Private Tales Ash and Iron

A private roleplay only for those invited by the first writer

Maeve

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Maeve bit down on her bottom lip as her joy suddenly changed to nerves. It had never bothered her in the past whether anyone had liked what she made or even, really, what she had done. Sure, she might have liked them to be proud at a particularly good hunt but when people had joked of her lack of skills in a certain area she had been able to brush it off easy enough. But as he raised a macaroon to his lips to take a bite everything tightened in her gut: she desperately wanted him to like what she made.

She was gripping the plate so tightly it nearly snapped and Ravana gently took it from her hands with a soothing rub on her back.

"It's just one of those things, like we talked about," she whispered and guided the younger woman to a stool which she sat down on heavily. Mates. She'd tentatively asked the other women what it meant and whilst they'd been reluctant at first they'd slowly begun to give her a lesson which she assumed all fae were given when they were five. It had been rather humiliating but useful and it stopped her freaking out about how important a macaroon suddenly was to her.
 
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Lorcán

The Autumn Prince
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He didn't know whether to find the nervousness uncomfortable or slightly adorable, but he opted for the latter and smiled as he bit into the macaroon with a throaty groan of approval. He shoved the rest of it into his mouth, his cheeks bulging as he grinned and muffled something unintelligible.

"Best I've tasted." he clarified after he swallowed and licked the sweet crumbs from his lips with a smirk to Cindi who was giving him a slight glare.

Lorcán picked up Ravana's whisper and his gaze narrowed as he turned, watching the puca mollify Maeve. He rubbed awkwardly on the back of his neck and cleared his throat, looking between the three females.. "You uh.. Talked about it?.." he asked, a sudden burst of anger already quelled by anxiety. He'd wanted to be the one to explain it to her, but honestly he'd been uncertain of how to approach it with her for fear of frightening her off.

His eyes settled on Mae in silent question. Are you alright....with everything?...
 
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Maeve

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"It's... It's a lot to take in."

Cindi and Ravana seemed to vanish with quickly murmured goodbyes and excuses of needing to see to other chores. The kitchen door snicked quietly shut behind them leaving the pair alone. Maeve couldn't meet his gaze but she slowly stretched out one leg and carefully pushed the stool opposite out so that he could take a seat. Baking had given her time to think through some things but it hadn't necessarily given her the time to find the answers to half of those thoughts. The girls had filled in the... mechanics but there was a lot still... there was a lot still she needed to hear from him.

"Don't be mad with them, Mercutio was the one that told me," she rubbed subconsciously at the dark bruises on her wrists which glimmered with the faint sunlight as her body tried to heal itself. "They just gave me the..." her nose scrunched up. "Biology lesson," she supposed that was what it was. The mechanics of how their souls were bonded and the impact it could have upon her emotions, the way she acted. With a sigh she met his gaze.

"Were you going to tell me?"
 
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Lorcán

The Autumn Prince
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Lorcán watched the two females leave and gave a silent nod in response to Maeve's words as he took a seat on the stool and leaned forward to brace his elbows on his knees, his fingers lacing together.

"It's a lot for me too." he agreed gently. The change had hit him like an avalanche, he could only imagine how it must have been for her when she had even more change to deal with than he did. Much more. He sighed deeply at the mention of Mercutio and he let his head fall below his shoulders, shadows creeping up his back and pouring over his shoulders and down his arms to coil around his hands, waiting to be used.

"I'm not mad at them." he rumbled darkly, a muscle feathering in his jaw as he considered how the conversation between Mercutio and Maeve must have gone, how frightened and confused she must have been when he'd been hurting her to get to him.

Her question caused his brow to furrow slightly. Was he going to tell her?.. "I.. I think so. You have a right to know, and a right to choose whether to accept it or not. I was just afraid you'd reject it. Given everything.." he frowned and looked down again.

"I'm sorry. I should've told you about it the moment I knew, I was just.." A coward. He sighed.
 
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Maeve

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A single nod.

It wasn't anger or fear that had her brows creasing together like so but rather, deep, contemplative thought. She neatly slotted his answer into several of her questions and erased several more that would have needed to be asked if he had answered in a different way. She took a breath and smoothed her hands out on the tops of her thighs as she worked up the courage to ask her next question.

"When did you know?" her voice was barely above a whisper and her eyes searched his face for the answer before he could even say it out loud.
 
