First, I must ask forgiveness for the length of time between parts of this story. When one's life changes, it can turn a person more topsy-turvy then even she realizes. But Birdie is essential to my good mental health, and I believe that both of us are doing much better. It has been a long journey… just like “Gone”… but we are finding our ways.
To review for those (or all) who have forgotten, Birdie left Amphipolis to follow Rachelle to her home tribe in Abdera when that tribe needed Rach to be queen. True to her nature, Birdie just left to follow, despite the fact that she knew it was wrong to worry her family, and even Zephyr didn't approve.
Xena, Ephiny, Pony and others followed Birdie. Gabrielle remained in Amphipolis to be “in charge” and also because she is with child.
Birdie was bitten by a deadly Ochia snake, very close to her destination. Zephyr ran for Rach, and she managed to treat the worst effects of the bite in time. Xena arrived later and has assisted in Birdie's recovery.
So this begins… with Birdie's convalescence and healing.
Thanks always to VX, who reads it “raw”. And many thanks to Trace the Tyrant, my patient beta reader, for always making me better
Part 10 of The Birdie Series
I am Robin of the Warrior and the Bard….
The shore birds scattered in the morning's receding tide; their different calls accompanied by the swii-sssh sound of surf and the slaps of bare feet on wet sand.
Running with my Baba Xe was like running with a wild horse. Thus far I had kept stride but my internal monologue was shouting: breathe , pace, relax !! It would take many seasons to reach Baba Xe's effortlessness.
“Whoa, look it…” Baba turned on the speed toward a shape which was rolling in the wake. She captured a fist sized shell before the sea took it back again. It was colored a pure white with shiny brown markings.
Baba passed it to me-a silent question. “I think it is a nautalus, Baba.” Shell tutorials from Rach and Vix had made me somewhat literatein the treasures. “Good, the animal is gone.”
“Animal?” Baba waited further edification.
“Animals create these shells as their homes. Most of them are mud ugly and mean. We have eaten conch fritters?” My tall parent nodded. “Those guys are good to eat, but they do not care to be messed with. That is why they call them ‘fighting conchs'. Actually many shell animals are cannibals and just unpleasant.”
I returned the shell, “This Amazon tribe uses the nautalus as a major symbol. It's actually called a ‘chambered nautalus”.
Baba nodded and retrieved the shell. It was no burden to her and rode easily in her curled fingers.
“Is it the symbol which resembles a spiraling staircase?” she queried not breaking stride.
“Perhaps,” I had seen few staircases in my life. “the symbol is a ‘cutaway' version, so one can view the chambers. That's a nice shell, Baba; one doesn't find many which are of size and quality.”
“I can have something done with this then?”
“For Mama G?”
“Yes, and your Grandba as well. Push little Bird, it isn't much further now.”
Minotaur shite, so much for hiding the labor.
“ Tosh and Vix do beautiful work with shells. Take it to their ‘shell hut'.”
By the gods, gorgeous water skins at last.
“Not so fast; you will cramp,” Baba tapped the back of my head lightly, checking my rapacious slurping.
We turned back toward camp, stopping to clean the sand from our legs and feet in an Amazon made freshwater pool.
“Give it here,” That command was always the same. I relinquished my arm with a quiet sigh; this was a demand at least four times a day.
“Not bad, “ Baba ran her hands over the affected area of my arm.
“It doesn't hurt at all now, Baba—well, it hurts if I bang it on something, but it no longer throbs from the inside.”
“Good, “ my warrior parent thrust my arm under one of the reeds spilling clear water, “ As long as the skin is this pink, there is danger of re-injury and infection. That snake took quite a hunk from your arm and your life.”
Time to change the subject.
“I have learned much from this tribe, even in so short a visit, “ Baba regarded the system of bound reeds which carried water from one of several streams near the camp.
“It is a different environment, and I love it, but I also miss the mountains and cooler air.” My thirst was insatiable, and I felt I could never leave the “drink” reed which worked something like an artesian spring.
“We must bring your mother, “ Baba shoved me aside gently and drank deeply.
“Can it be soon, Baba?” Predicting the arched eyebrow, I presented my best wistful smile.
She ruffled my hair, “Your mother will be quite busy for a while, kiddo. But yes, we will come.”
Gabrielle looked around the field of flattened “newbies” , victims of their first staff practice. “Well, troops, you may know where improvement is needed.” She did not mention ‘ego' as an area out loud; that was apparent, since the guys were splayed about, hands on heads and backs. Two extra cocky kids placed hands on their ‘cockiness'. The bard cast a glance to her far left and noted that Cyrene was in the same position. The innkeeper winked at the bard.
