The travelling didn't get any less tiring, and now I kept getting looks from the brothers. I knew they didn't mean to do it, but they all stared when I wasn't looking. Even Draven was giving me wary glances, like I was about to fall over and break down.

It was just over two weeks until we got to the border, but I ignored it best I could. We got to Trabal, and to nice warm beds. I laughed at how Finn hugged the pillows and thanked God. We were going to spend the night and find horses in the morning.

I was trying my best to not think about... everything, but seeing the familiar surroundings just sparked the memories. I felt swamped by the guilt and agony of all those memories... but they just wouldn't stop. I thought I could handle it, thought I'd manage fine here... but I just wasn't. I was too pale and depressed.

Draven noticed, he kept telling me that we should go, just take the money and leave them to get over the second boarder... but I refused. I knew it was hurting him too, but I kept my deals. I was getting the brothers to the boarder.

We slept in three rooms again, and it was fantastic to just drop my bag on the floor and collapse into a bed. Draven said something about sightseeing and left the room. I knew that meant he just wanted some time alone. I didn't bother telling him to be careful, he would be. I just lay in bed, letting my tired aching muscles relax.

Someone knocked on the door. I was up, dagger in hand in a second. I may not prefer weapons, but it never hurt to be prepared.

"Come in," I tucked the dagger up my sleeve.

"Hey," Tyce said with a smile as he closed the door behind himself. I sighed, putting the knife away and sitting back on the bed.

"Hey."

"You okay?" he sat on the bed beside me, but far enough away to not make me start to feel giddy. Damn it was not good that I was feeling like this. I can't get involved with clients on missions; it never ended well and only caused problems. Especially here, in this place. This was the single most problematic place

to get close to anyone.

"I'm fine," I laughed hollowly. I knew I didn't sound fine.

"Liar," he looked at me closely. "How much does it bother you?"

"What?" I pretended to not know what he was talking about. Maybe if I played dumb he'd just go away.

"Your family, what those men told us yesterday," he wasn't looking away. "You were different when we got off the ship, but the difference from Tific to here is painfully obvious. Does something that happened years ago still eat at you this much?"

"Yes." I said evenly. "Now I'd like you to leave before I make you."

"You're not going to ask me why I care?" he asked with a smile. I turned and stared at him. I just did not understand this man.

"Fine," I sighed. "Have you figured out why you care?"

"Yeah," he stood up. "But I better leave before you make me." With that and another smile, he got up and walked out.

My jaw dropped. Were all men like this?! Completely random, strange and change emotion in a split second? I mean a few days ago he looked ready to kiss

me at the river and now he was walking out after saying he wanted to talk? And they say women are complicated.

I spent another few seconds staring at the door, wondering if he wanted me to follow him, but then the next thing I knew, Draven was tapping my shoulder to wake me up.

"Hmm?" I turned over sleepily. "What's wrong? Are there guards?"

"You worry too much little sister," he laughed. "Come on, we're going to dinner."

The Emerald ThiefRead this story for FREE!