Wohoo! Welcome, welcome to today's Wednesday Brief's! I'm back with Rodric, the unicorns and the crazy voyage to recover Fergus. If you'd like to go back and read past chapters, please click here and scroll down to Myths, Secrets and Love.
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Myths, Secrets and Love 7
They had eaten and drunk their fill and still Queen Lenara had to say a word to him beyond polite formalities. Rodric was restless. He wanted to get out of Arvynen and move on with his voyage in pursue of Fergus. He endured. He knew better than to rush anyone into giving him what he wanted, especially when so much hung on the balance.
The servant hovering at his elbow approached him and filled his glass to the brim. Rodric studied him. His heart thundered in his chest and his mouth dried as the young man brought back memories of Fergus. The servant’s build was lighter and his hair fairer but he had a dusting of freckles on the bridge of his nose much like Fergus. A blush covered the young man and he moved away. Rodric sighed and veered toward the table once more. His eyes widened as he realized that while he’d been ogling the service the table had cleared. The only ones that remained seated were him, Queen Lenara and Arjä. Even the King had left.
Lenara’s gaze found his and she smiled, though the gesture did not reach her otherworldly eyes.
“I will be blunt with you, Rodric Belavue. We are in need of your service, almost as badly as you are in need of ours.”
“Why’s that?” Rodric took a sip from his fruity drink and reclined against his chair in a relaxed pose. So the queen had need of him. That was interesting. Albeit he had the impression that they were walking on uneven ground and he was on the falling side. She still had something up her sleeve, though what he could not glimpse. Rodric made a show of glancing about the glade. “It looks to me like you have everything you need right here.”
“Except real life experience.”
“Real life?” He shook his head, not understanding what Arjä was speaking of.
“We live a sheltered life here, Mr. Belavue. We can see far beyond time and place. We can see things that some can never even imagine exist but we lack in day to day interaction.”
“I see.” He took another mouthful and swallowed slowly. “What does that have to do with me?”
Both the Queen and Arjä smiled.
“We know where your lover is.”
“Lover?” Rodric sat up.
“You can’t fool us,” Arjä said.
“I don’t have a lover,” Rodric snarled. “If I did I wouldn’t be on this hellish quest sitting in front of two wenches you presume to know all there is to know about me, I’d be fucking the brains out of him, I mean her. Dammit,” he growled.
“Sit down, Rodric,” Lenara ordered.
“You want to know where your, ah, friend is, and we want to ask you a favor.”
“Well, ask already.” He slammed his fist on the table making the glasses rattle.
“Take Arjä with you.”
Rodric’s jaw dropped. “"Are you kidding me?" He looked at Arjä who was still smiling at him in the same state of undress he’d met her in. “Are you out of your mind? My men will be upon her in minutes.”
“Not if you command them not to.”
Rodric stood up again, vehemently shaking his head. “No can do, your highnesses. I will not take a young woman aboard my ship. Besides, I don’t even know where I’m going. And surely, you will expect me to protect her and bring her back safely. I am not the man you need for such a mission.”
“I can take care of myself,” Arjä protested loudly.
The queen lifted her hand to silence her. “Leave us,” she ordered without glancing at her daughter. Frowning, Arjä bowed and left the glade.
“Sit down, Rodric.”
Rodric gulped down the remainder of his drink and tilted his glass for the servant to fill. He downed it in one shot before sitting down.
“You long for Fergus, his camaraderie, his kisses, his touch, his heart. No, don’t deny it. No man would risk life and limb for only a friend as you claim Fergus to be to you.”
“Men with honor do it all the time,” he retorted in anger.
Lenara laughed. “We both know that you have very little honor left in your heart, Rodric Belavue. Besides, honor and morality have never been a priority for you. You do not search for Fergus out of an honor bound promise. You search for him for your own selfish reasons and though your heart and body is quite certain of what it wants, your mind still eludes the question, and thus you do naught but pretend to care little for the man whom you’re traveling around the world to find.” Lenara sighed dramatically. “I care not that you cannot see beyond your nose to find the truth in yourself. It is none of my concern as you are fond of saying. I do however, need you to draw upon those rotten heartstrings and rusty honor and obey the oath—“
“That was I was forced into.”
“The oath that you gave earlier today. Arjä has things she must accomplish in the human world if she is to become queen of Arvynen one day. She will not be with you the length of your trip. You will separate and she will procure her own passage back home.” A shimmer of white gleaned on the Queen’s flesh as she spoke, her violet eyes sparkling brighter under the candles placed all around them. She blinked and the moment passed.
“What if I refuse?”
“Then your quest will fail.”
Rodric curled his fists into tight balls and bit back a violent retort. Did he have an option? He could send the Unicorns to hell and back and resume his trip, but to where? These people were his only lead and if he wanted to find Fergus he had no other option but to do as they wished. Leveling his gaze at the queen, he nodded.
“Tell me where to go.”
To be continued...
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