Gabrielle found her gaze held by a handsome dark haired fellow with bright green eyes.
“You will improve, Hektor, I do mean that,” she extended a hand. He received it with a smile that could stop a horse.
“Staffing is much more about finesse than brute strength, isn't it, My Lady?”
“Very much so,” his queen agreed. “Staffing appears to be quite simple, when it fact, it takes as much practice or more than swordplay. A staff fight can go quite some time because it is NOT necessarily lethal.”
Hektor hopped up, “Well it sure doesHURT.” He grinned rubbing his legs and butt.
“Just keep practicing,” What a charmer, she thought.
He clicked his heels together with a little bow. “That I will do my lady. See you next week?”
“Yes,” Gabrielle's attention was taken by a group of four militia carrying a halved ale keg suspended on sticks by a long rope. She knew that a recent request had been filled and she was not at all certain that she really wanted to see the results.
“We got one, My Lady,” Atticus called, “it's a big fellow too; brace yourself.”
“What have you got the lads doing?” Cyrene strolled over from her crowd of bodies.
The big red headed man stopped, “It is nasty, my Ladies. Be cautious.”
Gabrielle peered into the deep bucket and turned away, her hands immediately covering her eyes, and Cyrene recognized the onset of hyperventilation.
“By the gods, what have you shown my girl?” The queen mother came to protect quickly.
Gabrielle cast a staying hand, “I asked them to, Mother C; they were under orders.”
Nonplussed, Cyrene took baby steps and dropped her eyes. She jumped back more quickly than Gabrielle had done.
“By Medusa's head herself, where did you find such a monster?” her voice took a Conqueror's edge. She whirled to her daughter, “And why would you ask?” The blue eyes softened as she detected tears on the bard's face, and she encircled a gentle arm to Gabrielle's waist, “Why would you ask, love?”
The small blonde's shoulders shook a moment longer. Then she composed herself, “Intuition.” Cyrene noted the bard shook tears from her eyes the same way her Xena did.
“Regarding yours, mine, and ours I suppose?”
“Ahhh, yeah.”The answer. Gabrielle rubbed her temples; lilting music moved in her.
“Mama, sweet Mama, Birrrdeee fine. No hurt Ma-ma.”
“Thank you sweet baby,” She returned the thoughts and turned to face Cyrene.
“I had a ‘feeling', Mother C,” she steadied her voice, “and then I was curious.”
The older woman shook her head and didn't quite say, “tsk, tsk, tsk,“ but her hand steered the bard's elbow. “Best take a GOOD look then, girl.”
As they approached, Atticus extended a halting hand, “Careful my Ladies, ‘e's a nasty one.” He drew an altered sword from his scabbard. It had been split at the top to make two deep points. He watched closely and then slammed the sword into the container.
“Got him pinned, take a look now.”
The snake was thin but strong; its body kept wrapping up the sword blade despite the sharp discomfort it must have caused.
“By the gods, the head on the beast, “Cyrene muttered.
Hektor had joined the group by now; he was a curious kid.
“AHH Medusa's head, that is a big ochia,” he said. “Where'd you find him?”
“Couple of candle marks south,” Atticus watched the captive carefully. “They are a bit scarce around here because of our cooler climate. Won't hear me complaining.”
“They were plentiful where I grew up, south of here,” Jacob offered, “They seek grass and sunlight.”
“This fellow was takin' the sun,” Atticus reported, “Shall we destroy the beast now, M'Lady?”
“Please. But be humane.” Only Gabrielle...
Hektor stepped forward, “I'll do it sir. You keep him pinned.” The young man retrieved his sword. “It is essential to cut off the head, “ he explained. “Otherwise, the freaky things'll regenerate.”
“Too much information,” the bard dug fists into her squeezed eyes once more.
“K' Ready?” Hektor locked eyes with his superior, “Pardon my giv'n the orders here, please.”
Atticus nodded. Cyrene noted sweat beads on the big man's forehead.
“Move your forked sword about two fingers' length behind the head.”
The snake was very angry; its heavy body thrashed rocking the bucket.
Cyrene kept her arm about Gabrielle, “Wish they would hurry up, “ she muttered, “The monster is givin' me chill bumps bigger than apples.”
Gabrielle was in worse shape; her head was ringing and her breath was coming faster, “I really , really, hate snakes.” She whispered.
