They had been blind sided by more than they were aware of, their troops now holding in position as the female Commander of the Everlandian Army had Aerian in combat, matching her move for move as Aerian ducked beneath a swipe at her. She growled in frustration deflecting the next swing away from her allowing her to find her footing.
The woman had really grated on her the last few hours finally against Virra better judgement goading her into this fight, more frustrating was she was getting the better of Aerian slow but sure. Aerian planted her foot and instantly she knew as the next strike took her blade from her hand leaving her open.
“Time to die you little bitch” The commander squealed in glee
Aerian looked to the ground and waited listening to the whistle of metal through the air before the clatter of it been deflected showering her in blue sparks, Aerian scrambled back before looking to her father, his eyes cool, unnaturally calm.
“Not unless you plan to kill me too” He stated it no malice nor intent a simple fact
“Kane….” The woman stammered
“Clever girl, now back back up, unless you plan to take me on as well” Kane simple held his blade in place as he reached taking Aerians hand and helping her back to her feet “Aishani is with Virra, neither are too pleased right now
“She …. Bitch pushed me too far” Aerian snapped trying to at least sound it wasn’t all a series of bad luck.
“Because if you’d have killed her it’s an act of war, if she had killed you it’s an act of war” Kane replied again a statement of fact
“I ..have my orders” The woman tried to explain only to be cut off by Kane
“I don’t care who gave you your orders, you are going to turn around and you are going to walk away, because trust me if you don’t I will inform the Queen of the Councils attempt to directly undermine her authority, and you won’t make it a month as Commander of the Everlandian Army, quite honestly the choice is yours”
“You’re letting her go?!” Aerian scoffed in anger
“We have a wedding to plan, and they don’t want to go through those mountains because if they do they won’t make it out alive” Kane nodded in Aishanis direction “She is elder to the very people you’re about to go try to murder, as I said none too pleased”
Aishani stood rigid now, not at all pleased as her golden eye held a spark and the threat permeated the air thickly with not only the aura of authority but the means of something more primal. Her palms rested openly upon the hilt of her blades, fingernails which had grown into sharpened claws tapped upon the surface.
Virra stood to her side while expression was enigmatic but frustration darkened her already black eyes, appearing flushed to the situation of not being able to contain Aerian. But, there was a definite space to Aishani to the oozing presence from the female. After a moment, Virra moved in to near Aerian offering her a hand, though, nothing else passed her lips.
“His words are the truth. I recently undertook the title, I suggest you turn around. There has been enough conflict in these lands it is time for things to change.” Aishani spoke with such authority and truth, moving to stand beside Kane. “Turn and leave, go to the Council and inform them of the change. No one is to be a threat to those beneath the crust, unless having to deal with the Elders and the House Elcarus of Dentarius.”
The woman eyed Aishani nervously “So the rumour is true, a drow with the power of the werewolf, no wonder they sent us” There was an attempt at victory as Kane looked over his shoulder a second force now gathering behind their own “And that is the entire force of Dentarius at our back”
“Pack it up” She barked angrily turning on her heel “This isn’t over Elcarus!” She snapped “I want your daughters life”
“Yea you and everyone else” Kane retorted darkly before drawing Aishani close looking to one of his “Ensure they leave our territory, then return to Dentarius” then man nodded and bowed extracting himself from their presence
“They will return to Elvera to lick their wounds, but as she said this wont be the last we seen of them” He shook his head softly “Alright pack it let’s go home” he called to the rest
Aishani remained still, watching as the woman returned to her own group. “She is not good for Everlandian Army. A personal vendetta is no way to proceed.” She then softened her tone and dimmed the predatory ambiance, kissed his hand while beginning to move and assist the remaining Dentarius arms to pack their belongings.
Virra glanced to Aerian, while returning to their own pitched tent in order to begin closing things down. Clearly, Aerian had hurt her and only silence was her coping mechanism.
“Vendettas are never good, alas it seems to be the way of our politics, someone is always playing for someone elses agenda my love, we will fall back for now, there is a garrison of ours not too far from here, if the Emerald City needs them they will answer” He kissed her cheek now aiding in the packing of the groups.
Aerian slumped down on the log wiping the blood from her lip “Pride, Dad said it was going to get me killed, I’m an asshole and I’m sorry” she sighed softly, looking to the blood for a moment “This is why Uncle Hades didn’t want me out here, I struggle to control my ego”
Virra glanced to her from finishing off tethering up the tent and arranging their belongings. After a time, she settled beside Aerian, lifting a hand in a vice grip forcing her to look at her. “Yes, you were an asshole especially to me. It doesn’t hurt to listen to those that care for you, Aerian. We do not tell you things to be cruel. Next time, I’ll just knock you out but I didn’t think it was appropriate before the forces beneath you.” She flicked her tongue over Aerian’s bloodied lip and then crushed her lips against hers to allow for Aerian to feel the sting of not only Virra’s words but the kiss. “You just have making up to do to me. Come on, let’s get our stuff loaded to head out with the others.”
Aerian stood as they packed the air was cold and as they made their way back toward Dentarius the snow began to fall, it wasn’t long before once again the forests danced in a majestic white. Kane smiled softly.
