Monday, June 24, 2019

The Shalafae Archives - Found

Alzair returned to the castle, weary in every inch of his being. He couldn't recall the last time he'd laid down to sleep. A week? Three? Alchemy and magic were the only things keeping him going.

The Sidhehan lord wanted to keep looking for his daughter, but he needed to feed and rest.

Every day that passed tore at him, wore at him. Alzair didn't normally track the passage of time; immortality had that affect. Especially on a Chaos Lord. He studied his plans, watched his empire, but never marked how long anything took.

Until Morrigana had been taken. Alzair counted every day since.

He pulled open his robe, reaching for one of the harem with his mind. Another fruitless search festered within, poisoning his heart further. He'd take his frustrations out on whichever nameless girl answered, though it would do little to ease the darkness growing within.

Kyr couldn't stand to be around him anymore. "I can't watch you do this," she'd told him before heading out on her own. "You've lost your way, and I can't help you." Maybe she was hunting for the girl, maybe she wasn't. If she wasn't, Alzair didn't want to know. He didn't want to know much that didn't have to do with finding his wife.

Alzair paused in the act of shedding his clothes, frowning sharply. One of the girls should have been here by now. Should have at least acknowledged him. He reached for them again and found only death. His frown deepened as he made his way to their wing of the castle.

He couldn't slip through the aether, had to walk there. One of the side effects of the alchemical powders that kept him going was a limit on certain powers. Alzair did without small teleports in order to numb the pain.

While the pain was numbed, his anger was often accentuated. By the time he got to the harem, he was in a fine rage, ready to severely punish all of them. They would not like what he did, would beg for mercy.

Alzair found their rooms covered in blood.

His rage froze, turned to concern, turned to outrage. Who had invaded his home and killed his slaves? Their audacity was astounding, and almost earned a modicum of respect. Alzair couldn't think of the last time someone had broken into one of his homes.

The Sidhehan stepped into the carnage, looking for signs of the intruder. Footprints, discarded weapons, shreds of clothes, anything that would lead him to his victim. Alzair hadn't decided yet if the torture would last for a week or a month, but it was going to be painful and terrible.

Blood and chunks covered everything, splashed in random displays of violence. Most of the girls were too dismembered to be identified easily, and it became obvious that they'd been running and hiding when they were brought down.

He also realized the slaughter had been mindless. Without direction. Had one of the girls snapped and killed her haremmates in a psychotic break? It was not unlikely, had happened before. Alzair hadn't kept a harm in so long, it was also possible he'd forgotten how to keep one, how to prevent a massacre of this scale.

A familiar scent taunted his brain. Alzair stopped his searched, closed his eyes, and searched his memory for the owner of that smell. Not Kyra; his sister smelled of honeysuckle and sun-dried linen. Elthanael wasn't around often enough to leave any traces of his amber sandalwood scent, and the Sidhehan's harem wore perfumes and intoxicants.

This was berries and desert sands, with the faintest hint of decaying rose. It haunted his senses, pulled at his heart, but he hadn't smelled it in years.

His eyes flew open as he suddenly recognized the scent. Morrigana! How had it taken him so long to place her aroma? He'd missed it, had hurt when it faded from their pillows.

But he'd cut himself away from all the pain. Purposely numbed himself to the sorrow, and never allowed himself to grieve. Alzair refused to ever believe she was dead, because he did not want to mourn another soulmate.

He was halfway to his rooms before he'd finished processing what he'd smelled, what it meant. The chemicals in his system kept him from reopening blocked connections, but he didn't need them to know that his daughter was back.

Her scent grew stronger as he climbed to his rooms, and bloody footprints marred the steps. His thoughts spun, as though he were a youngling again, and all he wanted was to hold his little one once more.

Alzair burst into the room, breathless, a thousand words building on his tongue, threatening to spill over. None of them came out when he saw her, lying in their bed on her stomach, tail lashing but wingless, freshly bathed.

"You had a fucking harem."

He stared, all words of love dying in his throat. Her anger slapped him in the face with near tangible violence. Why wasn't she as excited as he was? Shouldn't she be throwing herself into his arms? Alzair stared at her with wide eyes.

Morrigana turned to look over his shoulder at him, silver eyes hard and dangerous. "Why didn't they know me?" Her tail lashed harder, slapping against the crimson sheets.

She was naked, but Alzair couldn't appreciate the lovely view of her pale form in his bed again. "When did you get back?" His voice was barely above a whisper. Not the first time this woman had rendered him speechless, nor would it be the last.

His daughter was back, could steal his words again!

Morrigana levered herself up, tail lashing more violently. "I've been here long enough to not find you. Instead, I got to be insulted by your tramps. Tore them apart, so I don't think that will happen again. After I got cleaned up, I laid down to wait for you. And waited. And waited."

Her eyes narrowed, lips peeled back from sharp teeth. "Why weren't you here? Didn't you know I was coming? Why were all those skanks walking around in our castle?" Anger rolled off the hybrid.

Alzair relished her anger, because it meant she was here, not trapped or lost or wherever she had been. Morrigana was right here, in his bed, where he could see her and hold her and love her.

He crossed the room in a few bounds, lunged up onto the bed, and pulled her into a kiss. She growled, resisted, but he didn't care. Alzair kissed her with his entire heart, his entire soul.

The intensity of his love for her frightened him. He knew how deep his connection to her ran, but he was still sometimes surprised by the passion that roared through his soul, his heart, and through his lips.

She held stiff at first, growling, talons digging into his forearms, but the longer he held her, kissing her, the less she held back. Morrigana's growls became sighs, her claws became caresses, and she met his passion with her own.

They made love with a ferocity that could have been mistaken for fighting, making up for lost time. He'd longed for her touch, her body, but most of all for her blazing soul burning against his own.

When they stopped, they were weary and bloody, but not sated. He kissed her sweaty forehead, ran his hand over her inky hair, and knew he would never get enough of this beautiful girl. Woe to any who attempted to separate them again.

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