At first I thought that I had just switched to a different vision. Then I noticed that Val was with me and so was Sebastian. Val was kneeling in front of me. It looked like he was trying to say something to me but I couldn’t hear what he was saying. I felt confused, disoriented, and dizzy. I swear if the world didn’t stop swirling in front of my eyes I was going to throw up. I could vaguely feel something tug on my arm. I watched Val brought his hand up near my face but I had no idea what he was doing. I felt something hit me hard on the side of the face. It took me a second to realize that Val had just slapped me. Then all of sounds hit me all at once. The screaming, the clang of metal on metal, the shwing as a sword cut through its target and Val saying that we had to leave. I touched my stinging cheek before realization hit me and I whipped my head back to look at Val with wide eyes.
I lept to my feet dragging Val with me. We were right in the middle of No-Man’s-Land, the centre of the fight. There were bodies everywhere. Some on the ground and some were lifted up from the ground as a symbol of what could happen to other people. Arrows flew over our heads, and swords as well as other weapons lay all over the ground. Making it hazardous for us to run across the open field. Val kept stumbling and had difficulty keeping up with me. We weren’t going to make it out of here in one piece at this rate.
“Sebastian, I need you to grow back to your full size.” I called out to him. I felt something move around on my head.
“Yes Mistress,” Sebastian replied before jumping off my head. He turned into pixie dust and swirled around in front of Val and I until he had reformed into his much larger self. He ran right beside us as we dodged obstacle after obstacle. He gestured with his head for us to get on. I helped Val to get on Sebastian’s back first because he had almost fallen three times in the last five minutes. Just as I was about to jump on to Sebastian’s back too something grabbed my leg. I fell to the ground and did a faceplant because I wasn’t able to catch myself fast enough.
I pushed myself up quickly and whipped my head around to see what had caught my leg. There was a black and blue hand wrapped around my ankle. The person that the hand was attached to had dead eyes but I knew that he was staring at me. In my quick examination he was missing his lower half. He should be dead by now. I lifted my other foot and brought it down hard enough times that he let go of me and I could scramble away from him. Sebastian had stopped a couple feet ahead and turned around to come back to me, but he had stopped again. I hopped onto his back.
“Take off Sebastian!” I yelled at him over all the noise. I watched him open his wings, but suddenly my vision was blurred as he took to the sky. My stomach dropped at the sudden change, but we quickly leveled out. When I looked down we must’ve been 200 feet off the ground. Well out of the range of arrows. We could see the entire battlefield from up here. Everyone looked so small. It felt almost unreal to be up in the air like this. Sebastian us away from the battlefield, away from all the chaos and destruction. I had no idea where he was taking us but I was just glad that it was away from here. The soil had been completely tainted with the blood of those who fought there out of hatred. Val loosened his grip around my waist and he seemed to relax.
“Its beautiful up here,” Val whispered in awe. I hadn’t realized how long my mind had been wandering until I looked around and noticed the change in landscape. We were flying over a beautiful forest. Just as I was about to agree with him I looked up ahead of us and saw the crumbling remainders of a castle in the distance. The baby kicked when I spotted the making me double over in pain.
“Woah are you okay?” Val asked concerned. Oh crap, I forgot that he didn’t know I was pregnant. “Yeah I’m fine,” I told him as calmly as I could, but these cramps and stuff were getting worse and worse. “Just insane cramping that’s all.”
“Hey Sebastian where are you taking us?”
“Home, to Arcadia,” Sebastian replied as he dropped about 50 feet so that he was right above the tops of the trees. Val’s grip tightened around my waist until we leveled out again. Arcadia? That was my home? That’s the place I was really from? As we got closer to the ruins I could see other buildings that were destroyed and soe that looked like they were getting rebuilt. There was also small plumes of smoke coming up from a couple different areas in the clearing where the ruins were. There was still people here? I was completely dumbfounded. How did they manage to survive? I could feel hope and pride swell in me. I was so proud of my people. But there was something nagging at me. Almost like i was forgetting someone, someone very important. Someone who was closer to me than anyone, except for Aurn.
“Val you mentioned someone named Tenzin earlier, who is that?” I asked him while I continued to stare at the ever increasing ruins.