But something else began to work its way into her mind. A simple humming tune in a child's voice, very like the resonation of a bell-soothing her nerves; again the baby comforted her mother. And the mother placed a gentle hand on her belly. “My sweet Singer.” The bard sent the thought and meditated on the fact that she and this child would know each other well before the girl was born.
Atticus's big paw on her shoulder sent the battling bard straight up in the air.
“We're done, M'Lady,” Gabrielle could feel the shaking in the man's hand. “'E is one snake that'll bother no one again. Think I should save the skin for the Conqueror? Might make a dashing belt or the likes.”
“That's ok, do as YOU like with it,” the queen tried not to obviously shudder. Xena did not like snakes either, but Gabrielle would not go near the warrior if she were wearing a snakeskin belt.
“Think I will slice ‘em up and feed the lads later on, “ Hektor held up the body by the tail blood dripping.
“By the gods, I don't care if ya dance with him, just get it outa my sight, “ Gabrielle heard the authority in Mother C.'s voice. She began walking her little blonde girl back to the fortress.
“I don't suppose you'd care to divulge what the hades that was all about?” Same authority.
Gabrielle blinked and tears streaked her cheeks, “Mother C, it's nothing personal. I am not completely certain why I wanted to see the snake. I think I know and if it comes clearer to me, I will tell you.”
“'Ave a feelin',” the ironed haired woman spoke as she accelerated their strides, “an' I think I don't want to know.”
No more words passed between the two women as they returned, but the walking embrace held tightly.
Caleb regarded the stars, “I ‘ope one of you folks up there's watchin' tonight, “ his silent prayer rose from his thoughts, “An' if it's not too much trouble, could one ‘o ya' please make the ale do its work quick.”
The gang was entering what Caleb classified as the “singing stage”. It was a bad sign and sound as not one of the grubby bearded guys could carry a tune. It would be much nicer as well if a few of the fellows took a bathe in the river, but Rankor had not done so, and they followed their leader.
“Lay low, son,” Cookie whispered as they bagged the dirty dishes.
“Wish I could collect the cursed ale mugs, as well,” Caleb kept an equally low tone.
“Ay, well ya' can wish in one hand andsh….”
“I remember, Cookie, ‘poo' is the polite term,” Caleb didn't look up but smiled when he heard the old man laugh.
“All right, ‘poo' in the other and see which one fills faster.” Cain was still chuckling. It was silenced as he heard the boy's sudden intake of breath.
A figure had appeared not realizing that whenever he approached, his son felt a chill, as if a large reptile had crossed his path.
“Lesh' see,” Rankor threw back his head and drained his tankard. Then he grabbed the thick wheat hair. Caleb rose with the tug knowing from experience that submission was his only chance.
“What uh yatink ‘bout a boy who kills ‘is mudder, Cook?”
The old man had risen as well. “I dunno any boy who's dun sech.” Caleb tried to warm his friend with his eyes. Cookie felt the gaze, but was in no mood.
“Why dis' un, Cook. ‘E killed ‘is mum.”
Cook stood nose to nose with Rankor. Caleb closed his eyes. “In my opinion, a newborn babe is the only critter on Gaia ‘ose without sin atall.”
“'ell I begs ta differ,” Caleb saw a bright light as the heavy wood and iron tankard crashed against his head.
“No, Cookie, plee….” His vision went dark as he saw the old man swing the stew ladle at Rankor.
Nausea had plagued me since sun up. I thought it might have been the heat of my morning run, but no amount of water eased the sickness. I couldn't eat for fear of my belly's reaction, but sipped tea. Rachelle, good Amazon healer she was, knew a tea to cure what ailed a person.
I left the hut taking the Baby Tide and my chakram with me. This had to be worked out, and doing so physically was the best cure. The beach provided all kinds of “foes”. I slashed the sea grass in front of me and mowed down the next clump with a sling of the chakram. Its return stung my hand. Out of practice, Bird.
Zephyr ran ahead of me to sniff out good ‘enemies' and to indulge in chasing the shore birds. I heard her sharp high bark; she sat beside a large tree, the drift had brought overnight. Perfect.
Every branch was Rankor's face, and I beheaded the man four times while again sending the chakram to cut the incoming waves. This time I caught it by pure instinct and no pain; it was an important skill to keep for a chakram if one did not want her own head shorn.
Salty perspiration dripped into my eyes and I ran a sweaty forearm across them.
