FOREVER KNIGHTS: #14 Broken Birds

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Goodbye, My Love

“Calisto.” She uttered in annoyance.

“You’re truly going to make him grieve alone?”

“I’ve been grieving alone!”

“By your choice!” Calisto snapped. “I’ve watched him pacing outside your door. You’ve heard him. He’s tried to hold you, comfort you, on countless occasions.”

“I don’t want him to touch me!”

“How long do you intend to hate him?” Calisto said chidingly. Following Elsabet as she chose a direction.

“It’s his fault. So, an eternity.” Elsabet snapped. Pushing low, rubbery, branches up enough she could duck under them.

Calisto merely passed through them. Her shoulders and neck vanishing as the branches seemed to cut through her. Then reappearing before the branch afterward. Calisto shook her head disgustedly. “I’m ashamed to call you friend!”

“Then don’t.” Elsabet snapped. “I’m free. I’ve escaped him. That’s all that matters.”

“Do you think after all this time he’d give you a tool to your freedom by accident?”

Elsabet’s eyes narrowed on the ghostly outline of the black-haired woman. Lips tight.

“You know I’m right! He even told you how to use it to escape! I heard him.” Still shaking her head Calisto started to vanish.

“Calis.” Elsabet called.

Making Calisto’s image darken as she returned. Condemning blue gaze returning to Elsabet.

Elsabet swept up Calisto’s hand. Making it harden into nearly real flesh. Elsabet slapped the orb into it.

“Free yourself. Come back here.” Elsabet pointed to where they stood. “To this plane.”

“Then you can go comfort him.” She gestured to the castle.

Calisto’s eyes flew from the orb to Elsabet’s face. “There’s no bitterness in your voice. No jealousy. You truly are worried for him.”

Elsabet’s eyes filled with fluid but her face was unmoving.

“Oh, My Friend…” Calisto nodded slowly. “I understand.” And she vanished like a flame burning out.

Elsabet paused, staring at the spot where the woman had been before slowly turning back toward WaterRose to murmur. “Goodbye, My Love.”

“Goodbye, My Love.” Sebastian said from the room of the damp tower. Unbeknownst to him, saying the words the same moment she did, so far below. Where he couldn’t hear her.

He felt her energy leaving WaterRose and emerging near Phalanx Forest. Where I lost the telepathic connection with her.

Craving one last look at her he’d hurried up the tower steps to enter the highest parapet to see her. He watched her look back at WaterRose for the last time before giving it her back to wind into the trees.

Farewell, Elsabet. His face fell to his open palms. He turned his back to the stone wall, away from the window. No longer able to bear looking at the spot where she’d disappeared into the trees.

Where she left me. He raked his nails down his face in his pain and grief. Sliding his back down the wet stone wall.

“Ah!” He roared in his agony. Shaking the walls of WaterRose as his anguish echoed through the tower and reverberated through every hall. Feeling the stronghold with his pain.

The stronghold I built centuries ago to protect the Fallen from the outside world. For my Captain. The castle that’s become my home. My realm.

But now I’ve released the only true queen it’ll ever have. Bast was so absorbed in the emotions pouring over him, he failed to hear the huffing of the wolves that’d wandered from their chambers at the sound of his agonized cry.

Now they wandered the corridors aimlessly. Sensing something terrible had just occurred. Their heads upturned toward where the top tower loomed above them. Uncertain what they could do to help. But knowing they’d never heard such a sound from the King of the Castle of Water before.

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