through an open patio door. I still held Libby's present. Another horn went off.

“What does that mean?” I ask

“Libby has made it to the second checkpoint, she has sped up,” Destiny says with a grin.

“That means?” I start hopefully that Libby would just appear then.

“she only has one more checkpoint till she's back home and safe. Shell be given elevenses in a chamber and insisted to have a wash, then dress then join everyone for luncheon and then two days of celebration for her birthday.” Destiny says with a grin.

“I will see you later,” Immy says with a grin.

“Where is she going?” I ask.

“to go help Libby get ready,” Immy tells me.

“will you be telling her I'm here?” I ask her not sure what I want to happen right now.

“no, I will not be," Immy informs me.

“why not?” I ask but she runs off, before answering.

“Why not?” I ask Eban he was the most chatty.

“there is a tradition.” He said with a slightly smug smile.

“Like what?” I ask

“Everyone please go prepare the horses, if we want to get there for elevensies,” Eban says.

Destiny rolls her eyes. “we all know the bloody saying.” She moans.

“fine,” Eban says looking disappointed, that his fun was ruined.

“the saying is the first person a new fairy lays eyes on when they come out for there reveal will be the person they dedicate there lives too,” Eban tells me.

“it’s a rumor and myth not real.” Destiny snaps

“shes only saying that because I was the first person she looked at.” Eban tells me with a smirk. With how he constantly watched her, how he seemed to be aware of her every movement.

“She just hasn’t accepted it yet,” Eban tells me looking at her with a look I may give Libby.

“but basically if she sees you in the ground instantly without knowing your there and looks at you in the eyes first.” He starts.

“it will mean you will be a lot more trusted by the Fae,” he tells me.

“your not Fae though so you trust me?” I ask.

“I'm not Fae and I'm a mind reader. I trust you, the others will take a while. they have a right to fear your kind.” he says truthfully.

“So do all elves read minds?” I ask

“hell no it’s a very complicated gift and is not my only.” Eban informs me.

“I am the earth spirit.” He says looking at me like its an important information he's given me and he's going to judge me by my reaction. The earth spirit not an earth spirit? The wording of that confused me.

“you are connected to the Air aren’t you Amaris?” he asks me interested.

“yes,” I say he nods.

“which explains Destiny's reaction to you. Shes earth and grounded,” he tells me.

“Libby?” I ask

“Who knows yet, she will of only have discovered herself currently.” He says with a playful smile.

“But I have a feeling,” he says giving me a playful look like he knows more than he's saying.

“that she’s air.” He tells me. My little free spirit.

“the tattoos on the girls?” I start I had seen a few of the others in the group had the tattoos.

“The Fae often have tattoos when they come back. they don't have to show them, but in there home they are safe to be themselves so often do. they often hide them when they leave though” he tells me.

“Elves don’t. it is the main way we can tell a fairy from an elf on sight. Although elves are normally taller.” he tells me.

“Fae and Elves aren’t the same?” Lee asks interestedly.

“no, but we have a lot of children that are both. We almost became one species once, but then we all started branching off again. A child of both the fairies and elves are simply referred to as Fae rather than Elves. The fairies use Fae though as well and we call the half children of Fairys and Elves Fae. The half children of elves and humans are simply referred to as elves. But occasionally they will claim their human side. We don’t think a child born of a human and old world is any less than a child born of both. Its who the person is that defines them.” Eban tells us all.

“Something your kind seemed to forget with the halflings. But if I remember rightly, it was how your gene pool extended to its population it is now, or you'd be all inbred wouldn’t you.” Eban tells us. Abicus actually laughs, he seems to be taking this all in his stride.

“It was a debate we are currently having a lot with the mer as they want to make it against the law to be with a human like you did,” Eban tells me.

“only because the king's brother was killed by a human,” Destiny says seriously.

“yes well they are getting a slightly bit inbred now, and they need to watch it as it’s the quickest way to go extinct. Think of the giants. think of your own kind and how close you all got” Eban says seriously.

“there's really giants?” Abicus asks interestedly.

“yes but they will be extinct in about 70-80 years if they don’t get there heads out of there asses.” we are informed.

We arrive at the stables and I admit it takes me a while to take it in. Unicorns and Pegasus were in there with normal horses.

“Wow,” I say in disbelief.

"This can't be real," Abicus says in shock himself.

“They are your pets?” Lee asks in disbelief.

“hell no, they are free. This is one of there many homes. We just need to ask if we can have a ride.” Aimee says, going up to a white pegasus who watched me with eyes the darkest of blues. she strokes the pegasus. The pegasus snorted.

“Sorry, she won't let us ride,” Aimee informs me.

“oh?” I ask not sure what else to do or say.

“its fine the only people she normally let's ride her is Art, Faith, and Liberty. I just thought she might let you ride, but she says you’ve possibly never even been on a horse before let alone one that fly’s.” Aimee says, stroking the pegasus.

“well, it has been over 140 years since I was last on a horse,” I admit

“OMG, how old are you,” Destiny asks me.

“Des does age matter your moms over 5000 years older than your dad,” Eban says.

“and the rest.” Destiny mumbles

“Chocolate will allow one of you to ride,” Aimee says stroking a brown unicorn. I look at Lee and Abicus. They both shrugged. We all climbed onto the unicorns horses and Pegasus that agreed to let us ride. A few run off ahead not taking any animal. I knew I saw two wolves run into the forest before us. this was really happening!

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