12.5: Rendezvous

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I know I said I wasn't going to update but I have WiFi and I finished this little half chapter yesterday in creative writing so I thought I'd post it while I could :)

Thank you for all your love and support! The radar says it's not going to hit us badly, and that it'll touch down near the border of N.C. and SC as a level 2 hurricane instead of a level 4! I'm out of school today and tomorrow, and I have no idea if I'll have WiFi tomorrow or the days after, but I'm gonna be okay. Also, I was just told there's a massive Super Typhoon hitting the South East Asia, particularly the Philippines and China, called Mangkhut, which could be really really bad. It's supposed to touch down today so watch for any news of it. Please keep them, as well as SC/lower N.C. in your thoughts! Love you all!

-F.M.

Dear Diary,

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Dear Diary,

I think I'm in love. Remember the handsome man I told you about a while back? The Clementronean nobleman? He and I have been sneaking around, courting in the shadows. He's visiting Everglen this month, so I have "conveniently" decided to stay at the Evertalian palace as well. We've kept our affections for one another secret in order to avoid scrutiny from the court, and in all honesty there's a certain thrill that comes with holding a piece of information between two people who are only inches apart under a stairwell...

He is a complete and total distraction from my grief over the loss of my brother, and I drink the sweet liquor of his voice wholeheartedly, allowing myself to be lost in the fantasy world I find in his eyes. Yes, Diary, as you can see I am no better than a little girl in love, but at least I know he is a little boy in love as well. When he left flowers on my balcony one morning by climbing up the nearby trellis as though he were a young, troublesome boy with a taste for adventure in the cage that is the palace, I knew how he felt about me.

A couple nights ago we met secretly in the stables, laying low in piles of loose hay, allowing pieces of it to catch in our hair and clothes, not caring how we presented ourselves to one another as no one else was watching anyways, so why not meet each other in our true forms instead of the facade we wear for court life. For the most part, we talked about our lives, but eventually we drifted to more trivial matters.

"Lord Sencen left the palace for secret business," I mused. "Fitz won't tell me what Keefe is doing, but it seems important."

"I happen to know," Wylie smiled, "he's spying on the Neverseen from within, and in his time away from the radicals, he's banding together a group called the Black Swan to fight against the Neverseen."

"Really?" I raised my eyebrows, "Impressive."

"Indeed, he even asked me to join, which is how I know about all this."

"And did you say yes?"

Wylie nodded, "I did, however, what Keefe doesn't know is that the Black Swan has been around for generations, working in the shadows, keeping the Neverseen at bay."

"And you have not told him?"

He shook his head, "We want to keep the history of the Black Swan secret so when this whole debacle is over, we may continue working in secret. We have no allies or direct affiliations because we never know who we will work to correct the actions of next."

I frowned, "You think you may have to work against the Vackers one day? Or even the Clementronean royalty?"

"We do not know, but it is better to be safe than sorry," he shrugged.

"Then why are you telling me? What if I tell the Vackers myself?" I dared to ask out of pure curiosity, knowing full well that I would not betray Wylie's trust.

The corners of his lips drew up in a smile, "Something tells me you wouldn't."

"Something... something like this?" slowly, I leaned forwards and pressed my lips to his. The kiss tasted like Wylie's favorite Honey candy and the strawberries I'd eaten before our rendezvous, and the sugar from the two still danced on my tongue as I pulled away.

"Something like that," he laughed under his breath, his eyes caught in mine. After a few moments, he asked, "Do you think others sneak around Everglen like this?"

"Fitz and his secretary, without a doubt," I laughed. "She was originally only Biana's handmaid, but when Keefe left Fitz took her on as his assistant."

Wylie frowned, "Why her, of all people?"

A smile flickered across my lips as I hesitated for a moment before sharing what I knew about Sophie Foster. Wylie listened intently, hanging on my every word, his eyebrows pinched as if they needed to be close enough to undo some sort of puzzle.

"A telepath, you say? Lived with humans for most of her childhood, and has no clue of who her real parents are?" he asked when I finished.

I nodded, "It is a very strange ordeal."

"Very strange... but yet... one that might have an answer."

"Do you know something?"

He shook his head, "It is only a figment of an idea... but I shall tell you all about it when I look into a few things. It might seem crazy... but if I'm correct... well, let's just say that Sophie might be Clementronean."

Absorbing the notion, I gasped, "Oh! Do you really think..."

"I can not be sure, but it might be a possibility. Like I said, I will need to look into this further." Softly, he smiled and tucked a lock of her hair behind her ear, "For now, let's just stay in the here and now. In the you and me."

"Alright," I smiled, not realizing what events I would set into motion, and wrapped my arms around Wylie's neck as he kissed me.

We spent the rest of the night in quiet mirth and gentle kisses, enjoying one another's company and finding refuge from the hecticness of the rest of the world. Little did we know, it would be one of the last good nights for a while... but that's a story for another day.

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