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Aligeri - Chapter 31 Part IChapter Thirty-One: Family (Part I)
Guy's eyes went wide, and the key in his hand fell to the floor with a soft thud. For a moment he just stared, dumbfounded.
"But..." he choked, reaching forward and scooping her up tightly in his arms as if he thought she might fade away. "You died! I was holding you when it happened, Ruby!"
The prince was shaking as he said this, and after a few seconds was sobbing into her red hair, overwhelmed with happiness that he was really holding her again.
"I know, and I did," the princess said, crying with happiness as well. "Feles resurrected me and took me back to her palace. She said things were too dangerous, and hoped that if everyone just assumed I was dead, Mercurius would leave for a while. But seeing how hard it was... oh Guy! I wanted to come home sooner, but she wouldn't let me! Finally, she agreed to let me return, only because she felt it was safe enough."
"I love you so much," Guy told her, and it looked like he'd never let go of her ag
Aligeri - Chapter 30 Part IIChapter Thirty: Yule (Part II)
The couple, enjoying their time alone together, were caught up in one another for the next few days. Meanwhile, however, things were extremely uneventful for Ailuros and Zephyr. The sprite seemed to stay in her cat form more often than usual during the snowstorm, probably to better keep herself warm in the cold weather. Now, the storm was clearing up quite a bit, however it continued to snow lightly outside. It was just a few more days until the ball, and Ailuros was in her normal form, her head in her hands, bored.
"I hate the weather..." she grumbled, as pessimistic as ever.
Zephyr was sitting in corner of the room, playing his flute. He stopped to respond to the sprite's comment.
"At least it's warm in here, right?" he offered, gesturing around with his hand. "Frankly, I don't mind the blizzard at all; it brings some safety."
"I guess..." Ailuros agreed with a slight shrug, stretching out her legs before lying down on her back to stare up at the
Aligeri - Chapter 30 Part IChapter Thirty: Yule (Part I)
A full-scale search of the palace was issued as soon as possible, but after scouring every inch of the castle and grounds, they found no one who wasn't supposed to be there. It was both unnerving and relieving at the same time. During the entire search, Zephyr stayed in his room, trying to calm himself by playing his flute, but it didn't seem to be helping. Eventually, he simply gave up trying.
"They aren't going to find him," he said to Ailuros, who was still there (just in case). "He's too clever."
Ailuros, who was reclined on one of his chairs, threw him a glance.
"But how?" she asked, shaking her head. "I understand there are many places to hide in the castle... but there are so many people searching for him... how could he possibly go completely unnoticed?"
Sitting up, she asked, "And why now? I'd say he's targeting you or Clarice, but he hasn't done anything for nearly a month... would he be using Yule as some sort of... cover?"
Murdering Mary SueMurdering Mary Sue
Every aspiring writer has met her at least once, whether in his own works or in those of others. The alluring temptation of a perfect character taunts the author from one side while his muse urges him to keep writing from the other. Who wouldn't love her? She's the most beautiful, talented, fantastic woman in the universe, with not a flaw in sight. Every woman wants to be her; every man wants to marry her, so why would anyone want to kill her? Who would want to murder Mary Sue?
I would. I and many greater authors have been working hard to keep this succubus in her proper place: the trash can. Mary Sue is one of the worst enemies of good fiction, second only to poor spelling and grammar. And the seductress tempts even the most cautious writer. Her many disguises can make her difficult to spot, allowing her to weave her way into every plot twist and turn, slowly destroying the author's work. By the time shes found, she may have done so much damage that the
Aligeri - Chapter 29Chapter Twenty-Nine: Blood and Snow
Later that day, Guy and Zephyr were on their way back to the castle with the latter's items. The Saffirs had agreed to let Zephyr stay, and so they had gone to the Sleeping Goat to pick up his belongings. The prince seemed rather happy.
"It's great that they're allowing you to stay at the palace for a while," he commented. "Now, hopefully, you'll feel more at ease."
