So dense the forest was; trees became evergreen canopies above our heads, and in the dark they were a maze to travel through. The moon had made its full transition into the sky, therefore we were not completely without light. The moon gave all it could offer, but it still wasn't good enough.
Strangely, I felt slightly braver now. In the dark, here amongst the trees and dissolved into the wilderness, was a different princess. I realized that I preferred her.
This Faylinn was someone I had just met. She was untouchable by danger, an explorer of the night. A delinquent, but in a refreshing way. This Faylinn was running away with Silus. This Faylinn was rescuing a family that no doubt needed her more than any other.
But still she felt like a little girl inside.
Silus, after a while, trusted the woman on her feet and set her down. She was still scared, skittish, and startlingly clueless, but she could walk. The boy, on the other hand, had told me his name was Cleavon. When Silus had allowed Letita to walk, he offered to hold the child. In any other case, I wouldn't let him. But I had been carrying the boy a long while and Silus had barely broken a sweat carrying his load.
Now Cleavon was asleep in Silus’ arms, snoring slightly against his broad shoulder. Curled up, he seemed to very small.
There hadn't been a word said between my best friend and me ever since he offered to carry Cleavon, and even then the words we exchanged were few. I yearned for it just to be daylight, and to get back to the cabin so Silus could start being himself again. With anyone but me, he wore his mask. But in truth, Silus was good natured and kind. He was also comical and very talented when it came to catching things in his mouth. He had never truly changed from the Silus I'd met as a child- he has always been the same to me: clever, strong, humorous, with a smile that made the sun come out at night and the birds sing at day.
"It should be up here a little onwards," Silus broke the silence with his deep, throaty voice. He sounded hoarse--tired. But if what he said was correct, I'd most likely be able to coax him into sleep to restore his energy.
And he was, in fact, truthful. Through a patch of merciless branches and leaves which shredded our clothes and clawed at our faces, a wooden box of a house sat.
It was dirty and obviously made by Silus himself, but not was it unstable. It stood proud despite its size and grungy appearance. Two small windows lined the front, and to my unbelieving eyes actual curtains could be seen behind the layers of glass. The roof and walls had grown sorts of moss, and underneath our feet leaves decayed, showing signs of another harsh autumn.
It came to me that no one would ever search here, go here, or wander here. Even if one did manage to stumble into this dangerous forest, never would they bother to look into the grove of trees and shrubbery that surrounded Silus' little home.
I startled at the sound.
"I love it," I admitted truthfully, and Silus cocked his head.
"Says the princess," he murmurs. "Who grew up in a great stone castle."
I knew the moments that he felt fragile- not mad or sad, or indifferent... just fragile. Certain things made him feel this way, and after years of bringing him closer and closer to me, I could detect such moments.
Silus stepped forward, bracing himself as thorn bushes slashed at him. He protected Cleavon's head with his arms, but when they disappeared through the bushes I knew I would have clothes to sew.
I was never good at sewing...well, never really good at anything a lady does. My mother could cook, clean, sew, and heal, even though she doesn't have to. She learned the ways of a woman by her own ambition to do so, and I had none of that ambition. Madge had done all of those things for me over the years, and even tried to teach me. But I was a bad student, the subjects never holding my attention. When I did try, the results were disastrous.
"Come on now," I held Letita's arm, helping her through the spiky passageway. She resisted a bit, but I was able to slowly lead her through. Every scratch she took made her shiver, and for minutes she would stand rigidly still. I managed to get her to the other side of the bushes by projecting images of her son into her head with my words, describing him to her.
|Molly Quinn||as Faylinn|
|Alex Pettyfer||as Silus|
|Ty Panitz||as Cleavon|
|Alexander Ludwig||as Braxton|
|Edward Speleers||as Giles|