“Here, Dodo,” I turned to catch a wet rag. It was soaked in spring water which helped the burning.
“Thanks,” I shut my eyes to clear the blood red, supremely focused mentality which took me when I used my weapons.
“You have extraordinary skills, Robin of Amphipolis,” the compliment made my cheeks burn.
”Don't be bashful, now,” seeing my face color, my young queen tossed her water skin.
“Thanks, “ a deep swig helped to further clear my head.
“Who will give you water when you engage that dark warrior?”gentle arms encircled my waist, “How will you manage it.?”
“I stink, Rach,” tried to break away.
“I know that,” a snicker. “You smell like a warrior. My consort is well chosen.”
Ok, now completely embarrassed.
“You will have to think of these things on your own for a while, Birdie.” She laid her head on my shoulder.
That bad? Yeeessss bird dog. Be strong and reliable; Posture straight and strong.
“I will Rach; trust me.”
She lifted her head, “Birdie, I DO trust you in just about every situation imaginable, save one.”
She needn't have said it.
“You are not very trustworthy when it comes to ME.”
I stiffened; even expected, that stung a bit.
She read my eyes, “No, Silly, What I mean is that I trust you with all of myself, my life, my secrets, my sorrows, but…… well… “
“My judgment is lacking with regard to your safety?” Time to mature and accept my responsibility.
“Yes, in a sense, though you have saved my life, I mean…”she sighed, an action which shuddered all her body.
I pulled her head to my shoulder again, “You mean that I must never do anything like honk off to Abdera without …. “ Now I was stuck.
“Yes. You know that I am safe here,” she grabbed my bangs to force eye contact, “you put yourself in far greater danger by your impulsivity than anything that could happen to me here.”
I lowered my head again. “I get it.”
“Good,” tears dampened my shoulder, “Birdie I love you more than my own life, but I have a duty to fulfill here and I want to do it WELL.”
“And as your consort, I must allow you to be a Queen, “I replied, finally understanding that this was not just about me. It was not just about any personal fears I had for Rachelle. It was about dedication to the greater good of our Amazons, and our sworn duty.
“Right,” Rach simply took my hand then and we walked the beach in silence.
Gabrielle stood on the fortress wall and watched the sun descend into distant mountains. She had parchment and nib, but words were not coming.
“Evening, My Lady.”
Hektor stood below. Gabrielle shook her head. Kid had a serious crush.
“Hello Hektor, pretty night, yes.”
“Shall I ascend the wall to join you?” Let's not be fresh, kiddo.
“Hektor,” she added firmness to her soft reply, “you do know that I am not at all available, don't you?”
He lowered his gaze, “I do, My Lady. I am also an incurable dreamer.”
That made her laugh, “I like dreamers, Hektor, I really do. So you and I can be dreamers and FRIENDS. ”
“Yes, My Lady.” He was cute, and undeniably charming.
“But for now, please slow down. Friendship takes time; you are young and you will learn.”
“Thank You My Lady.”
“And please keep foremost in your thinking that I belong to The Conqueror and to no one else. You are probably fortunate that she is not here right now.”
“I know, My Lady,” he was a little chagrined and needed to be.
“I will call you when I need companionship, ok? No more mooning at me in the moonlight.”
He laughed then, “Yes, My Lady. I understand. Your kindness is legendary and you have upheld your legend.”
Her answer was a nod.
“G'night, My Lady,” Hektor turned and trotted back towards the barracks.
She watched him go. He was pleasant on the eye and he made her laugh. She had been short on those pleasures for a time.
By the gods, was there an axe in his skull? Opening his eyes to the sunlight was agonizing; Caleb rolled over on his side, though the movement was excruciating; his head felt full of rushing boiling lava.
“Ah dereya are lad,” Cook's cool hand rested on the forehead, “I was fraid ya weren' comin' back.”
“How long?” Caleb mouthed through dusty mouth.
“'Ere,” a water skin with fresh river water helped.
”Not too much, lad. Ye'll be sick.” A river soaked rag was place behind his neck. It settled the discombobulation.
“Ye were out all night, lad. I was worried,” Caleb had always marveled at the gentleness of Cook's work worn hands... He squinted.
“Cook,” he tried to sit up but the hand held his chest, “Damnit Cook, did he give ya that eye?”
His friend's left eye was swollen almost shut and displayed colors of purple and light green.
“Aye, son. ‘Snuthin'.”
“By the GODS,” but Caleb could not match his movements with his anger.
