The things I didn't do
((Per usual, a few weeks old by now))
It was never his voice I ever expected to hear from the shadows.
Castien had been wounded these last few days. He was raw and he was hurting. He wanted someone else to hurt, too. I understood. I've been there. His subconscious gleefully presented him with the weapons necessary. I was an easy target. He knows me too well, it seems.
We were a small crowd; myself, Jericho, Tylel and his companion, and the hidden Castien. We spoke of Lilliana and her coming trip, and Jericho's worry for her concerning his brother. But it was Castien's words, ringing clear, that shook me: Iloam was going with Lilliana on her 'vacation.'
Actions speak louder than words. Especially when no words are spoken to you.
So I stood there. My foundations rocked and my control cracking and threatening to shatter. Jericho might have seen it. I'm sure Castien did. Tylel and the woman with him probably would not have noticed.
Their conversation continued to turn, spinning around me, and it was only a little later that Castien set the second needle to twist in my frayed nerves.
Demure and uncomfortable she stood before me. Flanked by her Knight, and facing her Guardian. Standing by one man's side, and watched by another. Clearly, deep in both their hearts. But it was Castien’s words, not the awkward position of tension between them all, that drew my attention, sharp and sudden, to her.
She was the one that shot Asarel.
The shape of the scar on his thigh burned through my mind and I saw red. A few centimeters more and she would have hit the femoral artery. The panic welled through me again as my mind had to hit on the thought of losing him. The lance of fear that Castien’s voice had caused when he told me “Asarel has been shot” lanced through me again. He might have been killed. With the thought that I might have lost him, remembered terror turns to rage.
Grace and desire for retaliation curled up my spine like a snake and thousands of voices rushed to whisper in my ears. Soft and sibilant, full of power and chaos, my Shadows spoke for only my ears.
I did not reach into her mind and paralyze her, pulling each of her deepest fears to the forefront of her consciousness. I did not speak a word of pain. Or a word of death. I did not send sickness to grip her core and leave her quaking in agony. I did not seize her mind and wrest control of her own body. I did not make her flee with sudden uncontrolled and primal fear. I did not flay her with the ferocity of my rage and I did not steal strength from her pain.
My hand tingled, but I hardly noticed it as I walked away. I am sure her cheek stung. Sandalled feet carried me smoothly away, back straight and eyes snapping.
And he had the audacity to yell and scold me.
She shot Asarel, and I walked away.
Jericho, in his bearish protection, is a fool if he did not see all the things I did not do. I am a dangerous woman. I am powerful and a presence to fear. He should not forget that.
I will not apologize. I am not sorry for what I did.
I walked away.