Crucible Vows

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Chapter 14

It took a lot of strength for me to get Luna onto Zealot. As much as I wanted to just build a fire and camp out there, it was too cold. Luckily, Zealot understood that his master needed help and helped me get Luna onto his back. Lying down, I was able to slowly move Luna onto the saddle. Before I left, I went back to the Wendigo’s body, which was already beginning to heal. I rolled it over long enough to pull out the dagger. I didn’t want it to attack any more people. So, I moved it back so I could see its exposed chest. No blood was present from this beast. So, I quickly cut open the wound more and eventually found the heart. It felt colder than ice once I pulled it out, but I knew that this would help prevent it from healing or attacking anyone else.

I placed the heart in my pouch and went back to Zealot, who had stood up since I worked on the Wendigo. I reached up and pet right where a white diamond spot against the gray stood out on his forehead. Grabbing the reigns, I began to lead him to the next town. Walking took longer than expected, but I kept following the sun as it began to dip low in the sky. By the time I made it to the next town, night had fallen. As I walked into the lit area of the main square, my hand went up to my ears, which were covered by the headband. I let out a breath of relief.

“Is everything alright miss?” A gentleman asked as he saw Luna on the back of the horse.

I let out a breath. “I need to get this man someplace where I can treat his wounds.”

“Follow me.” He waved at me, and I agreed.

He led us to a house that was dark. No lights in the windows, and no smoke from the chimney. The man pulled a key out of his pocket and unlocked the door. Opening the door, he looked back at me and walked over to help get Luna off of the Zealot.

“I’ll take him inside.” He explained. “There’s a stable in the back that you can take your horse to rest. Come join us when you’re done.”

I nodded. Guiding Zealot to the stable, I was greeted by warmth from other livestock. I helped Zealot settle in by taking off his saddle and reigns. He nudged my shoulder, and I rested my hand on his head. His black mane fell onto his forehead, which I brushed away. I gave the horse a small smile.

“I’ll take care of him,” I reassured. “Don’t worry.”

Zealot shook his head to my words.

I pet him a few more times before I left the stable and walked back around to the front of the home. Knocking on the door, the same gentleman opened the door and invited me in. I walked in and saw Luna resting on the bed. The home was small with a kitchen, bedroom, dining area, and living area all in one room. But it would do for what we needed.

“I rent this house out in the summer for residence who need it.” The gentleman said. “Stay here as long as you need. I started a fire for you, and there’s a basin with water if you need it. Let me know if you need anything else.”

“Thank you,” I stated as I turned to him.

He nodded and left the house. I turned back to Luna and went over to him. I reached for his helmet but paused. I just needed to get to his shoulder. So, I focused on removing the armor surrounding his arm and shoulder. His tunic was in the way. I had to pull up the chainmail and tunic away from his arm. Luckily, it was actually set up with straps to hold it together at the shoulder. After undoing it, I saw the wound. It was bloody and looked bad. At that moment, I remembered the Wendigo heart and pulled it out of my pouch and quickly threw it in the fire to destroy it.

Turning back to Luna, I knew I had to remove his undershirt to be able to treat the wound. But I couldn’t get it over his head with the helmet. I sighed and removed the rest of the armor on his other arm. Eventually, only the undershirt remained. Ever since I began to work with herbs again, I always kept a pair of scissors in my pouch to take clippings when I needed. I pulled out those scissors and began to cut the seam of the shirt until his arm was free. I pulled that out of the way too to prevent any infection from anything on the shirt. While I did this, I warmed some water over the fire in a kettle to be able to clean the wound. Once the shirt was gone, I noticed several things about Luna. He was truly toned and built like any Knight, but what I noticed the most was all the scars over his body. I shook my head and went and grabbed the warm water.

Looking around for a cloth to use to clean, I eventually found something that would work. The whole time I worked, I had to work on steadying my hands. They wouldn’t stop trembling, but I had to make sure Luna would heal properly from his wound. Dipping the rag in the water, I wrung out any excess and began to dab at the wound. Most of his wound was in the front, but there were a few marks on the back of his shoulder that I was able to quickly stop the bleeding. Once the bleeding had slowed, I pulled out the ointment I made for my burn and applied it to his shoulder. It was only then I was able to relax.

Kneeling on the ground next to the bed, I looked over the wound, and was happy to see the ointment begin to work. My eyes wandered to one of the many scars. Without thinking, I raised my hand and allowed my fingers to lightly touch the lighter toned skin. Many of the scars were small, but several of them were large and I could only imagine what happened to him. My eyes went back to the wound. I knew I needed to bind it.

I added another scar. I thought as I began to wrap the shoulder. This wouldn’t have happened if it weren’t for me.

I tried to hold back tears, but they fell as I finished binding the wound. So much had happened simply because of me being in Obrenor. I didn’t want any thing like that to happen. I didn’t want to have to travel to a kingdom far away to be able to survive. I didn’t want to put people in danger simply by being there. I felt horrid for putting Luna through all we had gone through. And what’s worse, I blamed myself for everything. I reasoned that if I had died with my family, Luna wouldn’t have been hurt. If I had died, the Natale’s wouldn’t have lost their business. If I had died, so much tragedy wouldn’t have happened.

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