With his hands behind his head, Vlad, his traveling companion, stretched back against the gnarled trunk of a tree. “What do you think she wants?”
“My soul,” Gall grumbled.
Vlad laughed. “Well, if you had one, I suspect you might be concerned.”
Gall glared at him. “You talk too much.”
“And you talk too little, so I make up the difference.”
Gall waved his comment away and continued studying the river.
“Do you have any idea what form she will take?”
“Caretakers can assume any shape, but whatever that is, will be to give them an advantage.”
A sudden chill rushed over both men, and they looked toward the river. The surface bubbled and hissed. Vlad tensed and backed from the edge. A form emerged from the water as a pillar, gleaming, shimmering and folding in upon itself, turning color, green and then solid blue. Slowly the shape approached the edge of the river. Then it hesitated and dissolved as a figure stepped onto the shore.
A beautiful young woman stood with her eyes closed, her face and shoulders partially covered by long black hair. Wrapped around her willowy form was a blue gossamer fabric which sparkled like a spider’s web at first light. With a sudden breath, she opened her eyes and looked upon them.
Vlad gasped at her alluring violet eyes. She took him in as a small smile crept upon her features. Lean arms swept back her hair.
“I am,” she said.
“That you are,” Vlad whispered. “What do we call you?”
She stared at him. “Labels are meaningless, but you may call me Aquisia.”
“What do you want?” Gall said in a rough voice.
Aquisia turned to him, the same hinting smile on her face. “It is good to see you again, Brin Shar.”
Gall’s eyes narrowed. He hated the moniker the Caretaker...
... middle of paper ...
... head in disgust. “Well, it’s your head she’ll be messing with, not mine. Do whatever you want; not that you don’t anyway.”
“A means to an end.”
“Whose end is what I want to know.”
“It’s time,” Aquisia announced in a loud voice.
“I am ready,” Gall replied in kind.
Vlad stepped aside as Aquisia approached. She stopped in front of Gall.
He stiffened, clenching his hands as she placed a hand on his chest. Despite himself, he shivered at the touch, which pulsated with energy. Closing his eyes, he steeled himself for the impact. Aquisia smiled and stroked his cheek with her other hand. His heart raced, and skin prickled. “Make it quick,” he said tersely.
She leaned forward and pressed her lips against his.
His lips tingled. What was the she-demon doing? He opened his eyes as she embraced him.
Vlad spoke, “Now I’m beginning to understand your willingness to bind with her.”
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