It was the fifth knife that Wes had thrown without success towards the bull’s-eye target. He normally had no trouble, and often would go outside to “practice” and impress the girls at the same time. That had all changed, and he was glad that on this drizzly day he had no audience.
Orzan was gone, he and Lyssa had killed him with the Everspell that was inside Lyssa and he had helped her do that. Orzan had ruled the Fae world with fear and controlled the darker side of Avalon, but the Rebels had destroyed that, and a new order was taking place. The world of Fae was changing, but Wes wasn’t changing with it.
“Wes!” Lizzi’s voice rang through the mist that had turned to a steady drizzle. “Elijah made chicken and potatoes. Hurry up or there won’t be any left!”
“Coming!” he replied as he pried loose the last of knives from his failed attempts to hit the target. His mind was elsewhere, and he couldn’t get over the thought of Lyssa.
She was different, but of course she was different to him, he had read her diary. He didn’t know that’s what it was, until it was too late.
He couldn’t help but smile remembering the look on her face when she found out—if only she knew what he was really thinking. She was an amazing person that did amazing things in a world she didn’t know she belonged to. Wes wasn’t sure if he could be as brave as she was. She loved her father very much, and that’s what drove her to do what she did. Wes never had the chance to know his family because they along with his village, was destroyed by Drakes—the fire people.
“If you get sick, don’t blame me,” Lizzi said uncovering a plate of chicken and potatoes mixed with carrots. “I’m not taking care of you if you do, and you are packing your own things,” Lizzi sat across from him with a plate of chocolate cookies in front of her.
Wes shoved in a spoonful of potatoes into his mouth. They had an even amount of butter and salt on them that were delicious. Elijah could take the simplest of ingredients and make them spectacular.
“I don’t have many things.” Wes began to cut up his chicken as he felt Lizzi’s eyes on him.
“I can’t believe you didn’t go to the Ivory Shore where all the girls went.” Lizzi munched on a cookie.
When Orzan’s power dissolved, the Rebels came out of their hiding and for their brave efforts were given the luxury of making a future for themselves. Some went to schools, other realms, or joined the sentryship. Sentries were the guardians of the Fae world. Their duties were centuries old, but still remained the same.
“I can’t believe you ate all of those cookies,” Wes put his fork down and let out a satisfying belch.
“Yeah, well, they were good.” Lizzi got up and took my plate and headed towards the kitchen.
He held his glass and stared into the fire.
“Honestly, Wes,” Lizzi said as she stopped in the blackened doorway. “We are the last ones to be here, and I’m leaving in a week for Avalon. I’m going to be a clothing designer and one day work at Vine, and,” she looked at me with her sympathetic eyes. “We have to move on—all of us. The Rebels are no more.”
Wes went to bed that night with Lizzi’s words echoing in his head. The Rebels were gone because the threat of Orzan was gone, but what was he going to do now? He had never thought beyond that, and now he had to. For a moment, Wes wished that the threat of Orzan still plagued them—at least he knew what he had to do. It was simple: fight, practice fighting, and make a strong resistance. Wes thrived on being assigned missions that were dangerous and impressing the rest of the Faes with the marvels of his actions. But that audience was gone, and he stood in an empty theater. Lizzi stayed as long as she did for him, and he couldn’t postpone her plans anymore. He had to make a decision to not only give him a direction, but to give Lizzi peace of mind.
“Deravon said you can join him at the palace as a sentry there.” Elijah suggested as he put pots and pans carefully into wood crates. “He said you could stay with him in his apartment for a while until you found something.”
“A mock sentry?” He questioned with raised eyebrows. “I’ve been a Rebel for three years, and now you’re suggesting that I guard a palace that harmless tourists visit by the thousands every year?” He flicked at a crumb on the table shooting it through the air to the floor.
“It’s not just keeping tourists in order, it’s an honor to keep a tradition living and breathing in our world,” Elijah was a giant, but with his rounded features and gentle mannerisms, he was a likeable one. “Look at me,” he said with opened arms and a smile. “I’m going to be a pastry chef. Now, there’s a miracle. I’ll be the only giant in the school, and I plan on opening my own shop one day.”
I smiled. “You’ll be a good one, Elijah,”
He nailed the lid to the crate that contained his precious pots and pans, and then handed the hammer back to me. “You my young Fae have a world of opportunities waiting for you. You have to let the past go and move on, and the way I see it,” he said picking up the crate that would take two strong Fae to carry, “Not only do many tourist visit the palace every year, but there are many young, lovely female Faes included in that bunch. Trust me, ladies love to be entertained by heroes,” he said with a wink.
Just on that alone would have encouraged him to be a mock sentry. But something had changed, something he never wanted to had.
Wes stood in the training yard where all the young Rebels would perfect their abilities. He closed his eyes and remembered the day Lyssa had spotted him there through the crowd of onlookers. He was using a sword—his favorite weapon. He knew she hadn’t planned on seeing him, but she did, and he took the advantage to impress her. But Lyssa wasn’t impressed. Of course she wasn’t, because she wasn’t like the other Fae girls Wes usually went for. Lyssa was different, and that different confused and intrigued him at the same time.
A sudden breeze rushed past him as water fell from the leaves of the trees it had clung to. Wes opened his eyes to a bright, flickering light through the thick vegetation. It was just about summer and the forest was at its fullest. The light traveled quickly and fluidly around and under tree limbs until it faded and someone stood among the foliage staring at him.
Wes stood frozen in awe at the delicate looking woman with long, red-gold hair. “Zoey?” He questioned her appearance.
She smiled. “Wes, it’s me, and we are in danger.”