She glared at him—she wanted none of his pity. Taking a deep breath, she closed her eyes and dropped the barrier. She clasped her hands and uttered the spell of healing. In seconds, her wounds faded. She had the sinking feeling that he might be there, inches away, ready to take her down. If he was, there was one thing she hoped would work in her favor. One thing. He would’ve realized by now. She had healed his wounds too.She opened her eyes, the flecks of yellow and blue shining against the overabundantly grey irises.
He took her up in his arms, not one to break his promise. He began carrying her back to the rebel base. He took her to the infirmary. A nurse took her. Apparently, she had healed herself, but she would be weak for a while. He sat next to her table and close his eyes, exhausted from the battle.
She was tired. The thing about dark elves is, they can heal—just like light elves—but it’s not as effective. The wounds are gone, but the pain remains for a good while. As a result, she couldn’t fight him when he had scooped her up; when he took her to the base. A mixture of embarrassment and anger stained her skin. As she became aware of this, it made her even more crimson. Still, she was too refined to just storm off.
She was unwilling to risk seeing his face, so she had been looking down from the moment he stepped forward to help. She still looked down. “I…apologize, for both attempting to assassinate you and stabbing you with an arrow,” she whispered, her voice barely audible. She couldn’t just leave it at that, though. It was way to humbling. “But, don’t get me wrong…I would do it again, just a little more successfully.” Her voice was even quieter, but she had said it. Even if he didn’t hear, it made her feel a little better.
"I would beat you down anyway. You wouldn't even have survived without your magic and my...father would've killed you if you came back unsuccessful. Trust me I know he almost tried to do the same to me. Dad and me were never close. He loved my sister like no one else though. She was a good person but we became enemies because of how we were raisied and the sides we took. Eh. Why am I telling you this. Like you care." he said, shaking his head. He leaned back in his chair, letting his black hair come to the sides of his face. It exposed his chocolate skin to the light from the windows.
She smiled, “You think I don’t know the consequences of an unsuccessful mission? I know more of your father’s methods than you. I’ve been by his side for years, you said yourself you two were never close.” Her smile faded in concentration. “Of course, I don’t care. But what does your sister look like?” It’s possible she might’ve seen his sister around the kingdom. It’s also possible that she was the one Xylia had wanted to kill.
"She's a blonde dame. Our mothers were different but we had the same cruel father. She was slim and tall and young the last time I saw her. And trust me I know my father, we had the same teachers after all. Before he broke away that is" he said.
Not as well as I, I’m afraid. There was a reason that magic users where special. Her clan was the most abundant and powerful. They had the most magic expertise. So when the king came to rule, they readily opposed. Guess what? They all died. Except, of course, for Xylia. She was the last one of her clan. She will be the last to bear the insignia on her arm. The raven with the bloody dagger in its beak. “I know your sister,” she said, “I am—was—tasked with protecting her, before this mission.” It was terrible. Your target, right there, and you can’t kill them. She went through it with his sister, and now with him. What great luck she has.
"Is...Is she ok lately?" he asked out of curiosity and a bit of love for his sister. He still loved her. He missed his sister. She was the only one who he felt he belonged with. He sighed in frustration. Too bad she didn't come to the resistance with him. His stupid father kept her there while he had escaped. He hated his father with ebery bone in his body.
She couldn’t resist looking at him; her head tilted in curiosity. “She was this morning, when I left her.” She remembered her replacement, a stupid boy in his mid-twenties. Arrogant and convinced she would fall in love, making him the next king…Wonder which torture cell she put him in, she inwardly laughed. Poor fool. "She was kind of fond of me. It's a shame I'll be beheaded when I get back." She laughed, imagining the sight. Like they'd be able to accomplish anything when their blade disinigrated.
He closed his eyes. Thank god. He missed her. He missed the love of his sister. He sighed and took a deep breath. "That's good that she's ok.....If you want you can stay here. Like with the rebellion. We could use you I guess" he said with a shrug. "If not, I get it. We would have to kill you though" he said.
((I’m leaving for the night. So, good day, until tomorrow—or rather, until later today.))
She laughed, quite genuinely. “You’re not even giving me the option of dying by the king’s wrath? How generous.” She thought about it. “Fine, I’ll stay. I guess.” She could always slip away later, and this could very well serve her purpose—whatever her purpose is, when she plans it out.
"Ok, you will be my apprentice/assistant then. Training starts day after you get better. Your sword skills need to be fixed." he said, shaking his head. He opened his eyes and stood up. "See you then" he said. He walked to his room and hit the hay.
She had stayed in the room for several hours, unable to sleep. Her mind was simply too occupied. Apprentice? Assistant? She hadn’t considered that the rebels would have an organized hierarchy, and that she would undoubtedly become Ziad’s subordinate. Perhaps…I should rethink this. She sighed. From the king to his son—why couldn’t she have a normal boss? Why? And then, there’s the sword. “Your sword skills need to be fixed.” She frowned. They don’t need to be fixed—they’re non-existent. Where on earth did he even get the idea of swords? I was only armed with a bow and arrow! She was also upset that she didn’t have her bow. She couldn’t remember if he’d left it in the clearing or if he took it here and put it somewhere.
Finally, when all she could hear was silence, she decided to abandon the base. She didn’t know if there would be guards, or whatever—but she had to get out of that room. Out of the building. She needed to go to the forest and clear her head.
Ziad went out for a nighttime walk. He was rested and on red alert again. He would go back to sleep in a few hours. He went back out into the garden but did not venture into the forest. It was dangerous at nighttime. He sat crosslegged and he began meditating. His chest went up and down with each breath.
It was easy enough to get out of the base. There were no guards, and no one to stop her. As she left the building and smiled at the cool, crisp air that greeted her, she noticed a garden and a figure sitting within it. It wasn’t hard for her to guess who it might be. Great, I’ll have to get past him—or I’ll have to explain myself. She suppressed a sigh and began her stealthy maneuvers towards the forest. She wanted to get to her special place.
He heard somone moving across the grass. He opened his eyes and looked into the direction He scanned the area. She was escaping. Probably was going to give away the location of the base. He should'be never trusted her. He quietly took out a throwing dagger and he aimed for her calf. He threw it, making his mark. He drew his sword and walked over to her. He hovered above her small frame. "Didn't think you would get away that easy eh?" he said. He shook his head nad held his sword abover his head.
Sure enough, he had detected her presence. She couldn’t hold back her sigh. I need to work on my stealth. Crossing her arms, she looked up at him, somewhat angry that he was taller and she had to look up. “Would you please lower your sword, Ziad? You don’t need to wave it around my head when you’re capable of outrunning me.”
"Where do you thinking you're going" he said, using the flat of his blade to scratch his back. He looked down at her amusingly. "Get back inside" he said a little more sternly. "Next time you run, I won't hesitate to kill you." he said, threateningly. He moved the sword near her throat in a quick motion. He flipped her around and put her closer to his chest, his sword an inch away from taking her life. "Do we have an understanding" he whispered into her ear.
She hated how easy it was for him to flip her around like a cloth doll. She also hated how he did not refrain from doing it, like it was some sick pleasure to have her at his mercy. She considered whether she should use a spell to possess his blade, but astonishingly did not. “No, we do not have an understanding,” she ventured, “that would imply that both sides of the story where communicated and understood. You’ve only stated yours.” She instinctively moved farther from the blade, pressing harder into his chest. “What were you assuming? That I was going back to the king?”
"Yeah. Where else would you go? If you went anywhere else either me or my father would track you down and kill you. You don't have too many choices" he said.