Saturday, May 16, 2009

WoL: Part 7 - The Night

Waves of Love
Part 7:
The Night

Regeus walked along the cool stone path, his bare feet soaking in the smoothness of the stone as he seemed to float, dazed, in the warm night air. The stars all twinkled overhead in the violet sky, a large, pale moon gleaming overhead. The city had fallen away to rolling hills of deep green grass as far as the eye could see. Regeus stopped. He listened. There was absolute silence. He felt a tear snake down his cheek, reached to wipe it away, but his arms were too heavy… heavy like his chest… like his heart. He felt the weight grow too large, falling to his knees, tears pouring from his face. All he could do was bow his head and let the tears come. His eyes snapped open in the darkness of his room, his hand wiping sweat from his brow. After taking a deep breath, Regeus rolled over and went back to sleep.


Tycus walked along the street, the soft glow of the lanterns casting faint yellow light around the large fountain in the middle of the square. The light fell on Sealia’s hair, finding golden veins that fell in curls on her back. They were sitting on the edge of the fountain, the soft gurgling lullaby of the water behind them as they watched the stars. Between them were a basket that he had brought.

“Well, are we ready?” she asked turning and flashing a smile that made his very heart melt.

“Let go.” He said, taking her hand and pulling her along a small side path.

They walked up a side street, past a row of tall houses, and came to a flight of stairs carved in the wall. They walked up the stairs which curved back to the tall houses, until they came to very top of the house. There, a narrow bridge connect the rooftop to another. Both were laughing as they ran precariously across it to the next rooftop.

From there, he led her to a ladder propped up against the side that led to a taller house. On and on they went, ever inward, ever upward, until finally they had come to the great wall of the library. Here, Tycus pulled several layers of thickly grown ivy aside to reveal a black, wrought iron ladder. Sealia went up and he came after her with the basket.

They climbed in the green tunnel of ivy for a while, and then the next moment they were out, out in the sky, on top of the massive turquoise dome, overlooking the city. Faint, silver clouds wisped across the deep, velvet sky, where single silver stars shone like diamonds.

“Tycus.” Sealia smiled, turning to him, “Its wonderful.”

“Thanks.” He smiled as he pulled a blanket out of the basket, “I thought we could have a picnic up here.”

Soon they were both sitting on the soft, woolen blanket, the bread and cheese on one side, the spiced wine on the other side. Sealia laughed as Tycus went on and on about his encounter with Orpheus at the beach. He smiled, loving her laugh, her voice when she spoke. His heart was beating fast, and his hands were shaking, and he desperately hoped she didn’t notice.


Regeus was sleeping in his bed. The room gazed at him with vacant eyes, while shade and shadows slithered around the bed posts. Regeus knew they were there. He saw them slithering along the floor, winding around the legs of the bed, slowly ever slowly, creeping up the sheets. But he couldn’t wake up, his eyes wouldn’t open, his hands wouldn’t move. They came closer, began wrapping around his arms and legs, a putrid scent of brackish water all around him. Then from within the shade he saw a face, a face that seemed strangely familiar. The hand of the face reached forward and touched his forehead. Immediately everything went darker than it had already been.


Sealia was enjoying the evening with Tycus, as she watched him go on and on about his voyages and his poems and his love for wine. He was so adorable the way his hands shook with nervousness, and how he was desperately trying to hide the fact. His face was constantly blushing, and he made more than a few awkward comments that caused him to turn even redder.

But he would get over that. After a little while, he would grow comfortable around her, and he would let his guard down. She smiled inwardly as she thought of what it would be like spending the rest of her life with Tycus. The night was warm and sweet and the whole time as they were speaking, they were moving closer and closer. Finally she could feel his warm breath when he spoke. He had become visibly more nervous.

The talking stopped, they were simply there, staring into each other’s eyes. His were dark, mysteries awaiting there. It was his mysterious ways which had first intrgued her. Now staring into those deep pools of mystery she was filled with a longing to dive into them, search out his thoughts for herself. He swallowed hard and leaned forward a bit more, slightly pressing his lips to hers, then pulled away quickly, as if he had done something wrong.

She smiled. He blushed. She smiled more and he smiled too. Then, as he leaned in again to kiss her once more, they suddenly heard a commotion behind her. Turning Sealia gazed across the library dome to the glass and gold dome across the way from them. The royal palace. Lights were flickering as torch bearers and servants were running back and forth. Shouts and cries filled the night.

“What’s going on?” asked Tycus worriedly.