“I tol' ya, wuznuthin', lad. Now lay back down or does I hafta crown ya?” The old man managed a chuckle.
The boy was forced to obey, “I tol' ya I could fight my own battles now, Cook.”
“Ya can' fight much of a batt'le if ya's knocked out cold, lad,” The hand pushed him back again; the other straightened a rough made pillow. “Just rest, son. I got ya in the coolest spot and will return to chekya.”
Caleb laid back. As soon as his head cleared he would ponder revenge. That Rankor had even struck the beloved and defenseless old man was the last straw beyond on a lifetime of straws. Rankor would be accountable, even if it cost Caleb his own life.
The Amazon tribe had ceased their wild dancing, another shared that custom with their forest sisters. The thought wandered into my brain as I tugged on a scratchy feather at my neck. They also shared the “feather” thing unfortunately, just different birds. The meeting of our tribes would be educational.
“And now the Amazons by the Sea and the Amazons of the Forest will join in a bond that cannot be severed.” Vix had a good formal ceremony voice- wandering thoughts.
There was a sharp nudge in my ribs. “I know these things can drone on a bit, Bird, but you best heed every word,” Baba whispered without moving her lips. Remarkable, the practice of many ceremonies I decided.
“Thanks, Baba,” I found I had the talent as well. Good.
Just in time- energy filled the camp ring that was familiar to me.
“In deed, this historic day among my Amazons; I am pleased.” Artemis was the only woman, or man, or anyone to make my Baba Xe seem comparatively small in size. Note I did not say presence; Baba Xe could hold her own with anyone in that category. Bird, mind wandering again!
“The chosen two -step forward please.”
That would be me, right? Rachelle locked eyes with me from the opposite side of the ring. Yes.
I walked to meet my queen in the center with the goddess.
Artemis took my right hand and Rachelle's as well. She folded them within her hands like an ironwood shelter. I could feel the heat of the immortal.
“ My sisters , The Amazon world is full of vows and traditions, but none are greater than ‘Queen and Consort'” the goddess's voice was thunder. “Do you both understand this bond? It means that not only are you true and faithful to each other, but also that your respective tribes must keep the same promises. This is a great responsibility. Even though you are young, can you say that you will guard this bond- to each other, and to your tribes, forever and always... even to death?”
“I will do so as my life's work, My Lady Artemis, always and forever, “Granite green eyes pierced mine. I swallowed.
The goddess then chuckled- unexpected.
“Robin of Amphipolis, we are all only TOO aware of your devotion. Still, I ask the question, will you, as Rachelle's consort, guard the bond to her and to your tribes, forever and always, even to death?”
“Yes, My Lady Artemis, “ I replied steadily.
“ Then the symbols of bondage.”
Rachelle stepped forward and draped my neck with thin woven leather. I looked down.
“It is sting ray leather, “ she said, “The finest and strongest material we know of.”
Hanging from the leather was a coin; it was the same image of the boy on the dolphin as the one in my ear, but larger. Oh gods this was embarrassing; I had nothing to give.
A loud cough brought my gaze to Baba Xe; she winked. There was one pocket in the dress buckskins. Ah ha.
I draped my love, my queen, in the silver chain and Conqueror's coin. Artemis lifted the chain, “I recognize this as a chain of my own making. It is indestructible.”
“Thank you My Lady, “we said in chorus. I sent another thanks to my Baba and to Artemis for the fashioned chain in my pocket.
Artemis took our hands again, “now the final seal.” She handed me her dagger; I was warrior. Artemis's weapon was heavily ornate, yet very light. Gently I sliced across Rach's hand until a thin line of blood appeared. She smiled at me; it didn't hurt. I cut my own a bit deeper; it seemed proper to do so.
The goddess pressed our bleeding hands together, first enfolding them in her own hands. “Now declare your bond,“ she whispered , “You need not make a sound.”
And so we stood, hands raised high, Queen and Consort, tall and proud, our bloods blended with one another's and thereby our tribes. We met the eyes of each person in attendance.
There were yelps , drumming, and applause from the tribe. A glance at Baba Xe revealed tears running down her strong features. Then I realized my eyes were flooded as well.
“Mama G, “ I whispered, “ I hope that you can see.”
Anyone passing by would not have noticed the bard sitting on the fortress wall, in lotus position, eyes closed.
In a moment she opened her emerald eyes to release diamond tears, like
Star shine on her cheeks.
This little miracle never failed to startle her slightly. The child made inquiry when she sensed emotion in her mother.
