The Scythe

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She Ran Like Hell To Escape

She scoffed, and he expected she’d call him on his bluff, but she didn’t. She only murmured. “I don’t need your efforts to be miserable.” Her voice broke.

What's that mean.

And why does it sound so sincere?

What's happened to her? He wondered not for the first time. She's changed completely.

He felt like a cad. Sighing heavily, he whispered. “I am sorry, you know.”

“For what?” Her head turned to see him in her peripheral.

Offering her mouth far too close. He put a palm to her cheek and pushed her face away. Unable to meet her permeating stare. Even in darkness.

“That you were slave to the Firoque king. That he did unspeakable things...”

She started to interject but he cut her off, needing to explain. “You left me for Baron, so I wasn’t too shocked to hear you’d abandoned him for...”


“I didn’t! I-” Outraged she huffed.

"Ssh. Just hear me. For once."

She snapped her mouth shut but he could feel her nearly quaking with the urge to argue.

Like always. She couldn't ever let anything lie.

“There were mixed rumors. You’d left, you’d been taken...I just told myself it was none of my concern."

She'd left me. It was no longer my business.

"I figured if you'd wanted my help, you’d have gotten word to me.”

I certainly waited for it, long enough.

How many times had she thought about it? He wondered. Ever? Even once?

She could've put her energy into the river, the rain, anything...To bring her message to me.

He knew about Baron. He grunted hatefully. Her sweet, naive, Baron.

Knew the only word she’d sent him was to stay away or he’d be killed. Perhaps it was Baron that'd said she’d gone of her own accord.

I would've thought so, were I him.

Afterall, who'd be strong enough to have her if she didn't want it?

Nim's thoughts weren't far from his. Remembering sending word to Baron. Knowing Nierwae would’ve tortured her fey lover.

Perhaps even Disseus would've suffered that horrible fate.

Nierwae was unspeakably powerful. Who was to say even the Scythe could’ve gotten her out of those caves?

It'd taken her decades of pretending she’d given up, months of showing she’d no fight left, that she’d submit to any of Nierwae’s dark desires.

And one night of reprieve.

One night the Firoque king had failed to arrive to torture her body.

“But you never called me." Disseus' words broke into her thoughts. Emphasizing harshly. "So I never came.”

What she didn't know was that eventually, he’d even stopped sleeping next to the river hoping word would come. But she need never know about the endless years I had lived on watery banks.


For her.

She didn’t know what to say now. So she just laid there. Quietly pondering how much she should give away. Even as she wondered it, heart tight, she felt him tuck his face in her hair. Likely going to sleep.

Body finally easing, she let herself melt against him. His warmth enveloped her. Without meaning to she gave a tiny purring sound in her throat and felt him tense in response.

“Don’t do that.” He grated through locked teeth.

“What?” She asked sleepily.

“Make-do-that sound.”


Giving a low growl, he rolled her over and flattened his body over hers. Letting her feel the reaction she'd elicited.

When she returned his motions with equal fervor, he moaned. What the devil is this game?

Realizing he could no longer hold back, he shoved at her clothes. Meeting her aggression, as she clawed at his tunic.

Fabric rent as they found each other’s bodies beneath.

In moments their skin melded.

They stared at each other, nearly afraid to blink, as they moved together in fading firelight.

She bit her lip to stem the sounds bubbling up her throat. But in no time he had her making that mewling purr.

Just the way I remembered it. He growled hungrily in response.

Afterward, her slick body lay over him, as he trailed his fingertips over her shoulder blade.

She shivered as cold drops of rain splattered her bare back.

“When'd it begin to rain?” She whispered huskily.

"Hell if I know." He grunted. "I was a bit busy."

Cupping the back of her head, he sighed roughly and rolled her to the side of him. Holding her tight.

Already, the mood was changing. Some sense of foreboding coiling in her stomach as she dreaded tomorrow.

She’d had such a clear idea of how this trip would go.

How had she promptly landed naked and sated back in this former lover’s bedroll?

The one man she swore would never have her again.

The one she’d ran like Hell to escape.

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