19 Apr 2019

The Elf's Prisoner - Chapter 26

Chapter 26

A quiet night of writing for Nyssa
Inn of the Foxes, Silver Trailings, outside the Realm Below the Mountain
Jyslyn stared out the window.  The rain let up, leaving the cobblestone streets glistening under the light of the moon and of the street lights.  The dark elf sighed.  She longed to go out, to explore Silver Trailings, to go be lost so she could find her way back.  Jyslyn held her ink black hand up so she could see it.  She could cover herself up again, but she was growing tired of hiding herself, even if she understood why.she must.

The dark elf's charge turned in her sleep, letting out a loud snore before she settling back down.  Jyslyn reached out to stroke Wren's honey blonde hair, combing it with her fingers.  A twinge of envy coursed through Jyslyn; she pushed it back down, reminding herself that Wren didn't have an easy life, thanks to the dark elf and her siblings.

Jyslyn paced across the room and back.  Sleep eluded her.  Her body was on its own time, not with the rest of the world's.  She considered trying to exhaust herself through casting spells, but she had already cleaned every piece of clothing that both she and Wren owned.  Any other spell she could cast would cause too much destruction.

Movement outside caught the dark elf's eye.  She stared out the window, peering into the night.  Jyslyn started to dismiss what she saw.  Must have been one of the town guard on patrol, she reasoned, except . . . Jyslyn looked again.  Except the figure skulking in the shadows didn't have any light but was still walking around as if it was midday for the ease he avoided obstacles, an ease Jyslyn shared.  "Outcast Queen," Jyslyn cursed in a growl, "if this is one of your wretched followers, we shall have words."

The dark elf watched the skulker as he, and Jyslyn was positive the figure was a man, hid from a pair of patrolling town guards.  The figure's hand fell to the hilt of his weapon, but never drew it.  Instead, he remained in the shadows, creeping through them behind the guardsmen.  The town guards turned a corner.  After a few moments, the light from their lantern disappeared.  The skulker emerged from the shadows, looking around.  As he looked up, Jyslyn ducked away from the windown.

Jyslyn held her breath.  She waited several moments, each one an eternity, before she peeked back out.  The skulker was nowhere to be found.  Jyslyn stepped out from beside the window to get a better view.  Still no sign of the shadowy figure.  Mind whirling, Jyslyn fell on her own bed.  Part of her wanted to climb down the window and follow the figure.  Another part told her to stay put.  A third reminded her of Kazimier and Wren, both of whom would not react well if she went off on her own.  She tried to rationalize not following; for all she knew, the dark elf she had seen wasn't from the Sundered Chasm.  Even if he was, following alone, clad in just a blanket, was a good way to find herself dead.  She would leave Wren unprotected, and if the skulker was from the Sundered Chasm, word of the young elf would find its way back to Valenza.  Jyslyn's sister was not one to leave a task unfinished.

Still unsure of what to do, Jyslyn unwrapped the blanket, spreading it over her and the bed.  She turned over on to her right side.  Sleep would help, if it ever came.  The dark elf closed her eyes.  She could still see the skulker lurking in the shadows.  Realization came to her.  She was trying to sleep without success.  The skulker was wide awake.  He'd have to sleep during the day, hidden away from the light of the sun.  Jyslyn allowed herself a sly smile.  Having to hide herself away may help her, at least to find out who the skulker was and what he had as a goal.

Jyslyn rolled on to her back.  All she needed was sleep.  In the morning, she had a plan to put into motion.

Next Week:
Splitting up the tasks,

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