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Elle and Mias: Chapter 37Elias was being oddly cooperative when the party returned to the castle and Hilda informed her elder sister about their new 'guest'. Helga wasted no time throwing him into a prison cell; she didn't even bother to interrogate him. And Elias didn't fight or even object. He might have been fatigued, but that didn't explain his sudden mellow demeanor.
"I don't know what you're up to," Elle said to him from beyond the prison bars. "But I'm sure it's nothing good."
"Heh," his lips curved into a smile. "I just thought I'd pay my long lost sister a visit. I didn't expect you to be here, ruining my good name."
"Your name is as filthy as you are," Elle said bravely. "Your sister's better off not knowing she has a man like you for a brother."
"I'm well aware of Elias," a deep female voice spoke up and Elle turned to see Helga escorting Ia into the cell ward.
Now that Elle got a clear look at the woman, it was obvious she was a Dormaeus what with her dark hair and custom eye markings. She carried
Elle and Mias: Chapter 57Elle turned her nose to the autumn wind and let a current of wheat scented air waft into her tiny nostrils. After sighing happily, she pointed the stalks out to Berenos. "This section is ripe!"
"Alright!" Berenos called back to her.
Elle smiled and brushed a bit of dirt off her cheek.
Four months had passed since their return from the northland and life overall had been uneventful. Mias was busy enjoying the prospects of being an undergarment conglomerate and taking the Dormaeus family in a new direction. Mias' ties with his sister in Noric also put him in position to represent his region when the embassy got together to discuss politics. He was becoming quite a powerful man without needing to use his magic.
The Stag brothers busied themselves fostering Fionos. Elle saw the three frequently enough and often stayed with them when Mias had business errands he had to tend too. Today was one of those days. She was busying herself helping them with the harvest of their crops.
"I never thoug
Elle and Mias: Chapter 38"ACHOO!" Abernos sneezed and promptly wiped his finger under his nose as he and Viola followed a frost covered trail without the assistance of Leadbury's nose to guide them. "Gah that Leadbury..."
"It can't be helped. He doesn't have fur to insulate his body," Viola said calmly as she marched on ahead of him. "How can you complain of the cold? I'm having no difficulty."
"You're clearly not a normal woman," Abernos sniffled and rubbed his mitten covered hands together for warmth. "How are we supposed to pinpoint Elle without Leadbury's nose anyway? All he told us was to continue heading north."
"Weren't you supposed to be optimistic Mr. Abernos?"
"Not when it's this cold out," he trotted to catch up with her. "Speaking of optimism, you have an interestingly high degree of confidence Miss Viola."
"Because it's all a little too coincidental. We believe Elias was heading to Noric and based on Leadbury's tracking that appears to be where Elle is as well. I'm willing to bet their paths
Elle and Mias: Chapter 40"You summoned me?" Elias asked as he entered a large study where his younger sister sat scribbling notes at a desk.
"Yes, kindly take a seat," Ia said without looking up from her work.
Elias casually approached the table and sat opposite of her.
"How are you enjoying your stay?" She asked, her eyes and hand still concentrated on writing.
"In all honesty I wish you would have kept me in prison," Elias groaned.
Ia chuckled, "Is that so?"
"What is this about? Surely you didn't summon me simply to exchange pleasantries."
"And why not? I've been so preoccupied with my duties that I haven't been able to visit you. Is it so rare for you to be suspect of your family?"
"When it's the Dormaeus family, yes," he responded coldly. "If this is just frivolous conversation, I shall take my leave."
As he stood to leave Ia smacked him back into his seat with her quill. "Sit. You have no matters here that acquire your attention so you will remain in my presence until I dismiss you. Or are you eager to re
Elle and Mias: Chapter 55All Elle could do was wait. The halls of Kaldberg castle, which once made her feel welcomed, now made her feel isolated and alone. The cloud of death hung low around all the inhabitants of the castle, reminding everyone of their own mortality and words that are best said when happiness, not sorrow, can still blossom from them.
"Daddy " Hilda whimpered as she buried her head into Alu's chest. It didn't take her long at all to accept the Runeskeeper as her father and she had every intention of continuing their relationship as child and parent.
Alu simply smiled and stroked his daughter's short hair tenderly.
"He's not a handkerchief, Hilda," Helga reminded her. "I don't understand how you can cry for an evil man "
"Someone has to!" Hilda sniffled. "He might have done a lot of bad things, but he was still human If we don't value his life, we're no better than he was and I don't think it's possible for anyone to be truly evil "
"How stupid " Helga mutt
Elle and Mias: Chapter 39The click of Elias' boots resounded through the halls, followed by the echoing chip of talons against the stone floor. He quickened his pace in hopes of putting some distance between him and his follower, but alas the friendly horror remained on his tail. His tolerance for annoyance finally reached its boiling point. He whirled and shouted, "Must you follow me?!"
Hilda smiled, "Yes. Lady Ia isn't as naïve as you think she is. You get one chance. If you betray her trust, you'll be thrown back into prison and left to rot. So be a good boy Eli, okay?"
Elias cringed at the affectionate and disgusting nickname she bestowed upon him. "I'm finding it a bit difficult to stay in good spirits with your constant irritating presence."
"You don't like me, do you?" She asked, a smile still on her face.
"You're a feather headed, bird brained, molting mess of stupidity plagued with annoyance and irritation that supersedes a rash!" He shouted.
She giggled, "Eli, you sound like my sister."
ReflectionsVal's pursuit led him to the foul beast's domain. The hollowed-out cavern reeked of blood and rancid meat. The dim light he had seen as he charged through the tunnel after the monster could now be identified: torches. Rows of mysteriously lit torches lined the walls of the huge cave. At its center was a substantially large labyrinth of mirrors.
He spotted the beast entering.
He spun his silver broadsword in his hand and hurried in behind it.
His garb was a simple blue and white crusader's leather with thick armored pads and reinforcing steel studs. Lightweight and flexible, but quite effective defense against blunt blows and – in a pinch – the slashing claws of the unholy spawn of the earth. All monster-hunters wore a similar variety in Val's experience. It would serve him well in these close quarters of the mirrored maze.
Right, left, forward, left, right he turned, always catching a glimpse of the beast's tail as he wove his way through the corridors. Every so often he sp
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