“No, Sweet Singer, Mama isn't sad; Mama is proud.”
“Umhum, and of your Baba Xe, as well.”
“Want to see them.”
Gabrielle smiled as she sensed a headstrong timbre to the baby's tone.
“Be patient, little one, you will see them soon.”
“Want to see them NOW.”
The bard's melodic chuckle sailed upward to dance with the stars.
“You are in a good mood,” The tall dark haired beauty addressed the stars, “I am too. You would have been so proud of our Birdie, Gabrielle. Something was just busting my gut, and I realized that it was pride, such pride in our little Birdie. It was a good feeling.”
Her head dropped, eyeing the flickering illumination the moon gave to gentle waves.
“You would love the sea, my love; we must come.” Cobalt sea eyes released tears on the high cheekbones. “I dread this separation for Birdie, Gabrielle. You and I have not been separated six moons ever… Well,” the warrior drew sand patterns with a toe, “Well, except for when I ‘died'.” She sighed, “Wish I hadn't brought that up.”
Now she would have to run to shed the sudden abyss in her gut. Long easy strides began to pass sand gaining momentum.
“I am sorry,” the warrior thought as she increased her speed, “You, Gabrielle will be the one to teach Birdie about inner strength. I have done fair enough with her warrior skills. But what comes will need your expertise. How to keep a broken heart functioning. That is your area.”
Crabs scuttled, and even a sea turtle sensed the power of the approaching being, and she flippered herself back into the shallow water to hide from the oncoming threat.
Hades was loaded; Baba and the other Amazons had bid their farewells; I wished this didn't have to be so public. But what difference would it have made..
Rachelle's fingers lifted my chin to meet my streaming eyes. Her tears were a graceful water cascade from granite rocks. She had such royal poise, and I struggled to keep my own.
Her fingers travelled down the lanyard which held the dolphin coin, and she examined it,
“This is a forever thing, you know,” she chuckled, “there may come a day when you look at this coin and think, ‘what in hades came over me?'”
I reached for the Conqueror coin on its stunning chain. “You will think that long before I do…” big sigh, “You know what I am capable of.”
Her hand chucked my head up firmly, “Robin of Amphipolis, you made me a promise…”
“And I will keep it,” teetering dangerously near a very unwarriorish sloshy crying fit. “I will keep to it, My Lady Queen, though there will be times it feels unbearable. Like now.”
Her arms came around my neck then and we hugged so hard, I fancied feeling our hearts beating together.
“We will be ok, Birdie,” she whispered, “I know that even though this…. Hurts…” she hid an unqueenly sob in my shoulder.
“My parents have an odd trick, “ I whispered. “When they are apart, they look at the moon every night, and somehow, Artemis allows them to share thoughts. They don't think that I know, but I have put it together over time.”
“I will try it tonight,” Rach pulled away and assumed her royal continence.
“As shall I,” carefully level your gaze, Consort.
Artemis help me, it was time. She kept hold of my hand as I swung up onto my big horse. She released my hand and let hers grip my leg. “You take care,” she squeezed my leg hard, “By the gods Birdie, if you do anything stupid, I promise you will see stars, and not in the sky.”
I leaned down and kissed her hand gently, “I promise, My Lady.”
One more squeeze to my leg, “I love you,” she sounded hoarse.
“And I love you,” I was picking up a little bit of strength, “Look at the moon, Rach.”
“I will. Now Go. Go My Dearest Love, My Birdie…”
Hades obeyed the command without my urging. The black horse ran as if Artemis herself sat his back in command. It was just as well, because I rode blind, one hand clutched to my breast as if I could keep my heart from breaking sending shards through my chest.. It did not help. After a moment's hard gallop, I looked back to the Amazon camp.
But Rachelle was gone.
That night the stars heard a family apart, singing to comfort one another. Artemis did bless her own. Singer began, her sweet singing bowl voice sang to her mother alone, as she sat on the fortress wall walkway.
Can you hear me?
‘Tis your baby deep inside.
Goddess blessed, I am to have you
As my keeper and my guide.
Singer child, you are the blessing
You can't know the love I feel..
For your songs and for your sweetness
This our bond forever sealed.
Rachelle, Rach, I am your consort
And I shall not let you down
Know that I will wait forever
To be with you and serve your crown.
Artemis, I don't pray often
Here me now; a warrior kneels.
Guard my family through this distance
Trust to You, this time I yield.
(To be continued.) special thanks to VX and Trace the Tyrant) I love you two.
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