I return to Deep Cavern and find peace. All the danger is gone. Althor is dead. Shai is now human and locked away in a cell - while Storm returns to his Horde and Rawk, Zoraul and Layla are saved from their eternity in stone with Lex’s gifted reverse magic ability. The blood is cleared from Deep Cavern, the mourning continues but a feeling of safety returns. Hael rules the Horde while Madeline is teased by Lochness and I am waiting by the edges of Deep Cavern once more.
My mates are gone.
Thaddeus and Sylvan are no where to be seen and when I reach out, I feel them no where near. At least not in this mountain.
“My father has retreated,” I nearly jump out of my skin as Amadahy appears behind me with Ethne. They seem to have reconciled and they are holding hands tightly together as I turn to face them.
“Good,” I answer shortly as I get my tongue to work after I was thinking too deeply about everything that just occurred.
“You okay?” Amadahy asks, concernced, “...and, not to sound selfish but... am I... am I still welcome to reside here, Luvenia?”
“I don’t know,” I answer flippantly, “You’ll have to ask my fathers.”
“I don’t think so,” Lex jumps up a few steps of rock to join my side very abruptly. I turn to see him eyeing Amadahy with betrayal in his gaze, “You are the reason the Tempest army was able to ambush us from the inside.”
“I can’t help what I was or where I was born. I can only tell you I’ve learned to be different,” Amadahy tries to keep her anger in check. But she doesn’t have to continue to defend herself. With a big breath, Ethne lets go of her hand and faces Lex chest to chest - closing the distance quickly.
“You think you feel betrayal? I hated her when I found out she lied to me,” Ethne whispers passionately, “But she’s my mate - and I can see her aura as a Silver Breed. She is remorseful and regretful. She has a kind heart even if she speaks boldly in the Requiem territory. But above all... I love Amadahy and if you want to accuse her or slam all the blame of all these deaths onto her... you’ll have to kill me first because I won’t hear it from you, Lex, prince or no prince.”
Lex narrows his eyes and pauses to consider Ethne’s protective speech. He seems impressed enough.
“Speaking of princes,” Lex growls low and controlled while glaring into Ethne’s eyes - before turning to me and raising his brows, “You’re wondering where they went, Luv, aren’t you?”
“Yeah, do you know?” I ask tentatively, trying not to appear like I desperately want to know the news.
“By the time Summer was okay and she revived Lochness, he informed the twin princes of their parent’s fate. They’ve left the Requiem Mountains,” Lex advises me.
“But... why?” I ask, my eyes widening.
“To go back to the Horde of Fortune,” Lex states like it’s obvious, “To rule.”
“But...” I can’t question any further.
“Shai’s magic is gone - I effectively killed it with my ability,” Lex purses his lips, waiting for me to work out the obvious, “Luvenia... stone?”
“The Horde of Fortune - they... oh my god,” and then I realise, “Shai turned the majority of Dragons there to stone. But they aren’t stone anymore, are they?”
“Mmhmm,” Lex nods, “Thaddeus and Sylvan need to restore order - as the new Dragon Lords of the Horde of Fortune. It’s their right and their place. So, what are you going to do?”
“Me?” I point to my chest and I watch Amadahy snort with my indecision while Ethne smiles.
“Yeah, what are you going to do?” Amadahy asks.
“Wait around here?” Ethne teases, “Or go to them? This place is in mourning. It’s a mess. Thad and Sylvan just found out their parents were both murdered and a Horde they were born to rule has been saved from an eternity of existing as living sculptures. I think they need your support, Luv.”
“But they didn’t tell me that they left,” I snap defensively, “They obviously don’t want me to go with them right now.”
“Althor was their kill, their right to justice... and you took that from them,” Lex adds in after an awkward moment of silence and shared stares, “Avenging their parent’s killer... is no longer in their hands. And it’s forever gone. Don’t get me wrong, sis, you did the right thing. But they might be a little resentful. It’ll hurt their prides.”
“And their egos, no doubt. I protect them and they run off away from me, typical,” I throw my hands into the air in exasperation while Lex, Amadahy and Ethne all wait for me to make my final decision, “If you all think I’m just going to fly all the way to the Horde of Fortune just to be shunned...”
“They are your mates. You need to work it out!” Ethne almost yells it at me, obviously projecting her own revelations at me, “Go to them!”
“I was on very good terms with Thaddeus and Sylvan just before the war,” I delay the inevitable and Lex rolls his eyes.
“Princess,” Amadahy raises her hand and speaks gently but with a condescending tone towards me, “Whether or not you want to face their emotions on the subject of their murdered parents - they’re still young Twin Leading Breeds. They may be fully grown but they’re still a little impulsive. They are rushing back to age old Dragons who only know real respect. Do you think those Dragons give respect blindly? If you don’t go to support them, at least go to keep them alive. If there is one thing old Dragons love more than respect - it’s seeing young love blossom. Go to the Horde of Fortune. Help your mates establish order and win all their hearts over.”
"Fine, I’ll head off,” I see Lex smile when I give in and I don’t bother to respond any further to any of them.
So instead, I turn and run back up to my bedroom - faster than normal. After sucking out Althor’s power, I could feel it constantly running through my veins like a new part to who I was.
However, that was the last thing I had on my mind.
Now, I go with a huff to my wardrobe to find a nice dress.
I had a new Horde to impress.
And two pissed off newbie Dragon Lords.