Friday, February 22, 2019

#FridayFlash - Lost Little Lamb part 5


We rode toward the rising moon, silent except for the clop of the horses' hooves and creak of their harnesses. We'd left the town easily enough; the guards at the gate recognized us and asked no questions.

I had questions, though. Many of them. I'd heard whispered conversation while packing my gear, but no one said anything to me as we left and rode. It wasn't often that I was so obviously excluded from their plans, and it gave me a sense of unease.

As did the way Dirk had called me his Lamb. His Lamb. So possessive. The longer the group remained quiet, the more time I had to replay his voice, his reaction. The way his fingers had lingered on my neck, the soft touches as he checked me over.

I had to simply be reading too much into the situation, an overreaction brought on by stress and the proximity of Albrecht. Dirk couldn't have fallen in love with me. He couldn't be threatened by the dokkalf, or any other monster. He was the one who wanted to use me as bait. Dirk wanted to dangle me in front of the things that wanted to eat me.

Albrecht hadn't looked like he wanted to eat me. Too much time alone to think, so naturally my thoughts returned to the mystery man. Not a man, really. A dokkalf. Someone with magic, and mystique, and incredible green eyes. He didn't want to eat me, but he wanted something from us.

Part of me wanted to know what he'd do to a lamb if he caught her all alone.

I clenched the reins harder, biting the inside of my lip. What kind of thought was that? What was going wrong with me? This wasn't the first time I'd thought about the bite, the fangs, the draw. The incredible pleasure. The way he'd clutched me to him, caressed my hips, moaned while he fed.

Lambs shouldn't feel these things. Growing women did, though. Needs and wants were part of the human condition, but it wasn't proper to have such dark yearnings. I wasn't supposed to wonder what Albrecht's mouth would feel like against my new scar.

Have you dealt with a dokkalf before?” I asked quietly, glancing at Dirk. I needed to talk, change my thoughts from the direction they'd taken.

Once, when I was young. Still in training, it was mostly my father who faced him. But the creature was devious, cunning, powerful with old magic. It took everything my father knew to drive the being away.”

I noticed the phrase he used. Drove away, not kill. Was there any chance for us to defeat Albrecht? We certainly didn't have the equipment necessary to deal with old magic?

This is our turn,” Dirk said, drawing his horse to a halt. We gathered around him, watching him silently. “Lamb, stay close to me, we've got point. Brenna, bring up the rear. Nice and slow, keep your eyes open.”

He nodded at me, and I nudged my horse forward. We rode side by side, and I whispered to him. “Why am I up front with you?” Unless we had a trap set, I was usually in the middle with Aidan.

Dirk moved his horse closer and reached over to me. I took his hand, same as I had many times over the years, but the way he squeezed it was new. Tight, possessive, thumb caressing my knuckles. “If he wants my Lamb, then I will let him see her right up front. Let him be dazzled by her, ignore everyone else.”

This was not how I expected my night to go. Not the trap we would normally lay. Not the way I should feel. Not the way Dirk should look at me.

But what was a girl to do?

Dirk kept ahold of my hand, riding close by my side. His presence made me uncomfortable for the first time in all our years together. Couldn't I deal with just one confusing new sensation without having to solve them all?

No time to figure it out now; we'd reached the dokkalf's manor.

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