Pawn of the Neví - Chapter 25 - A'mara Books
Lidzi opened her eyes. It was still dark. She was still pressed against Andrian, her arm across him, though the dragonstone had fallen from her hand. She sat up and reached across him again to retrieve the fallen stone. Her hand reached the bed and felt along Andrian’s side looking for the smooth stone that must be next to him somewhere.
“That tickles,” Andrian complained.
Hastily, she yanked her hand away, sitting up again. “You’re awake!” she cried. She was relieved, but embarrassed that he caught her so close to him. She quickly explained. “I held my dragonstone against you – I was afraid you were hurt. I guess I fell asleep. How do you feel?”
“I still have a headache, and I’m terribly hungry! I haven’t eaten since you disappeared.”
“Ryonis wouldn’t deprive you of food,” Lidzi remarked with disbelief.
“I… couldn’t eat,” he replied. “I had to know you were safe.”
“I’m okay,” Lidzi reassured.
“I didn’t know that earlier. I couldn’t sleep either.”
Lidzi shook her head, though he couldn’t see it in the darkness. “You weren’t responsible for me.”
“Maybe had I treated you better before, maybe you would have listened to me and not gone after Saara. So, yes, it was my fault,” Andrian replied.
“It’s not your fault,” Lidzi insisted. “I would have tried to reason with Saara anyway. I’m stubborn like that.” She shivered as she listened to the rain start to patter on the roof.
“There’s no reason to be cold,” Andrian said, sitting up and putting his arm around her. “There’s a nice warm blanket underneath us too. We could share.”
His stomach rumbled loudly.
“Or I can get you something to eat,” Lidzi said, waving her hand towards the far corner where a small lamp turned on. “You have a few choices, mostly leftover restaurant food. Saara and Viper eat very well.”
Andrian followed her to the kitchen corner.
“Are you sure you’re strong enough to be wandering around?” Lidzi fussed, looking at his handsome, lamp-lit visage.
“I’ll be fine as soon as I get some food in me, whatever is convenient would be great. Maybe something for my head too. I guess I hit my head when I fell.”
Lidzi grabbed the first container of food she could see in the chiller. “What did they do to you?” Lidzi asked as she put the container into the flashoven. She gave him a headache tablet with a glass of water as well, which he took quickly.
“Not sure. One moment, I was in the yard, feeling the void in the leya up here.”
“Yeah, we are completely leya-dampened up here. Nothing in or out!”
He nodded. “Anyway, the next I knew, I was waking up next to you, you trying to get inside my clothes.”
“I was not!” Lidzi cried out, her cheeks warming. “I dropped my dragonstone when I fell asleep!”
Andrian laughed. He held out his hand with the dragonstone in it.
Lidzi took it back and put it in her pocket, her cheeks still warm. She turned to the flashoven and took out the container. Then she looked for plates.
“No need to dirty things,” Andrian said, stopping her. “Maybe a couple of forks.”
Lidzi directed him to the couch in front of the HPS unit. Andrian sat and she tried not to touch him as she sat next to him. They ate.
“What do you think this is?” Andrian asked.
“Not sure. It could be jelip or ovind – maybe a stroganoff? A bit overly-spiced. I shall get us something to drink.” Lidzi got up, grateful for the excuse.
“No mujani, please.”
Lidzi laughed. “I don’t think we have anything that strong. Maybe some nightbrew – unless you want to get some more sleep after eating.”
“That might depend on you,” he replied.
Lidzi looked at him, trying to work out how he meant that. He was looking at the food, taking another bite.
“How about cocoa?” he suggested.
“Sounds good,” Lidzi said, preparing a couple of mugs.
“I don’t suppose we get any news?” Andrian asked.
“No, nothing live. Just some cheesy flicks,” Lidzi replied, not wanting to say that they were all romances.
She took the drinks to the couch, handing Andrian his mug. Their hands brushed as he took it from her. Lidzi looked at his cheek, remembering what it felt like beneath her lips. She tried to clear away the thoughts as she sat down again.
She took a sip of the cocoa and then tried to eat some of the dish that was still on Andrian’s leg. “What are we going to do?” she asked.
“Not sure. No one knows where we are, but everyone knows we are missing and who is behind it. They are looking for us – or will be when everyone’s rested and eaten.”
There was silence for a few minutes. Lidzi drank more cocoa and ate more of the stroganoff, or whatever it was.
“So, why did you kiss me the other day?” Andrian asked.
Lidzi flushed as she thought about what to say. “For half a second, it seemed so natural,” she replied. “I really was grateful that we weren’t fighting for once.”
“Why do we fight?” he asked, putting the empty container on the table in front of them. He caught Lidzi’s gaze in a way that made her avert her eyes.
The rain on the roof began to pour. He might not hear her answer, so she leaned closer and daringly looked at him again. “I’m not sure, really. We just have different points of view, I guess.”
“Or we have something worth fighting about… to keep this from seeming so natural,” he said, leaning into her and touching his lips to hers.
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Buy at: (coming soon to Books2Read, Scribl, LBRY and Lulu - paperback.)
Other Chapters of this set
Birth of the Neví - Chapter 1 on Whaleshares
Name of the Neví - Chapter 1
Mind of the Neví - Chapter 1
Game of the Neví - Chapter 1
Pawn of the Neví - Chapter 1
Maps and Guides
- Kranisis, Varkevand & Ilim City - 830 TCE
- Character Guide and Image Credits
- Calendar and Glossary - for Name of the Neví but these two parts are true throughout.
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