Valkyrie III: Song of Darkness, The Novel Edition

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Chapter Sixty-One

For a moment, Malice lay there with her lover, if only to bask in her presence. From the second they had met the Valkyrie had felt a connection. One that had never been as strong as it was in the moment they now shared.
“Marena, you cannot go back to that madman. He will kill you.” Malice sighed, opening up just a little to share the fear she held deep inside.
Closing her eyes she leaned in and let her forehead rest against Marena’s. She knew in her heart she wouldn’t come, but she’d had to try. There was really, only one way this would end. Malice would find freedom, and then return for her love, with or without her sister’s help.
“I swear upon the blood of my mother, who apparently is still alive, that I will find you, where ever you are.” Malice conjured a woven ring, speaking words Marena could not understand into it, before slipping on her finger. “Even though everything will stand between us, I will find you.”
When Malice finished speaking there was a small pulse of energy that surprised Marena. It crept up her arm and spread across her chest, the warmth of a thousand suns covering her.
“What was that?”
“It was the oath taking hold. It will follow you, keeping you safe, until the day comes where I release it.” Malice smiled, and Marena wrapped her arms around her lover fiercely as her tears began to fall.
She could barely stand the sight of her in pain. In all of her time as a prisoner, she’d never seen the Valkyrie cry. The dark-haired female stroked her lover’s bright hair until the tears subsided and Malice suddenly chuckled.
“One day I’m going to have to make it up to Loki.” Malice thought about it for a second before speaking again. “No, I won’t.” She sighed, which made Marena giggle.
Malice started growling softly as she kissed Marena’s neck and ears. There were so many other important things to do, but she couldn’t pull herself away…

***

That ring meant more to Malice than anything. A matched set, created deep within Loki’s forge and cursed to all but the ones who wore them. The Valkyrie had just given Marena the means to keep Pathen at bay, but for how long?
“I must go, my love!” Marena whimpered, feeling Pathen’s call as To’llan began to awaken within her.
“I don’t want to leave you...”
“You have your army. You have a way out, Malice, so go find your sister and set things right. I will do what I can to keep him occupied!”
Malice frowned at those words. They had once been a trio. An unstoppable force, but Pathen had shown his true colors time and again and with the tides of war changing, there was no telling when they’d get another chance. Marena had to go and keep all eyes off Malice until after she took Misthaven; not just Pathen’s. It was going to be hard enough to convince Marwolaeth to not destroy everything in her path, worrying about Marena with that slimy, arrogant bastard...
“You will, be safe, or by the Gods, Marena, the Shadowlands will be nothing more than dust floating through space.”
“Always so cocky!” Marena grinned, kissing her one last time, and with the ring nestled in her corset beside her heart, she vanished.
“I will kill that bastard!” Malice growled, alone in the luxury of Babylon and yet it had lost all glory. “PEIPER?” She hollered as she returned to the battlefield, knowing the male was never far from her side, and reached for a flask of ale. “Where is my sword?”

***

After a dream like that, it was no wonder her head ached and the world spun as she opened her eyes. Malice, and Marena. A giant, multicolored and rather secretive feline, and Loki. Oh, was he ever dreamy with his dark, shoulder length hair and that gaze that made your knees wobble; but then, the cocky, shameless, annoying... She could on. The male was an asshole and they didn’t call him the trickster for nothing.
But, oh he did smell good. All that leather mixing with his scent, she could still smell him, even now. A rich, earthy mix that he tried to cover with the fresh woodland aroma of the outdoors. A special blend that....
Fuck, Malice had made it for him. She’d done a lot for him, and he for her, but no matter what they’d set out to do, the trouble that followed them around was beyond crazy. She was just as smitten with him, though. She envied his free-will most of all. Loki didn’t care, and that was the problem. It was even worse when he did care. The asshole was so unpredictable, and gorgeous...
She inhaled deep, taking in the fragrance about her. It was amazing how her mind could remember some things, like his scent, but it couldn’t remember how much Mist owed her in Hida’chi. Go figure, she groaned as she rolled over.
“What the hell?” She let out as her arm brushed up against something warm and her groin was answered in kind.
“Oh Gods!” She whispered, her heart racing as her mind worked out the details.
Where was she? No fucking clue.
How did she get here? Nope, that was blank too.
Who, or what, lay next to her? Last thing she remembered was watching Malice getting all hot and heavy with Loki, then she felt like she was floating. There was no party. No male to bring home, or wherever she was.
“Alb...” His voice broke the silence and caused Belvaya to gasp and shoot up in... shit, she was in a bed.
Dark, silk sheets covered her, which she promptly tossed back to reveal that she was in fact, still clothed. “Thank the Gods!” She muttered.
“What the...?” She heard his voice again, though this time she could hear every word that followed. “What the hell? Who are you?” He growled, jumping from the bed.
He didn’t remember her? Clearly now, as he stood with his hands covering his naked body. Fuck, if she thought he was gorgeous before, just, wow.
“How did you get in here?”
“Listen, buddy, I woke up here? Why don’t you tell me how I got here?” She spat back at him, rising from the bed fully clothed.
“Albrecht?” He shouted again and grabbed a pillow to help cover himself. “You, shouldn’t be here!”
“I gathered that!” She replied, finding her jacket laying across a chair nearby. “So now, I’m going to leave!”
“Whoa, whoa, whoa! You don’t get to break into my personal quarters and then just leave.” He grumbled, attempting to find some pants. “Albrecht?”
“What?” Came another voice. “Quit all that shouting, I’m not deaf!”
“Are you blind? Or do you see this?” Loki choked out.
“Looks like you finally had some fun!” The Dwarf chuckled and Belvaya remembered meeting him on the steps...
“Shit! I passed out, didn’t I?” She inquired, bringing her palm to her face. “Dammit!”
“Aye, Lass!” The old Dwarf chuckled again, “But we took care of you!”
“What do you mean we? Who else thought it was a good idea to leave her in my room?”
“Uh, that would be you, my friend!” Albrecht was laughing now, and with the scowl of confusion on Loki’s face, Belvaya couldn’t help but giggle too.
“Shit!” Loki hissed. “I can’t remember...”
“She took you, Loki! Do you remember that? Malice was here!” Albrecht sighed and shook his head. “Not again!”
“What do you mean?”
“He gets these bouts of memory loss, especially when returning from a visit with Malice. Takes him a bit, but he’ll come around.”
“How about, you two finish your chat, out in the hall?” Loki frowned and threw his pillow at them.

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