“If I didn’t know better I’d say the realm was giving us our blessing my love” He shook his head shifting a few loose flakes of snow from his hair “Or it’s trying to kill me again?”
Aerian had kept herself quiet the whole way, her mind oddly occupied by the days events, still stinging from been handed her ass for the first time in a long time. It was one mistake and it almost cost her, if it hadn’t been for her fathers usual sense of timing she would in that moment have lost the fight and her life “What the hell did I do?” She snapped angrily into the air, one tug halted her stead and she slid from the saddle rushing into the trees, as the road faded she fell to her knees tears falling in anger, shame, frustration the violent wave of emotion was hard even for her to process.
Kane heard the commotion behind him catching a fleeting glance of Aerian disappearing into the trees his instinct to follow, he simply rounded his horse and halted the troop “She needs you more than I right now” he called to Virra “While I have no doubt Aerian was in no danger, my intervention prevented things escalating further for you both, still she isn’t used to losing, it’s a hard lesson we need to be reminded of sometimes”
As Kane looked behind to holler at Virra she was already dismounted and disappearing into the forest. She ran until heading the crying from Aerian and slowed to fall behind the red head in her knees and wrap her arms around her from behind.
There was no control, nor was their reason for her breakdown only crying until Aerian could no longer breath, in her head she could her the screams she wished so desperately to let loose but the lack of oxygen prevented her doing so, and that was her way until the edge of unconsciousness could be felt and her body revolted with control.
Her body settled the tears still fell but she felt the comfort of her beloved “I’m sorry, I … they don’t need to see this, I just needed …. I had to break sooner or later, though seems to be happening a lot lately?” She sighed softly a shudder of sobs followed her words “I do so hate to lose”
Virra remained silent to Aerian’s rambling and only toughened her embrace to wrap her in warmth and comfort. After a time she rounded to kneel before her and filled her chin up to look drop in her eyes with those black piercing hues. “Learn from it.”
“I will, I just hate the fact I need to” Aerian sighed softly as she looked back toward the road, that was when it hit mind splitting pain as she squealed her hands snapping to her head as she lent into Virra.
The images flashed fast and hard through her mind as she held onto Virra as the onslaught continued. She shuddered as they passed her eyes met Virras as she looked into her lovers eyes for a long while “Not as broken as I thought” she breathed softly “Damn that fucking hurts”
“Now that is this ego talking. Take a moment to consider how many times I’ve been beaten down. I had to prove myself with an organization that is full of hedonist pigs. Each time I had to learn and found those weaknesses in not just them but me to refine and strengthen. Out never was easy.”
Virra fell silent and offered Aerian the warmth of her arms and stroked her red threads. “What happened? Did you see something?”
“Yes, no …. It was a lot, but at the same time nothing, pieces” Aerian wiped a thin line of sweat from her brow as she watched Virra “I’m sorry for all of this mess, you just want to be happy and free and you go and fall in love with the psychic nut job who can’t even read her own vision half the time”
She shook her hair with a smile “It’s all pieces of a larger puzzle, though on the upside doesn’t seem to be showing our imminent demise for once, more something big but it felt happy, not people happy but the realm itself was happy. Wish I knew more” She pulled herself to her feet taking Virras hand gently “We should get back, I’d like to take you home”
“Happy and free? I’m not happy and free without you, Firefly. Well that is a good thing that no demise is to occur, even making the realm happy.” Virra nodded to Aerian and rose after her, walking with her and curling an arm around her waist to keep her close.
Aishani leaned forward to pat the thick neck of the steed, glancing to Kane. “Blessing or not, my love. The realm knows what you are capable of and in receiving. I feel things changing, my love but that which I do not know.” She straightened in her saddle and glanced over her shoulder as Virra and Aerian returned to their mounts. “Well, they are back. Let’s keep moving.”
Kane nodded as he watched the two return a short snap of the reigns turned his horse and the group began to move along the path.
“Things are definitely change, things will get better for us I’m sure of that” He smiled softly as they headed for home. The air had grown cold as the snow had begun to pick up pace, the forest now covered in a thin layer of white.
“At least the winter is almost over, the spring brings change for us all” #
Aishani nodded to Kane as her steed moved along his own, lifting her golden eyes skyward that caused the snow to drift gently down and lay a blanket of white upon the world around them. “You are right. Spring things will be more mobile and warm. In all honesty I cannot wait to shed all these layers.”
“You can just as easily do that in our bed” Kane replied softly there was intent in his words as the path left the dark confines of the forest, the town loomed off their direct path the road curving up and into the hills led to the mansion.
Some of the troops peeled off headed into the village the rest headed to their own houses and families left just Kane, Aerian, Aishani and Virra on their road home.
“We’re gonna go on ahead dad” Aerian smiled weakly but enough to let him know she was Ok before taking off ahead, Kane watched after her for a moment before returning his attention Aishani “We all need some time to just be happy, or at least catch our breath”
Virra snapped her reigns while following after Aerian with a wave, though, Aishani glanced to Kane as they made their own path to the mansion. “Yes. Catch our breathe, that would be nice. Plus a nice soak in the springs is long overdue.”