“Well, you see, he’s my...mate… and you brother,” Val replied quickly that I almost didn’t catch what he said. I whipped my head back to where Val was sitting, eyes wide. But Val was looking at everything else except for me. So that was it. I tuned back to look at the ruins. My little brother took over for me while I was gone. He had even started rebuilding our village. I wasn’t even the slightest bit upset that they had tried to keep them being mates a secret from me, which they didn’t because I figured that out right after the first time that they had met. I guess the only person who was really keeping secrets here was me. I suddenly felt another twinge in my abdomen. This one was more painful then the last couple had been. I doubled over in pain and groaned. I suddenly felt very nauseous.
“Sebastian, do you think that you could speed up a bit please,” I told him as I put a hand over my mouth as a fruitless attempt to prevent myself from throwing up. I saw Sebastian glance back at me out of the corner of my eye.
“Yes Mistress,” Sebastian replied and I felt the rush of air go by us at a faster rate as Sebastian sped up.
“Are you sure you’re okay?” Val asked, more concerned this time than he was he last time.
“Yea really, I’ll be okay just a little motion sickness,” I lied as I fought another wave of nausea. Shit, I didn’t think that I was too far off now. Maybe another week at most and then I’d probably be ready to give birth.
“Hang on, we are heading down into the village,” Sebastian told us just before he began to dive towards the village. As soon as we landed on the ground just outside the village I felt a little bit better. I was still nauseous but at least the pain had stopped for the time being. Val and I climbed down from Sebastian’s back, and began walking towards the village. Sebastian followed us but stayed in his larger form.
For a while all we saw were burnt out and crumbling buildings. There weren’t any skeletons and for that I was thankful. There was just a whole lot of debris everywhere. Vines had started to climb up the walls and around any sort of debris that they could. There were weeds and other flowers that were poking through the cracks of the stone walkway that looked like it ran throughout the entire village. It looked like this place might’ve been beautiful at one point. It even looked like it might’ve been a very prosperous village too. I think we walked about 5 minutes more until we saw our first person. Well half person to be truly honest. This person had the upper body of a woman but the lower half of a snake. As soon as she spotted us she slithered away as fast as she could. I looked to Val but he just smiled and shrugged. So we continued walking until we came to a stone courtyard that was at the centre of at least 8 different buildings. They were all in pretty bad shape but there was evidence of a someone trying to rebuild them. In the centre of the courtyard was a busted up well.
Carefully I walked up to the well without really thinking. It looked like it might’ve been a very gorgeous and functional well. Too bad it’s been resorted to rubble. I tilted my head to the side as I looked at it. Perhaps it didn’t have to stay that way. I raised my hands and concentrated with all my might. I pulled all the rubble that was around and inside the well, up into the air. I slowly began to pile the stones on top of the still standing pieces of the original well. I heated each of the rocks so that they would fuse together with the rocks around them. I wanted to make sure that this well wasn’t going to go anywhere anytime soon. I fixed the pulley system for bringing the water up and added a roof just for fun.
I walked over to the edge of the well and looked down inside of it to see my nice handy work. But when I looked down into the well it was dry. I was a bit confused considering that I could feel the water flowing in the ground under my feet. I reached into the well and clenched my fingers into a fist rather quickly, while also concentrating on my earth abilities. I could hear and see the bottom of the well crack open. That’s when the water started to seep in, slowly at first but quickly building in pressure. Until the whole bottom of the well busted open and water flowed into it freely. I pulled out my hand and nodded at the well in approval before turning back to Val. I was surprised that he hadn’t said a word that entire time. He was usually quite the chatterbox. When I was looking in his direction, both he and Sebastian were nowhere to be seen.
“Val? Sebastian? Where are you?” I called out as panic started to grip me, but so did focus. I popped the swords out of my arms and held them at the ready. I didn’t want to be unprepared for whatever had taken Val and Sebastian and hadn’t left a trace behind. I looked around the courtyard slowly. Now that I was more focused I could feel hundreds of eyes on me. I just couldn’t tell where they were coming from. One pair of eyes felt particular close. I turned completely around and saw a young man standing between two dilapidated buildings with a sword similar to mine in his left hand. He had the exact same tattoo going up his left arm that I had. The sight of it gave me a bit of a woozy feeling, kind of like déjà vu. For a split second my vision changed. He was still standing I the same spot but there was fire around him. Val was standing next to him, practically holding him up all on his own. He was fairly wounded and couldn’t stand up straight. Then it flickered between the fiery world and the destroyed one, before setting back on on to the presently destroyed world. The only difference was that Val was actually standing beside the young man now. They were standing too close together to just be friends. Val was glancing in between the young man and me, nervously. I knew the young man from somewhere. It was on the tip of my tongue as to where I knew him from.