“Nothing. Nothing the Archduke couldn’t handle at least.” She turned looking away, the shouts still filling her ears.

“Maybe we should go see. The Duke was the one who introduced us after all, and he’s been my patron this whole time. Come on.” Tycus said as he quickly packed everything up.

Sealia sighed, closed her eyes and said, “Fine. Here, hold on to me.”

Tycus blushed as placed his arms around Sealia’s neck. The next moment golden feathers ballooned out of her, expanding into giant wings as a song burst from her mouth. She spread her large wings and soared on the wind currents across to the other dome, circling once before landing in the plaza before the main door. Her feathers all retracted and she brushed herself off.

“Alright, let’s see whats the matter.”

“Lady Lia!” called one of the servant girls who had attended her before, “Come quickly! It’s the Duke!”


Regeus lay completely still, vines wrapped around his whole body. He tried to move but each time he did the vines tightened their hold. Then they began to slither closer to his head. He realized they weren’t vines, they were tentacles. Looking through the murky darkness he saw a single spiraling shell, from where they were all coming from. In the darkness, all was silent, and a sickening sense of lack of air was all around him. He tried to scream and water filled his mouth.


“Lia, Tycus, I’m glad you’re both here.” The Archduke said as they entered.

There was a large crowd of servants and guest bustling about Regeus’ bed. He lay on the coveres, deathly still. His face was pale and covered in sweat. At first Sealia couldn’t make out any breathing until he suddenly gasped for breathe, took a few hard breathes and then went still again. Persephone was at his side, bathing his forehead with a cold towel.

“Can’t you heal? Isn’t your seal suppose to protect your family from disease?” asked Sealia trying to ignore the pang or worry that had sprung up.

“That is why I am worried, child.” The Archduke said with a look she had never seen before, concern, lack of control. “This is done by a power greater than mine. I am attempting to undo it even now, though I may need you to lend me your voice.”

Sealia looked on Persephone’s pleading face, the Archduke’s worried eyes, and then on Regeus who was still not breathing. She nodded her head.

The Archduke spread his wide robed arms and immediately a line of light began spreading on the wooden floor from each arm, forming a circle the encompassed the entire bed, with Sealia, Tycus, and Persephone in it. The Archduke spoke a single word in an untelligible tongue, and the family seal appeared in glowing ruins within the circle. Regeus did not stir, not even to breathe.

Persephone held her hands together as if praying, tears flowing from her eyes, as she gripped a pendant around her neck and began reciting something under her breath. The entire circle of light changed from white to intense blue light, shining brightly and creeping up the sides of the bed. The room was shaking, the servants all falling back in fear, many prostrate on the floor.

Regeus stirred a bit, took a breath, and was quiet again. The Archduke was straining, perspiration on his face as his whole frame shook. He spoke through clenched teeth, “You … will… not… take my son… from me! No!... No! …. Sing Lia! Sing!”

Lia stood there in the circle, eyes fixed on Regeus. In her heart, a hurricane of emotions raged, and she felt both anger and fear surface. But then she heard the sound of a lyre being plucked beside her. Looking on Tycus and his determination, she felt all her anger change to pity. She felt compassion enter her heart again, and she began to sing.


Regeus saw the face of the octopus seem to grin almost with wicked pleasure, when he heard it. A voice, cool and clear, it sand across the dark emptiness. The voice of an angel, singing words that made his heart melt and breath fill his lungs again. The tentacles began to glow with a golden light and melt away before the power of the voice.

Regeus pulled free from the tentacles and began swimming through the inky black water towards the sound of the voice coming from the surface. He kicked harder as he saw the golden light sparking above the surface above him. He swam faster and faster until finally he broke through the surface, his world flooded by the golden light.


As the golden light that shone from Lia faded away, the room grew silent. All looked with expectancy towards the bed. The Duke shuddered and then coughed and began breathing again, all clapping and cheering when they saw that he lived. The nurses immediately shushed everyone and directed them out of the room. Persephone took the basin of water out, and the Archduke gave Lia a look that said, “thank you” before limping out of the room weakly, leaning on his staff.

“You did it Sealia.” Tycus said smiling, hugging her around her waist. “Come on, lets go.”

“Just one more thing I have to do.” She walked over to where Regeus was still lying asleep, and spoke softly into his ear, “Regeus, I forgive you. I guess we are no longer enemies. Maybe we can even be friends again. Someday. We’ll see.”

She walked out of the room with a slightly confused Tycus. No one saw the single tear run down Regeus’ cheek.

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