I think this one is the last Micara post. I do not have much to add to her story anymore. The story is much more detailed in my head but those details do not need to be told – not really. This is a ‘less is more’ kind of tale.
The posts that I have written in this story collection in order of reading:
- Kind Regards
- Love is Blindness
- Lines in the Sand
Nearly silent footsteps followed her as she strode along the hallways of the castle, memory guiding her steps. She had spent years here, learning the lay of the place to make sure she could evade anyone and everyone. She had been prey.
She smiled and stopped. The footsteps behind her hesitated. She whirled around, her smile turning savage. It was a man, a wraith almost, but one who thought he could follow her around. Because he feared his master more than he feared her. No one feared her as they should. Her smile widened and his face lost all color.
“You will tell me who sent you.” She said quietly. The man stood entranced, a bird caught in the gaze of a snake. But he did not speak.
“May I?” Shay asked and she scowled. She had not heard his approach.
“Have at it.”
“Who sent you?” Shay asked conversationally and the man made a small sound of fear.
“I do not like repeating myself.” He said mildly and the man swallowed before whispering a name.
Shay smiled benignly, making the man shiver in terror. “He is yours, love.”
Micara scowled and turned away. “No.”
I watched her sleeping. She looked peaceful and her lips were curved up. It was so rare to see her smile, to see peace on her face. I would do anything to have her look like this when she was awake. “Anything?” a whisper came to me and I nodded, knowing that I had just made a deal with the devil.
“Will you say something?”
“What do you want me to say?”
“Are you okay being here?”
Micara paused. She had just entered his, no their room. She moved to the terrace and sat down on the floor before meeting his gaze. He looked… earnest. Yes, that was the word.
“I would live in hell to be with you and count myself lucky. Just because I dislike the rest of the place is no reflection on my feelings for you.”
“You think this is hell?” Shay asked.
“That is what got through to you?” She raised a brow and he laughed softly, sprawling next to her.
Micara’s finger grazed a stone on the wall as if she was stroking a blade of grass. Her eyes fixated as if the wall was the most fascinating thing in her world.
“Here.” She whispered. “It was here that he slammed you so hard, you bled.”
Shay shuddered, seeing what she could see. Who said the past was gone? It was alive, still like a snake, ready to bite you at the first unguarded moment.
“Then he dragged you to the court, down this hallway. He had you whipped while the nobles watched. He threw you in that windowless cell for two weeks.” She went on, each word bit off like a curse.
“I survived.” Shay murmured, wrapping his arms around her, pulling her close.
“Yes.” She leaned back into him, the word a mere breath.
I roamed the halls, unwilling to face anyone or anything. I had failed. I could feel the pain, holding my chest in a vice. Even breathing hurt, or maybe that was just my bruised ribs. In blood and pain we had been bonded and I had sent her away. Because I was too weak to protect my wife.
Shay stroked the hair back from her face. Her eyes were closed, her breathing even, but he knew she was awake; had woken up a moment ago when he sat up in bed. She opened her eyes, smiled and he could feel the world brighten. His world revolved around her and he knew it. It had since the day he first saw her. Standing up to a court full of hyenas with her head held high.
“You’re too far away.” She murmured and he leaned in, grinning when she nipped his lip.
She grinned back.
I had taken a vow and I had broken it in only mere hours. There were oathbreakers and then there was me. I placed the palm of my hand on the stone. I could still see the blood on it. A chill ran down my spine, thinking of what could have happened. I could exist without her, as long as it meant that she lived. Even if I was not at her side.
“Do you mean it?” Micara asked, her voice soft, full of pain and joy all at the same time.
“Then yes. The answer is definitely yes.”
Shay laughed at her excitement but he could not deny his own joy of it. The pleasure of destroying this place, this castle his family had held through untold centuries, stone by bloody stone.
He laughed and it was a free sound. Free. Finally.
I had made a deal with a sorcerer to bond our souls. She was my bride and yet I had moved her, half asleep, wrapped only in the sheets from my bed and carrying but one knife to a whorehouse, because I could not protect her from my father’s wrath. His wrath at me because I was going to be more powerful than he could ever be. He still should not have moved against her. She was off limits and he should not have crossed that line.
They stood together watching the pile of rubble in front of them. The nobles watched them carefully, terrified of what the royal couple would do next. But there were no other acts of destruction.
“Have the stones cleared. I do not want anything left here. Dig out the very foundation stones and throw them all away. Then start building a new castle.” Micara’s voice rang out and men hastened to obey.
The queen’s word was law and preparations had already been made before this castle ever came down. Preparations had been made years ago in the hope that she would someday come back and help his destroy this place.
I would get her back. He feared my power when I was nothing but loyal. He thought he could control me now, after I had sent away my one reason for breathing, my only reason to obey. He was a fool and I would make him pay. I would destroy him, destroy this placed filled with his evil stone by stone. And I would wait until she came back to me.
“What do you want to do now?” Micara asked watching the city with him. The palace was gone, but the cliffs remained.
“I am not sure. What would you like to do?”
“Travel. Everywhere. See this kingdom that you have made me a queen of.”
“So be it. We will come back after our new castle is ready.”
She smiled, her fingers lacing with his. He gripped her hand tightly and they both knew it would be a long time before either of them let go.