Friday, April 13, 2012

Chapter 116 - BELOVED SHIELD


I woke again and gazed up at the glowing blue orb suspended over my resting place. I was beginning to hate that orb. Why wouldn’t they just let me die? I heard a stirring at my side and closed my eyes again.

“Come and have something to eat, Steven. He’ll wake up soon enough.”

I listened to the retreating footsteps until they were out of hearing and then I left. Once again, I didn’t have a destination; I just flung myself out across the surface of the planet. From there I began my search. It was early fall. The basilisks would be aggressive as they search for enough food to sustain their bulk through the winter when hunting was hardest.

I wanted a big one and I wouldn’t be satisfied until I found the biggest one on the planet.

It took me four and a half days to find one I considered big enough. I didn’t sleep or eat. I hadn’t drawn energy either. I did nothing to sustain myself. Only my determination kept me on my feet. Then, there it was. It would have put a semi-truck to shame with its size, and it was only a single rise away from a herd of baston.

I put myself on that rise. Behind me, the baston ran off at my appearance. The basilisk was hungry; they are always hungry. I just stood there and watched the monster come.

Suddenly there was a lithe figure standing in front of me, between me and my goal.

She turned around and faced me. “I won’t let you do this.”

It was Patricia standing there. The basilisk was going to be on her in seconds. I teleported forward and scooped her out of danger. “I have to do this. Stay back,” I told her as I set her down out of harm’s way.

I turned back to the basilisk, but she snagged my arm. “I won’t let you.”

I teleported away from her grip and back to the fangs I was seeking to impale myself upon. She was there in front of me again. This time she was only inches away from that gaping, fang-filled mouth.

Once again, I pulled her out of harm’s way. She clung to me. Her gentle voice directed my magic the way she used to so long ago and I couldn’t help but obey her. She took us away from the basilisk, and when we had left it far behind, she shook my shoulders before holding my face in her soft hands. “You can’t kill yourself. Your magic won’t let you and neither will I. Come on, dance with me. Dance a water dance.”

She began to sway and turn a hypnotic rhythm around me. I could only follow her. She spread her arms as I did and a few drops of rain hit my face. She spun faster and I had to do likewise.

I was just finishing when the others found me. I opened my eyes and reached for my wife only to see that my beautiful Patricia was no longer dancing with me. I sank to the ground sobbing; my arms were so empty. Steven knelt beside me and pulled me into a hug. When I had cried myself out, he helped me to my feet. “Let’s go back now.”

I nodded and Oskan took us back to the cave. I paused briefly by the orb and drew my fill, then I went to my room, closing off my chambers behind me. I woke early in the morning of the second day and went out to the table where I fixed myself a meal. I put a big chair in the corner and curled up in it to think, remembering that my Patricia had sat in another one just like it – once upon a time.


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