Chapter Twenty Five: Roxy

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Roxy:

I sighed and lay back against the grass. It was a beautiful afternoon. I just wished I wasn't spending it sat around doing nothing. The Arcans had insisted on going to the port. Brae had said something about trade and the girls were in the city's main shopping centre, which was next to the harbour. I was letting them walk around alone at their own pace while I sat out enjoying the sunshine. Discussions on trade sounded boring and I definitely didn't want to get stuck with the girls.

The port was busy today. I had never seen so many ships in the harbour, or heard so many different accents calling out. I couldn't wait until they all went away again and we could go back to the tranquil peace which usually occupied the port. It was normally one of the best places to be if you wanted some quiet. Shoppers usually remained safely inside the centre, keeping far away from the outside. The centre was only located here because there was so much space. No one else wanted to build too close to the port.

Sooner than I expected the Arcans were traipsing back towards me, looking very serious and business like and without a shopping bag in sight. The group seemed different though, larger. Wait - there was more of them now and they definitely didn't have any Helians with them. Confused, I stood up and waited for them to get closer. A new girl lifted a pair of dark sunglasses from her eyes and caught sight of me properly. Her olive-toned face contorted with shock. She looked as though she was going to be sick and she grabbed hold of Brae's hand. My stomach churned strangely.

Who was she?

Jasmine: Who was she?

Roxy: She must be with him. But she didn't look like a

Jasmine: Helian. The first one I'd seen. She looked

Roxy: Strange. Very strange. Her skin and her hair were too dark, yet her eyes were too

Jasmine: Warm, the colour of mud, but warmer, inviting somehow. I wondered

Roxy: Did she have any powers? She must have, why else would she have been here?

Jasmine: Why was she here? It was her. I was sure of it. She was the girl from my dream.

Roxy:

"Roxy, this is Jasmine - the friend I was telling you about the other day, from the Arcan Realm - and Brody. They came over with some urgent news about my father."

"That was nice. And now they're leaving again?" Who did they think they were? They couldn't let more guests show up out of the blue.

"No. They will stay now for the rest of our trip. They took a lot of risks getting here and the safest way back will be with us."

The three girls were huddled close together, whispering about something. I got the impression from the Arcans' expressions that they were as surprised as I was to see the girl. Maybe she was stalking Brae and had come all this way to see him and he was just too noble to send her packing. That sounded like the sort of thing he would do. Still, I needed to be cautious. She was definitely looking at me strangely. Perhaps this was actually pre planned, and they had sent her over on some sort of... assassination attempt? Maybe not. I was reading into things way too much.

She was weird looking - the strangest Arcan I had ever seen. She hadn't put her sunglasses back on and her eyes were an unnerving blue, exactly like the Brizan Protectors'. I didn't know you could get Arcans with eyes that colour.

"Well we should be getting back now anyway. Lots of official business planned for this afternoon. Wouldn't want you to miss any of those boring meetings you seem to like so much, would we Brae? And maybe your friends should start looking for somewhere to stay if they're going to go back with you..."

"Jazz and Brody will stay with us - we don't mind sharing rooms and I can't see why it could possibly be a problem for you to add two more. I won't have an Arcan staying in this city alone." He had a frustrating way of phrasing things so that it made it really difficult to challenge him. So I just shrugged and turned to leave. I was definitely going to be keeping an eye on her. Jasmine. She was standing next to Brae, closer than necessary. What sort of a name was that anyway? It was weak and fragile, like the flower it came from. Well, flowers were dealt with easily enough; if she hung around for too long she was going to get burnt.

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