I watched them for another couple of seconds until Val sent some bells ringing in my brain reaching out to touch the young man’s right hand. But the young man carefully shrugged it away and gave an apologetic sideways glance to Val. Val huffed and sighed slightly annoyed. He moved a little further away from the young man and closer to me. I do believe that Val had had enough of whatever was going on. He gave one last glance back to the young man before walking the remaining distance over to me. I glanced to the young man once more before putting my swords back into my arms.
“What’s really going on here Lucy?” Val asked me once he was within three feet of me. He sounded tired and frustrated. But his question rather surprised me.
“What do you mean, Val?” I asked him cautiously. I did not like the accusatory tone in his voice. I narrowed my eyes at him just slightly to show my irritation.
“They say that there are two different thought patterns coming from where you are standing,” Val explained, it looked like he was trying to keep his emotions under control. “So please tell me what is really going on. Are you infected with a parasite or have you gained a second soul or what? What is it?”
I opened my mouth to tell him what I thought that they, whoever they were, were sensing but I couldn’t. It wasn’t time yet to tell them. I had this horrible feeling that if I told them before my water broke I might lose the baby. It was seriously that delicate of a situation considering that I wasn’t supposed to be able to have children of my own. So this was a miracle that I wasn’t about to spoil.
“I can’t tell you,” I told Val as I narrowed my eyes. My swords pressed against my wrists in case I needed to defend myself. “You just have to trust me on this. I know what I’m doing.”
Val looked at me surprised I don’t think he expected that kind of response. This was not just something that I could talk about yet. Val took a couple steps back still looking at me with that surprised expression.
“Really? You’re going to react like this after everything that I did for you,” I said to him stopping his retreat. I know that I was hitting below the belt here on this but I needed him to understand that I really couldn’t tell him fo a good reason. I tried to take a step toward him, but immerse pain shot out of my abdomen, making me crumple to the ground. A warm liquid began to seep from my legs, ah my water broke.
“Well now I can tell you, I guess,” I commented to Val as he rushed to my side. I looked him dead in the eyes as I said it. “I’m pregnant, and my water just broke!”
“Whoa, when did this happen?” Val asked me startled. I groan as another wave of pain shot through me, making me close my eyes.
“Long before I disappeared.” I told Val through my clenched teeth. I had no idea when exactly this happened because it was not supposed to happen.
“I thought that this couldn’t happen,” Val commented, but it wasn’t directed at me. He had turned around to the young man that was now a few feet from us.
“So did we,” the young man replied he looked down at me. “Lucinda had always been quite sad that she couldn’t have her own children.”
“Then as soon as Avin lost his mother while attempting to give birth to her third child, I gave up on that idea,” I continued for him but I had to pause as I felt a contraction rip through me. Tears stung my eyes but if I was going to get any help I had to finish my story. “I couldn’t stand to see how devastated he was and knowing that it was ten times more dangerous for me to have a child just made my thought process more permanent. Of course that’s just when my body decides to tell me that I was pregnant. Go figure.”
I felt another spasm of pain that made me cumple up into a ball. I felt a hand on my back but I couldn’t look up to see who it was because of how much pain I was in.
“Let’s get you to a more comfortable place, sis,” this came from the young man it must have been his hand on my back.
“Thank you Tenzin my brother,” I whispered to him as I managed to glance up at him. He looked like he was still smiling. “Sorry I took so long.”
Tenzin called a few of the people out of the shadows and I was moved into one of the buildings that had actually been completely restored. I was laid down on some blankets on the ground. There I stayed for the next two agonizing hours. The bays had been removed from the room as soon as I was laid down on the blankets. I’m pretty sure that I passed out after everything was done.