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Lorcán

The Autumn Prince
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His dark gaze rose to meet hers as she asked her next question, and he swallowed uncertainly before taking a breath and answering. "The day I found you?.." he rumbled quietly and squeezed his hands together. "I suspected when I first saw you, but I knew when I carried you into the air. You clung on to me and I felt it. That need to protect you, the..possessiveness. I tried to deny it by frightening you but when I felt the fear I'd caused. It hurt me. You were sobbing against me and pleading with me and I had never felt so sorry in my entire life." he explained and dropped his head, running his fingers into his hair.

"I should have told you then but you hated me, you'd have rejected it, and I thought I'd die anyway...I just, wanted to be with you. I wanted to be myself around you and hope that you wouldn't hate who I am. I'm not the person my father makes me be, or who his people and armies think I am, who you thought I was. I've never known that so surely as I do now. We can have peace here, Mae. But my father can never, ever find out about you, or your gifts." he looked up at her with worry on his face.
 
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Maeve

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Her nails dug into the flesh of her thighs.

That long?

She had suspected he'd known when she had told him to go and that had torn her up enough inside, especially when she had thought she would die in there. But that he had known right back then, when she had hated him, when she had dreamed of nothing but ending his life and getting on with her own? It made her heart ache. The pain she must have caused him... Mae swallowed and ran a jerky hand through her hair. She opened her mouth to apologise for how she had been back then, how she had treated him, when he continued on in that frantic, nervous manner he seemed to develop when talking about his fear of her getting hurt. She could feel it, rising in him like a tide, but the shadows that were beginning to grow confirmed her thoughts. Patiently. she waited for him to finish and when he was done she quietly slid from her stool and took the one step that would cover the small gap between them.

She slid into his lap in one smooth movement.

"We'll figure your father out another time," because even if this island was paradise she wouldn't be able to stay cooped up in it. If she thought she couldn't leave it would become a prison and in turn she would come to hate it. "I just want to think about... us, right now." she cupped his cheek and turned his face towards her. "Please?"
 
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Lorcán

The Autumn Prince
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He had half expected her to be angry at him for not mentioning it sooner, but when she slipped onto his lap his shoulders sagged with relief and his arms looped around her, a hand kneading at her waist. His lips curled at her answer and he gave a quick nod. How he wished he could simply cast any thought of his father aside, if only it were that simple. It seemed to be the moment he felt happy in life, his father would be waiting there to crush it out of him. He had already done the most terrible thing that he could think of to hurt him, but hurting his mate would have been the worst possible thing the King could do to him.

He'd try. And so he smiled up at her and leaned to capture her lips with his own. "Alright." he rumbled at her, slowly starting to feel more settled and suddenly realising that he was still absolutely covered in flour.

"How bout I get out of this flour and show you Endora?.." his brow quirked.
 
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Maeve

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She laughed breathlessly against his lips but didn't open her eyes and respond straight away. Instead she allowed herself to bask in the feeling of his kiss and the warmth of his arms wrapped around her. It all felt so right. The thought unnerved her and made her feel giddy all at the same time. That this great cosmic thing could exist between them and had before they had spent any time together.... it was daunting. Could this ever live up to the dream of soulmates that humans had? She supposed they would have lifetimes to answer it. Finally she opened her eyes to glance down at the state he was in.

"Are you asking me out on a date?" Her eyebrows rose into her hairline but her eyes held a daring glint and her smile was even worse.
 
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Lorcán

The Autumn Prince
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He let out a husky laugh, his cheeks dimpling and a sparkle of amusement in his eyes as he grazed his nose against hers. "That depends. Are you saying yes?..I have a reputation to uphold, I can't have rumours spreading that my offer of a date was rejected now, can I?" he mused and sighed as he leaned back.

"I mean there are countless others who would happily take your place if you diiid say no.." he toyed for a moment, his lips twisting as he shrugged at her.

"Then again, they wouldn't be you. So yes, Maeve, Daughter of the Ilcinki Tribe, I'm asking you if you'll do me the honour of allowing me to court you." he asked dramatically, though his smile was nothing if not genuine.
 