"I can't say I feel any more safe being in a castle," Zephyr quipped. "Look at the guard here: they couldn't stop even yer friend from being attacked by Rainer. I'm not so sure thicker walls will make much of a difference."
He adjusted his backpack slightly as they went down the street.
"How is it ye expect me to help ye anyway? I can't do anything for ye other than confirm or deny whether a given murder was committed by the boy. What help is that?"
"I just love your optimism..." he grumbled sarcastically, crossing arms. Hesitating after Zephyr's next question, he admi
Aligeri - Chapter 28Chapter Twenty-Eight: Demon
The blonde nodded in sad understanding, putting a hand over her mouth to prevent herself from letting her emotions get the best of her. After a quiet moment, Clarice concluded that there was nothing that she could really do right now, and politely excused herself in a small voice.
At first she really didn't know what she was going to do with herself. On one hand, she could go to her room and try to get a hold of herself...but then she found herself heading to Charles' room. After everything that had happened today, she just wanted to talk to her brother. That, and she wanted a hug very, very badly right now.
"Charles... can I come in?" Clarice asked when she reached his doorway. It was still pretty obvious how upset she was.
Charles had been about to climb into bed and was in his nightclothes when she called, but he knew that tone of hers and walked to the door to let her in.
"Is everything alright?" he asked. Clarice shook her head.
Aligeri - Chapter 27Chapter Twenty-Seven: Innocent Eyes
Guy stared at Feles for a moment, as if in disbelief. Clarice looked at Alyx, a concerned expression on her face.
"This means that he was telling the truth..." she started. Guy shook his head.
"But..." He started. The female aligeri looked over at him, a little angrily.
"I know you don't trust him after what he did to you, but if there was another murder in the Port District, then he's innocent, just like he said! We can't just keep him locked up!"
The prince's face fell. He didn't want to admit it, but Clarice was right. They really had no reason to keep him behind bars now.
"So what should we do about it now?" Alyx asked. "Guards are already being sent to investigate. What do we do? Just go down there and release him?"
"It's a start," Feles said, turning away. "You never know; he may be able to help you."
Even as Feles left and the three turned around to free Zephyr, Guy still looked somewhat reluctant. Regardless of him being proved innocen
Aligeri - Chapter 26Chapter Twenty-Six: The Honest Thief
"Then we should hurry and get to him," Clarice voiced. If he went into the castle, and everyone was just returning from the funeral, then it shouldn't be too hard to catch up to him. They might just be able to catch the assassin. Even as she spoke her opinion, however, rain started to pour from the sky, and so the group headed hastily into the castle either way. Almost everyone was soaked once they were indoors. The servants and guards all went back to their posts, while Feles turned towards the queen and king.
"I know today has been quite difficult for both of you emotionally so far," she began. "But there is something very important you should know. Your son, Garnet, has been under the tutelage of Mercurius for years, and I'm afraid..."
"The past does not matter, Miss Mimosa," the king interrupted. "Garnet is home now. I'll hear no more about his time with that mage, do you understand? Not another word."
The immortal sighed, but nodded. She
Leaving Southampton She was in the kitchen when he stumbled in noisily, tripping as he went past the shelves and catching the edge of the table to keep himself from falling.
Pretending not to hear the stream of curses that followed, she kept her eyes fixed on the dishes, letting her hand trail in the soapy water. There was a loud scraping of wood against grimy concrete as he drew a chair and collapsed into it. At this she looked up, and after a moment's hesitation, she said, unnecessarily, "You've been drinking."
He clutched his head and said nothing. He hadn't shaved in weeks and stank of sweat and alcohol; he looked much older than his eighteen years.
They sat in silence for a while. Then he announced, loudly, "Fuck."
She didn't bother to tell him off. She just waited. And jumped when he suddenly brought his fist down, hard, onto the table.
"Our lives here are s
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