Lina woke with a splitting headache, and fierce temper to match. Her bleary gaze skimmed over the wreckage of the campsite, surprised to find herself resting on Gourry's stomach-slightly singed but other wise unharmed. Zelgadiss was a story all to himself. The chimera was slumped over, his head cradled in his palms. She was almost positive his shoulders were...shaking. Lina grimaced, trying to remember what happened last night (she had been as bad as Naga with her ale for Christ sake!). As she knelt beside him, his head lifted and she caught a glimpse of red rimmed eyes.
Okay...one question answered. He had been crying. But why? In answer to her inward pondering, he held out a sheet of parchment for her examination. The script was immediately familiar...but since when did Ameria write letters?
Lina, Gourry and Zelgadiss:
First, I would like to thank you or the marvelous adventures, I really had a great time. When I reflect upon them, I realize how much you had to endure dealing with me. I'm sorry for my annoyingly childish behavior. I wish I had the guts to explain all of this in person, but I just didn't want to bother you. It would have felt just weird just leaving after all we have been though together...so here, you go. A note of sorts...eventually, I will have to rule over my Kingdom of Saillune and I know now that I still have much to learn before taking on such a heavy responsibility. I was blessed to have been given such wonderful advice by "the one who shines like Gold upon the sea of chaos", and "he who is the winged dragon of the Heavens". Well I must be off, as I have a long journey to make. I have two small favors to ask of you guys though. 1.) Please tell my father that I am okay and will be ready to take my proper place as a Princess upon my return. 2.) Take care of yourselves; don't get into more trouble than you can handle and...never give up.
Crown Princess Ameria Wil Tesla Saillune
Uh oh...Ameria never signs her full name unless she's really upset or on official business!
"She'll come back eventually." Lina said, chuckling nervously.
"Oh so she already left huh?" Xellos piped up snatching the letter from Lina's limp fingers. He quickly scanned the notice, his features momentarily softening with what could only be called "affection". The mysterious priest then leaned over to smack the underside of Zelgadiss's head with the metal bottom of his staff. The moping chimera grimaced and muttered in an ominous growl.
"What the hell as that for?"
"For being an ass. It's okay to be annoying (clearly thinking of Phiria right about now ^^;;) but there are some (not very many in his estimation x_x;;) lines you just don't cross."
"What did she tell you anyway?"
"Lina what is going on?" Phiria questioned simultaneously, her voice soft with concern, a puzzled Sylphiel trailing obediently behind.
"What did she tell you?!" Zelgadiss reiterated. Xellos merely smirked casting a brief glance to Phiria before murmuring "Sore wa himitsu." [That is a secret]
"Ameria's gone...possibly forever." The flame-hair sorcerer replied shortly, indicating the sheet of foolscap that Xellos still clutched. Filia shifted the baby Val to one side, before peeking around the Priest's broad shoulders.
"He who shines like gold upon the sea of chaos? Why would L-sama warn Ameria?" Lina puzzled for the millionth time this morning.
I must be in heaven! Xellos thought numbly, careful to conceal his emotions as Phiria's chest was pressed against his arm. Best that the little baggage never discovered how much she meant to him...that could cause trouble. For the both of them (his nose wrinkled as a certain Beast Master popped into his mind). As she read the script worry clouded her sapphire orbs, and for a moment, Xellos wanted to reach over and kiss that frown away. Val, unaware of the serious situation, squirmed onto his "mothers" shoulder, and nimble as a dancer; he leapt onto Xellos.
"Daddy!" He chortled in delight, arms wrapped about the Houshi's neck in a death lock. Xellos awkwardly held onto the giggling boy, while the others gaped-awestruck by the image of Val holding onto the Mazoku as if he was his true father.
"Val!" Phiria exclaimed in embarrassment, cheeks flushed a rosy hue of pink. She tugged at her adopted son, imploring him to let go. He was not listening at all and stubbornly clung with all of his might. Xellos put up a placating palm and quickly injected:
"Uh don't worry it is no trouble really. I can hold him for awhile if you like."
Phiria rolled her eyes and turned her attention back to Lina, looking upset by the current predicament.
"What are we going to do?
"Well chances are she'll end up in Saillune eventually...when she does..." Lina trailed off.
"As if she would want to talk to us?" Zelgadiss muttered. In a grim voice he continued: "I half expect a bounty to be placed on my head for what we said to her."
"What we said to her? Uhm...could you tell me please...I kinda don't remember." The sorcerer confessed with an embarrassed blush.
"..." Zelgadiss's mouth hung open.
"Miss Lina what DID you do to that poor girl!" The young dragon exclaimed mace in hand.
"What indeed." Xellos murmured snidely, for a second...looking truly angry. Then he grinned and cheerfully inserted: "Your problem...not mine!" Zelgadiss flinched under Phiria's probing gaze; uncomfortably aware it was his fault. "Wait! Why...why would Cefied work together with L-sama?" Phiria gasped as her gaze caught a particular statement in the hasty farewell note.
"Look here!" She pointed to the description, her fingers trembling. "He who is the winged dragon of the Heavens...that's Cefied!"
Xellos frowned noting the gathering was getting far too serious and moody for his tastes. So he took matters into his own hands (LITTERALLY!). Smack!
"Aiii!" Phiria's outraged yelp resembled nails scraping on a chalkboard. She swiveled around on her heel and glared murderously at the demonic priest. "Namagomi![raw garbage] Y-You HENTAI [pervert]!"
"Daddy hit Mommy's bottom!" Val chortled, only adding to his mother's outrage. The mace made a re-appearance pulled from somewhere in hammer-space.
"Watch out for the baby." He replied with an amused chuckle. She slowly lowered the weapon of destruction, looking very reluctant to do so. Suddenly he teleported, and her eyes widened as something lightly squeezed her rear this time.
Part 3 | Fanfiction