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Maeve

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Mae thought she might get whiplash with how quickly her moods shifted. From playful amusement to fiery jealousy and rage that made her draw a sharp in take of breath, before his words took the rug from out beneath her feet with such sweet serenity that she was surprised - once she had recovered - she hadn't literally swooned. The first few months of adjusting were choppy, Cindi had said. Mae wondered if the pucá had been downplaying just how "choppy" it was going to be. She had said the men were always worse and she pitied anyone who Lorcán chose to set his sights on when his own moods shifted.

"I suppose," Maeve sniffed nonchalantly before breaking out into a smile so bright it would have made the sun weep. She reluctantly slid off his lap. "Just not in anything Cindi ever lays out for me again," she plucked at the silk nightdress and shook her head in amusement before heading to the door.

"I think she might faint if I ask her for walking boots."
 
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Lorcán

The Autumn Prince
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"You suppose?.." he laughed under his breath and grimaced. "Well, that stings a little." he growled quietly, his hand on his chest as though he'd been wounded, but it was nothing that her smile couldn't heal in an instant. He stared up at her in awe as she stood, letting himself feel that bond they shared and everything that came with it. It was, admittedly, more than he had ever felt at any one time in his life, but he let it roll over him like a warm Summer breeze and he accepted it. He accepted the joy, the rage, the fear, the possessiveness, the lust and the heart thundering love he felt. Everything had it's proper place, and he was sure it was something he could better manage in time.

His lips curled and his brow arched in question.. "Oh? Not to your taste, Princess?.." he asked playfully. "Whether it's walking boots, silky pyjamas or a suit of armour, whatever you need is yours. Just ask it and you'll have it." he assured as he stood to stretch and follow her, leaving a trail of floury footsteps in his wake.
 
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Maeve

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Just ask it and you'll have it... Mae couldn't help the tiny flare of mischief that began to grow at the back of her mind. Later. She'd ask the girls for what she wanted later.

On the walk back to the room Maeve was far more conscious of there being eyes on them both. Whenever she turned to look at an ajar door or into an apparently empty room she saw nobody but she could feel them there. Watching, whispering, making the hairs on the back of her neck stand up. She slid her hand into his and quickened their pace. Of course she knew her arrival was probably the source of some gossip; a girl near bleeding to death, the flash of light which Cindi had said had been seen for miles, the fact their Prince had stayed with her... The puca hadn't wanted to talk too much about Lorcan's state in the past few months but from reading between the lines she gathered he hadn't been in good shape.

She let out a relieved breath when they were back in the peace of his suite.

The wardrobe doors were flung open to show them almost bursting with different outfits and Mae groaned.

"You had happened to have clothes in my size lying around?" she wandered over to the doors and fingered the different garments.
 
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Lorcán

The Autumn Prince
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The feeling of having eyes on him wasn't anything new, it was something he'd been used to for most of his life, but these eyes here felt safe. They weren't spying on him, reporting his movements to his father, they weren't judging him or sneering from the shadows. He hadn't considered that it would be something Maeve would consider strange.

He glanced down as she wove their fingers together, his lips twitching as he squeezed affectionately at her small hand. Such little things would take some getting used to, but he felt his chest swell just a little more each time she did something that surprised him.

Lorcán grinned and lifted a towel from the ornate dresser, dipping it into the water basin and wringing it out before cleaning the flour from his skin with it. "I suppose Fae magick will take some getting used to for you." he mused. "This is your home too. Fill it with whatever you please. I want you to be comfortable here." he told her, tossing the towel into the basin which was suddenly replaced by a tray with two glasses and a jug of wine with fresh grapes and cheeses. He poured two glasses and offered one to her with a small smile.
 
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Maeve

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"I don't think fae would consider what I'm used to... good enough," she spoke almost to herself as she pulled out one of the outfits stuffed into the wardrobe and held it up in front of her. The dress looked as though it were made of crushed stars and glinted every time it move. She quickly put it back in the wardrobe. The scraps of leather and fur that her people had used for clothing were considered barbaric even by other human standards from what she had learnt during her time with Vivienne. Mercutio had laughed in her face how primitive they had all been on her isle.

"I don't want to embarrass you," she sighed and pulled out a pair of trousers that tapered at the ankles and sat loosely on the hips. The matching top would expose some of her stomach but it looked comfortable and she could just about handle the subtle beading that decorated it. She pulled it on hurriedly before she could change her mind.
 
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Lorcán

The Autumn Prince
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Good enough?…. Embarrass?…..

