A/N: Tom is from a novel I hope to publish later this year.
When Tom was still a kitten, his favorite place was in the house library.
He would spend hours curled up in the chair next to the fire, looking through the books, at pictures and maps of faraway places. He’d read through the collection of scripts that his mother and father collected from the theater. He’d look through the window, dreaming about what his life would become.
After the theater had been bought and Tom’s life was changed, one of the first things to go were the books. In small stacks at first but by the end, the whole library was empty.
Now, while he was teaching Clyde to read, Tom couldn’t help but think back to that sheltered room and miss his books.
Mabarina didn’t understand when Barty gave her the ring.
“It’s shiny,” she remarked and tried to hand it back to him. He curled her hand around the silver band.
“You gave me a name. I give you the ring,” he explained.
Mab looked at the ring with renewed interest. She held it up and looked through it.
“For our union?”
Barty beamed up at her and she just had to reach down, grab his horn and kiss him.
“The inside summons a dagger,” he gasped when she released him. “But only for you.”
“My only love, you know me so well.”
Destiny liked the ocean. She had never been, in all her sixy some years of living. She liked the feeling of the deck vibrating as the waves crashed against it and the rhythmic swaying under her feet. It reminded her of a dance she knew, long ago.
Aku did not seem to agree, from the way his knuckles blanched against the rope he curled around his hands. Destiny clucked at him.
“You’ve been around the world more than I have, friend! You should be used to it,” she said.
“The sea is not a friend,” he barked at her as Destiny leaned over the side to look into the water. “I’ll not come after you if you fall in!”
A/N: This is world building for my romance novel series. Yeah. I said it and I meant it!
Lex was only four when his nurse maid took him out of his cradle and outside. It was a warm night and he only shivered and fussed when she put him barefooted on the ground.
“Hush, Lexxy. Look!” She pointed up and Lex craned his head back.
The Night Eye was only beginning to open. The silver light slowly grew until the whole orb was round, peering down at ground.
His nurse took him on her knee and bounced him. “That’s Orbis, Lex. He sees us all and we are his charges. So long as you can see his eyes, the Unseen can never hurt you.”
Over the next few days Leonardo noticed a distinct shift in the mood of the castle.
“Fencing?” He repeated when Aspen told them at breakfast.
She nodded. “Yeah. Sword fighting for practice. It’s great for your reflexes and flexibility.” She took a bite of her breakfast, pieces of sugared wheat and dried fruit in milk. “Probably strength too, if you use heavy swords.”
“Will you be teaching us?” Napoleon asked, casting a dubious look over Aspen.
She shook her head. “I never learned. It’ll be Kami.”
Leonardo frowned. “I do not approve of violence in that way.” He shook his head. “I do not want to fence.”
“No one will make you, don’t worry Leo.” Aspen smiled at him then glanced at his breakfast: coffee. “But uh, you should definitely have something other than that. Otherwise Russo might make you eat that cup, too.”
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Magpie Jones had always found it difficult to ask for help.
Even when they were in primary school it was hard to admit when they needed someone else to step in and assist. Once Mags had done an entire biolab by themselves, forgoing sleep for forty-eight hours.
But now, with a castle full of the previously dead, Magpie had to admit they could use a shoulder to lean on.
“Hey, how long have you been here?” Aspen poked Magpie in the shoulder. “Have you slept?”
Magpie smiled. Having someone looking out for them wasn’t so bad.