“Alex.” Lynx was crying. He was sobbing. His now skinny frame was shaking, raking in breaths. I could barely see his body wrapped in Alexander’s huge arms. They were both on the floor, clinging to each other. “Alex,” he rasped out again. “How?”
“The Guclon brought him back,” I said.
Lynx looked at me over Alexander’s shoulder. I knew he didn’t know who the Guclon were but he nodded.
I slowly backed out, giving them some privacy. “Thank you,” I told the Guclon man. He was standing right outside the door.
“Of course, Princess. It was our pleasure.”
“How many more of you are there, back on Gon?”
“One million, three hundred thousand. Come,” he said. “The planet should be fixed in an hour.”
An hour later it was fixed, just the like the Guclon said. The normal breeze on Enceladus was immediate. It was cold but it felt so good.
An hour after that, the Guclon took off. They told us that we most likely wouldn’t see them for at least one thousand more years. I still had so many questions. But they cured our home and my brothers. They were trusted in my eyes.
Later that day, I checked in on Caelum, who was with Golda in their room.
“So, the Guclon huh?” Cal said as I entered.
“I see Golda has brought you up to speed.”
“Ån, will you give us a moment?” he said to Golda, calling her his sweetheart.
She looked ready to protest but she left anyway.
I sat in the chair next to his bed after moving the tray of mostly eaten food. He must have been hungry after five months of not eating solid food. “So you heard everything.”
“I did.” His eyes were quietly assessing me, like he would do in battle.
“About my . . . father.” He nodded. “And our mother.”
“She visited you on Earth?”
“Yeah and warned me about Amara. Only a few days before Delphinus came to get Lainie and I.”
I was shocked he asked. “Yeah but I told you about what I did to her.”
He sighed. “Amy, I don’t think you’re a monster.”
Something in our rough brother-sister relationship melted away. “Really? Why? I’ve killed so many innocent people. And not so innocent people. Like Drea.”
He laughed. “Rightfully so. She stuck a blade in my chest.”
“You know, I went dark after I saw that. Guess I do care about you,” I joked.
Cal didn’t take it as a joke. “I love you too, Amelia.” He grabbed my hand.
With my other hand, I wiped away traitorous tears. I was one-hundred percent positive that Cal had never once said that to me. How sad was that? “Even after all the things I told you?”
“Yes.” He took his hand from mine. “So, you and Talia. Fëŵås.” The moment was gone.
“Caelum!” I pushed his shoulder. He said what two people who are intimate do in the most vulgar term. “Yes we are dating.”
He knew more about me than Talia did. It made me feel bad. “So the planet is fixed by our creators. An ancient alien race took humans, our ancestors, and turned them into Enceladians. Guess I’ve been too harsh on humans.”
That was an understatement. When he met Lainie last year he had barely looked at her. “I’m glad you’re back.”
“That’s enough pouring our feelings out for one—or ten—years.”
I laughed and left his room.
I went one over to Lynx’s and knocked. He yelled to come in so I did.
What I saw made me so happy. Lynx was wrapped in Alexander’s arms on his blanket-less mattress. Lynx’s face was the most content I had ever seen it. When Alexander saw me, he got off of the bed and stood ceremoniously.
“Hey,” Lynx protested. “Come back.”
“I am a palace guard.”
I laughed. “Alexander, you just came back from the dead. I’d say that warrants a break.”
“I don’t want you to be a guard anymore,” Lynx whined. His personality was intact. Already. “I want you all to myself.”
I looked down at my booted feet, wondering if I should give them some privacy.
“How would I live if I have no income?”
I turned my body to the bathroom so I wasn’t looking directly at them
“You would have i if you married a royal.”
My jaw dropped and I whipped back to the two.
“Marry me, Alex.”
“What?” Alexander said.
“Oh, fine,” Lynx grumbled. “I always thought I’d be the one being proposed to.” He got out of bed and onto both knees. He took Alex’s hand.
This was really happening.
“Alexander Caverly, will you do me the extraordinary honor of marrying me?”
I was tearing up.
“Yes.” I never thought Alexander was one for crying but sure enough he was. “Yes. Yes.”
Lynx got up and they kissed. “Sorry I don’t have a ring. Up until a few hours ago I thought you were dead . . .”
Alex silenced him with another kiss.
I couldn’t keep it in any longer. “Oh my god, you guys! You’re engaged!” I gathered them in a group hug right before the door swung open. It was Jaeel and the face he made when he saw his older brother was one of a kind.
I knew in that moment that we would be very happy.
I didn’t see my father in the weeks that followed. I had been busy. We were settling back in to Enceladus after having everything packed up. And I was so happy, I didn’t notice his absence. Until he visited again on November twenty-fifth.
“I assume you’re not going to summon me since your brothers are well and your planet is safe?” he asked.
I wasn’t close to going dark this time so I didn’t know what brought him. “No. For the record, I was never going to.” Last time he had told me how to bring him to my realm. It involved killing people so . . . no. Of course, that wasn’t the only reason I had said no.
“Pity. I was hoping you would sooner rather than later. But I can wait.”
“You’ll be waiting a very long time then.”
He smiled like he knew something I didn’t. “We will rule the world together, Stacia.”
“Fat chance,” I snorted and pulled myself out of his realm.
I was in my bathroom, getting out of the shower. It was a good thing he hadn’t made me naked when he visited. He told me he was able to control the visits, which was how he showed me Hell and my throne.
“Amelia,” I heard Talia call through the bathroom door. We had been spending every night together. “Prince Lynx needs your help with wedding plans.”
I smiled. “I’ll be right out!” Lynx and Alexander had already set a date. Their wedding was going to be in January. Alexander had only been alive for two weeks and they had already started planning the wedding.
I came out of the room with a towel on. Talia was right there, running her hands all over me. “Hi,” I murmured against her mouth.
“Hi,” she whispered back.
I got dressed and we headed to the dining where Lynx was planning. On the long table were papers, announcements and samples of food. Alex, Cassiopeia, John, Delphinus, Caelum and Golda were there too. It seemed like Cal had been forced to attend.
“I want everyone’s approval on everything. Amy’s especially,” Lynx said.
It brought me immense joy to see my brother okay again. He thanked me for helping him through his “rough patch”, he’d called it.
Alexander was standing behind Lynx’s chair like a guard would. Not like he was betrothed to a royal. Even Golda had settled in as a royal’s fiancée. Speaking of Golda, her and Caelum’s wedding date was at the end of next year. Lynx wanted to hurry up and be married. Golda and Cal had postponed theirs when Cal was in a coma and then decided to push it back a few more months.
Soon Delphinus and I would be the only ones of our siblings not married. It made me glance nervously at Talia. She responded with a grin. Did I see a future with her?
I looked around the table at my siblings, at my family. Del rubbed her belly lovingly. Cass’ head was resting on John’s shoulder. Alexander had his hands on Lynx’s shoulders. Caelum draped an arm around Golda. And I was holding Talia’s hand. I knew I had never known such joy in my entire life. They were all safe and happy. And together.
I glanced at Talia again. I knew my answer was yes.