Lorcán blinked at her, dumbstruck that she could even think such a thing. Even if he did care what people thought of him, she was the most beautiful thing he’d ever laid eyes upon. If anything, he was used to being an embarrassment, and so he couldn’t help but let out a breathy laugh at the irony of it.

“Mae, nothing about you could embarrass me. I’m not worthy of you on your worst day. I don’t care what you wear, I care that you’re here, and trust me…There isn’t a soul on this island who won’t love you.” He smiled, setting the cups down and reaching to tilt her face to his with a knuckle.

“You’re perfect.”
 
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Maeve

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Maeve swallowed the lump that had formed in her throat as she gazed up into his eyes. Would the feeling of butterflies ever go away when he touched her or looked at her in that way? Would his words ever not make her knees weak and tears spring to her eyes like he had just recited the sweetest poetry to her? She felt like a hormonal teenager all over again. Before she did actually break down in tears she stepped out of his grip and quickly grabbed the glasses he had set down, pushing his into his hands whilst holding her own to her chest tightly.

"Perfect sounds like an awful lot of work," she smiled faintly then took a sip of her wine. "Is this a long walk?" Mae asked casually, changing the topic and denying to herself how much what his people thought of her did matter. After all, these weren't just subjects of the Autumn Court. They were people who had chosen to follow him to be safe from the Erlking and politics beyond the boundaries of this place. It made them a family in an odd way.
 
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Lorcán

The Autumn Prince
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His smile only widened as he stared down at her, his eyes wandering those star-speckled tattoos that she wore so much more beautifully than the night sky. He sighed as she stepped away from him, pushing down the instant itch that came with her being outside of his embrace. It was something else he was going to have to get used to, and though the last thing he wanted to do was give her space, he knew he'd have to, given how fiercely independent she was. It was going to be a very difficult balance to maintain..

He took the wine with a gentle frown. "Work? But you already do it so effortlessly." he reached his fingertips to her cheek, capturing a tress of crimson hair to push it behind her pointed ear. "You don't need to try to impress anybody. I want you to be comfortable and.. happy, here. This is our place for peace.." he sighed, his knuckles grazing her cheek as he dropped his hand and took a sip of his wine.

"Walk?.. Who said anything about walking?" he grinned with a playful wink over the rim of his glass, shadow gathering at his back and growing thicker until his large, raven wings shuffled behind him.
 
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Maeve

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Our place...

His words were as much of a caress as his touch against her cheek and she closed her eyes with a sigh. She could feel how much this place was his home and she would have given anything to feel the same. It will take time, Cindi's soothing words floated back to her after she had confessed her fears to the sisters. Bonds could snap into place before a couple even truly knew one another and the best thing, they had recommended, was to not rush things. Courting was a good place to start and it eased the pressure of the bond from her shoulders. When he mentioned not walking she opened her eyes and watched with a full heart as those wings formed. How many nights had she seen them in her dreams?

Suddenly her face crumpled.

"I lost your feather," her fingers went to her hair and then fell away as the memory of Mercutio ripping it from her braid flickered across her mind.
 
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Lorcán

The Autumn Prince
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There was a brief shadow in his eyes as he felt a subtle wave of apprehension, but it wasn't his. He winced slightly and forced himself to take a step back from her. It was going to take some considerable effort not to crowd her, not to take things too fast. If only she could understand.. He'd been alive for over four hundred years and had long since given up on the likelihood of him finding his mate. That she'd been human had made the chances even slimmer and yet, here she was, and he'd never truly understood how that bond felt until now.

The second her face crumpled he had to stop himself stepping in close to her again, his body tense. He'd never realised how much he could feel in a single second as he did since he'd found her. He'd been ready to rip out the throat of whomever had caused that pain in her expression when she told him what had bothered her. He let out a breath, his chest aching as he knew who she'd thought about.

"Oh.." he sighed and forced a smile as he reached to take her hand, holding her palm upward. His wings ruffled, a breeze of magic threading through the air before the conjured feather appeared from black smoke on her outstretched hand.. "There." he smirked. That it'd meant anything to her at all caused his tension to ease and his gaze to soften on her face.

"Ready?" his lips curled.
 
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Maeve

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"Yes."

Her fingers tenderly ran over the fine edge of the feather and a small smile softened the fear, worry and pain that had knitted her brows together. Funny, losing the feather had been more upsetting to her than any of the lashes or bruises she'd received. She savoured the silky texture for just a minute more and then tied it back into her hair where it belonged.

