by Ruth Davis Hays 2011
Before Lauralei had been so ceremoniously ushered out of the Khnyghtsyde house, she had seen Ammarron return from the monastery. Unfortunately, she was not to hear what had occurred there nor how her lost fae lover fared…
D’harromar’rie’khiall awoke to the chill air of the monastic cell prickling his tender skin as the bandages were removed from his wounded area. He felt dizzy and weak with a strange, dry dust covering his eyes and a thick, sweet tasting paste in his mouth. His body was still churning with sickness, but it was far less than it had been. His mind could focus on his surroundings. The throbbing ache had exited his head and centralized in his bolls, which reassured him that they were still there, but it would not prevent him from keeping food down any longer.
Swallowing the residue of the healing potion in his mouth, he tried to speak and found that only a crackling sound came out. The monk who had been unwrapping the cotton dressing around ‘Khiall’s scrotum in order to administer a pungent salve from a small tin container stopped his work and patted the fae on his shoulder with a thin-lipped smile. Saying nothing, the older man put a finger to his lips and gently shook his head.
‘Khiall let his body lapse back into the cot and decided that questions could wait for later, for his head was beginning to fade from hunger. He closed his eyes as the man went back to his duties. The cold salve made him wince and flinch. But, the soothing warmth that soaked in eased his pain and was almost pleasurable. He fell into a calm sleep.
Ammarron Bhaalaweiss Khnyghtsyde stood in the narrow doorway to the tiny cell, watching her dark son sleeping peacefully. The High Priest stood behind her. They were alone in the silent corridor; the chill, pale, stone walls stretching out in either direction interrupted at intervals by wooden doors kept their words from prying ears. Young, apprentice priests and acolytes slept behind each dark threshold.
“You will take care of him?” her low alto voice, softly rolling into the still air asked. Father Illis nodded as her melancholy green eyes turned to him. “And you will teach him to find peace with your Spirit Guide, Coreigan?”
“He will be as one of us, Mistress. Your generous donation will compensate the Monastic University for his care.”
“Good.” She stepped away as he shut the cell door. Her hands were tucked tightly into her long, full sleeves and her long, silken skirt rustled on the flagstones harshly. Her face was smooth and tranquil, though her heart shrank with disappointment. It had been her compromise with Solomen in order for him to pay for D’harromar’rie’khiall’s healing that pained her. She had to leave her son here, among these humans, for as long as Solomen was alive.
As the carriage pulled away, bundling her back to the lonely, nerve-wracking Khnyghtsyde mansion, Ammarron grit her teeth and swore that she would have her son with her once again.