Bone Diggers - Chapter Twenty Three

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Loading... Chapter Twenty Three

It was now only a short trip to the beauty that was Santiago, and from this vantage point, the whole city was in view. Trees added scattered swatches of green and orange. A large cathedral defined the skyline with its sharp dark points. Despite the charm of the city, Daniel turned to Amilia, captivated by her breathless expression. "Just like you imagined?"

Amilia had been literally on the edge of her seat, waiting for the first glimpse of the city. She finally looked away to grin over at him. "Unbelievably so."

Their horses came to a stop outside a tavern, and Amilia immediately jumped down. She made a detour of ambushing Daniel with a hug before fluttering away towards the building. He chuckled, and followed her inside. Amilia asked the man at the counter for two rooms. The clerk looked at her, then, with a slight narrowing of his eyes, moved on to Daniel. The expression wasn't quite clear enough to say if he thought they were trouble or just secretly up to something sinful. But the exchange of coin silenced whatever objection was there.

Amilia turned to Daniel and held one of the keys out in front of him. "Your room is waiting for you, sir."

"Why thank you, mademoiselle." He pocketed the key and headed back out to pull the wagon and horses around to the stables. Afterwards, they returned to their rooms, which were separated by a measure of the hall.

The very first thing Daniel did was fall onto the bed, letting every inch relax into it.

The brief respite was interrupted by a knock on the door. He sat up as Amilia came in. "So, what's on our tourist to-do list?"

"There's the monastery, the cathedral, a museum or two, and even a library inside the University," she rattled on.

"Impressive list."

"And actually, if it's alright with you, I'd like to stop somewhere to get new clothes." Amilia nervously ran a hand through hair that she had barely touched up. "I didn't bring much to start with, and some of that was ruined."

"Of course," Daniel said. She had first come to him so upset, and he had thought the watery mishap days ago would have dampened her spirits further, but she seemed to find joy simply in being here. "We can even go right away."

As they walked down to the market, Daniel was surprised how many people carried on with bored expressions. It wasn't that they were unhappy, but what Amilia had said about seeing the same thing every day rang true.

A quaint shop with spools of rich fabric stretched out in its window caught Amilia's attention from around a corner. She let go of Daniel's arm as she took a few steps in that direction. "I won't drag you in, and I promise to be out as quick as possible."

He wouldn't have really minded, but let her go as she pleased. She was right in one respect, however; the wait wasn't long at all. His stare broke into a grin as she did a spin upon her return. The dress she loved enough to wear out of the store was bluish gray and flowed down to her ankles. The tint brought out the traces of green and gold in her eyes with ease. "You were right," Daniel said. "Everything in this city is beautiful." Her blush served as a new accent color.

They decided the cathedral would be their next stop, a joint choice that ended up surprising her. A thief wanting to visiting a church for fun was a rarity. Roman-Gothic spikes stretched upwards with crosses nested at the very top. The watchful clouds above cast a shadowy gray onto the stones. Amilia shared a smile with the statue of Saint James outside as they passed.

Their self-guided tour ended at the University's library, where some of the books lining the shelves seemed to predate the church's wisdom. Daniel tried not to get too wrapped up with a single text when everything begged for his attention.

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