Leyva peered up from her Granbok Soup and found Ymnir staring at her. Something about this young man irked her the wrong way. He was supposed to be my betrothed!?! She thought to herself.
“I can’t quite explain it, but I already feel a deep connection to you,” Ymnir stated, he smiled, and his sapphire eyes sparkled with life.
Leyva felt her guard drop for just a second, as she looked up and returned his smile, “It’s actually quite easy to explain,” She replied, in a voice that was not her own, “You’re an idiot.”
“Ouch, your word cut me deep!” he laughed, “But perhaps you are right, only an idiot would expect a line like that to work on a beautiful warrior like yourself.”
Leyva grunted in response and went back to devouring her meal. She looked up once more and thought to herself, he’s not that bad actually…
Maybe I should just give him a chance.
“Hey, boss?” Keth called out from the other side of the cave entrance.
Leyva opened her eyes and groaned, it felt like she hadn’t slept for days.
“Catching a few zees, huh?”
“No, just resting my eyes,” Leyva replied in a voice that was not her own.
“Yeah, and I’m just scratching my arse!” Laughed Keth in between volleys of cannon-fire.
Leyva began her muscle movement exercises and looked around the cave, all her Storm-Eaters were alive, some were wounded but the nanites inside their tattoos were already sending shocks of electricity into their wounds to seal them up.
They’d been stuck inside this cave for days now, ambushed by a Xaabosian patrol that wasn’t meant to be there, Leyva was going to have some harsh words with their intelligence officer when she got back to Helsia Deep.
“Report?” Demanded Leyva, content to stay seated and get some feeling back into her muscles, Keth had everything under control up there.
“Something doesn’t feel right,” Ymnir answered. He gestured for Leyva to follow him up to the entrance of the cave, once there he turned to face Leyva and she lost herself in those gorgeous eyes, he gave her that smile that was reserved only for her, she felt weightless under that stare.
“How so?” Leyva breathed, wanting nothing more than to be out of this cave and back at that cottage they’d spent the last summer together.
Ymnir turned away and faced the opening to the cave. “We’ve been here for two days, and the worst injury we’ve suffered as a group is a few flesh wounds and a small rock stubbing Keth’s toe.”
“Hey, that rock wasn’t small!” Keth complained as he was reloading his cannon.
Leyva thought of something else that didn’t add up, “When has Jakuun ever been wrong when it comes to Xaabosian patrols?”
“Never,” replied Vynette, who’d recovered from her minor wounds and joined them at the entrance. “Nova found a passage that leads to an exit behind our attackers. She’s gone out to investigate and will be back shortly.”
“Good,” Leyva replied, nodding at each of her team, there wasn’t much more they could do but wait.
Keth had the entrance covered and Vynette had offered to take over from Ymnir, giving Leyva and him some private time deep inside the cave.
Hours later, Nova returned and things were not what they seemed.
Leyva couldn’t believe it. Her father, the Helsian Chieftain had ordered an attack on Red Gentos, a civilian city on the edge of the Molten Sea.
He must’ve known that Leyva would object so he had arranged a little… distraction. The Xaabosian patrol was Helsian’s equipped with Xaabos weaponry, their orders were to delay, and judging by the fires in the distance, they’d done their job.
Leyva was furious. She gathered her team and raced towards Red Gentos, perhaps there was still time to stop it.
“We have to go inside!” Ymnir shouted, struggling to be heard over the crackling fire and screaming children within.
Leyva looked into the eyes of her mate and felt a stab of fear, she nodded her head and watched him race off to cross the flaming threshold, they couldn’t leave those children to burn alive. She ordered the rest of her team to sweep the area and look for survivors, regardless of race before plunging into the raging inferno herself.
Minutes went by as child after child were extracted from the burning building safely. They’d gotten them all. They shared a look of relief and gave each other a hug, Leyva was shaking with both fear and rage, she looked up into Ymnir’s eyes and heard another cry from inside.
Oh no! Leyva thought as she disengaged herself from Ymnir’s arms and started for the door, his hand caught her arm and he threw her back violently. Leyva hit the ground, hard, and growled at her mate. It was no use going after him, he’d sensed the same danger, that the building was about to collapse, and chosen to take the risk.
“Ymnir!” she called out, terror creeping into her voice as she heard sections of the housing collapse.
She saw his silhouette in the door frame and she rejoiced, with him were two terrified little children. He’d done it, he’d found them and brought them to safety. Leyva laughed and all that fear and rage were forgotton for a moment…
Within seconds, everything changed. A loud snap and a terrifying groan signalled the buildings fall, Ymnir looked up as everything started to descend upon him and he gave Leyva one last smile before he tossed the two children outside the building and a tonne of burning rubble crushed him.
“OOOOOOOOOOO!” Leyva shouted as she awoke from her horrible dream.
The only problem was, that, that was no dream. That was a memory, but not her own. What was happening to her?