Chapter 5: Dangerous Encounters✔️

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The forest has sucked me in. I feel dizzy and tired, but take joy in the fact that I haven't run across any nasty creatures, elven or otherwise. I can only thank my brothers for the protection they have sent with me.

It's been a week now. I've been running, pacing, using up what little energy that's still raving through my system. My feet are blistered, not used to the harsh setting I have been thrown into, not used to this path I have taken.

My food supply is dwindling. I'm left with a few loaves of bread and a hunk of cheese. As of yet, I haven't had the need to hunt for my nourishment, but if I continue like this it will definitely be a necessity.

I'm safely hidden in a little grove under a fallen tree, sipping on my water jug. I'm lucky to have found a small creek or I would be severely dehydrated by now.

The Vartans, the Kings very own army, has yet to show their faces. King Othorion has so many resources at his disposal. A skilled enchantress could easily locate me, so I can only wonder how I have yet to be found.

I can still feel the lump in my pocket, my present from Dayne untouched. I couldn't bring myself to open the last gift I will ever receive from my family, so I keep it tucked away, safe and decide that if I ever make it out of here, I will open this gift.

I don't rest for too much longer. It is not wise to sit and wait for trouble to find you. My boots are noisy along these unknown paths, but I can feel myself being drawn to something. I can't stop my feet as I glide through the trees, a disturbance that, if found, would be eaten alive for sure.

The farther I go the more sounds I hear, chirping birds, rustling leaves. Wherever I'm heading seems to still have a bit of life clinging to it.

'Come to me, my dear.'

A whispering voice is in my ear and I try to shake it off, I try to pull back, clinging to a nearby tree in fear. What was that?

A wave of fear is crushing my heart. I draw my bow. I knock an arrow into place as I let this voice pull me until I'm staring into a lake that is glittering in its beauty.

The water is so still that I almost don't believe it's real. I climb over a tree, using it as a perch to get a better view.

'Come to me.'

It's the voice, soft and melodious. I reach forward, walking closer. My crystal eyes take in the glory of this cerulean lake, this haven amidst a forest full of death and darkness.

My hand is falling, reaching to touch its surface when I feel it.

Arms are wrapped around me, hands are covering my mouth, the lake forgotten as I'm pulled out of my trance.

I try to scream, try to fight.

There is a woman in front of me. Her hair is long and red and her body movements are somewhat birdlike in nature, cocking her head back and forth, staring at my ears in turn. Her eyes seem to look deep into my soul before she smiles widely at me.

"We have a high Elven lady on our hands here, Petra."

The woman, Petra, that has me tightly in her grasp is laughing as I struggle to break free.

"Grab the rope, Nel. This one is quite a bit more feisty than some of the others have been in the past." Her voice sends chills down my spine, like nails on a chalkboard.

I land a sharp elbow into the gut of Petra as she tries and fails to get me tied up, pulling my magyk closer to the surface, on the verge of attack before I am knocked from the side, a pair of lips smiling against my ear.

"You know, you should really be thanking us." Nel, the birdlike lady says in her sing song voice before clasping my face in her hands and pushing her magic to my brain, effectively stunning me into a state of stillness, unable to move a single limb on my body as a blackness starts to shade my vision.

Petra finishes her ties in no time, a natural. "Hey, Rhovan, do you think you can cary this one? Or do you need me to do it?"

Just before I fall under, I hear the most equitsite voice that has ever graced my sensitized ears. "She's so slight I'd imagine even Nel over there could Cary her, but if you insist..."

Nel:

Petra:

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Petra:

Petra:

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