"Yes, let's go," she raised her eyes to his and her smile deepened. There was a part of her that wanted to show him those golden wings she'd managed to conjure, a part of her that wanted to fly alongside him and not in his arms, but even the thought of it exhausted her. Another day. But that didn't mean she couldn't have fun now. The darkening of her smile was all the warning she gave him before she bolted to the large, rail-less terrace beyond the wide open glass doors. Then, like she'd done all those months ago over the edge of the waterfall, Maeve launched herself off the edge with a loud hollering whoop.
 
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Lorcán

The Autumn Prince
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Lorcán's brow slowly rose as he read the warning in that mischievous smile, and he turned quickly to watch her run at the balcony. He felt his heart leap, but it didn't stop him from laughing as he sprinted after her and dove into the air after her.

It was a long enough drop that they'd fall for a while, passed flocks of cranes and through the spray of the waterfalls that roared into the rocks and lakes below. He felt his soul breathe as they fell, his roguish grin playful and wide as he tucked his wings before letting them out as he swooped her into his arms and carried her over the lakes with a laugh.

"From a fear of heights to death jumps.. Where has my Princess gone?.." he mused, his heart thundering against her as he held her tightly to his chest, flying low enough that her toes could glide along the crystalline water's surface.

Around one side of the lakes, the growing city was bustling with music and cheer as they set up for a celebratory festival. The abundance of blossoms cast their petals into the breeze like an endless snow and the sky above was a myriad of pinks and lilacs.

"That's Azora.." he pointed toward the city.

Endora.jpg
 
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Maeve

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There was never any doubt in her mind that Lorcán would let her fall. It took all the fear out of heights she had had when she was near him and allowed her instead to just enjoy the freeing sensation of falling through the air. Cool spray splashed against her limbs and the wind whipped the hair back from her face. She could almost remember the dream where she had flown herself when she was hurtling down towards the approaching lakes. The air rushed out of her when he finally did catch her and she struggled to breathe in again through laughing so hard. The exhilaration of it all made her heart full to bursting.

"It's the pointed ears,"
she explained as seriously as a person could when they were grinning like a maniac and giving tiny noises of utter delight as they dipped their toes in the lake below them. "I'm basically a bat," she looped her arms around his neck and grazed her lips along his jaw before turning her sights once more to the world they swept through. It was impossible to take it all in at once especially at speed but there was nothing she wanted more than to drink down the sights like a man dying of thirst. Awe, wonder, joy. They all floated through that star-studded link even as she clicked her tongue playfully and said.

"I thought faeries lived under mushrooms and in trees?"
 
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Lorcán

The Autumn Prince
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There wasn't a sound more exhilarating to him than those she made in her joy and excitement. He drank her laughter in deep, letting it sink into his bones and soothe the tension from his muscles. She was his cure, he was certain, and nothing would be the same again...So long as he kept her.

His smile caused his jaw to ache, her lips grazing across its stubble causing his fingers to tighten their grip against her skin and a tremble of a breath to spill from his lips. His wings tilted through the air, weaving them this way and that through the pillars of rock and up and over waterfalls, the ruffled water below sparkling in the sunlight.

"Some do.." he laughed, carrying her toward the silver forest, its trees looking almost frosted despite the warmth in the air. "Fae are a race of many different species. I am Duanann, or as some would call us, High Fae. But, below us, are countless sorts of lesser faerie folk, nymphs and sprites and pixies, and some far more terrible." he smirked.
 
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Maeve

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"Like the... puca?" she said the word slowly as she tried to recall how it was pronounced. Were there stranger things than the two sisters? She bit her lip thinking of it. Her reaction hadn't been the best to Cindi and Ravanna though, she reasoned with herself, it hadn't perhaps been the best time to introduce her to more fae. Her skin still crawled over the memory of the summer fae with their odd tree-bark skin. How would she know which ones were terrible and which were not? Which to trust and which to stay away from?

The silver forest distracted her momentarily from the dark thoughts and she reached out to snatch at one of the curious leaves that glinted like silver. She twirled it in her fingers and then tucked it into his hair with a grin.

"How did you convince your father to give you this place?" She would never have given up something so beautiful. What was the rest of the autumn court like if this was something to be thrown away?
 
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