Day 14: FREE DAY! Write any scene you want!
Trey looked back over his shoulder. Hanna was following along quietly. He smiled at her, a gesture that she warmly returned.
“This way,” he said, turning his attention back to the path that twisted through the dense forest.
“Where are you taking me?” Hanna asked.
“A special place,” he said.
Hanna rolled her eyes. That seemed to be his preferred response. It didn’t tell her anything useful.
Soon the sound of flowing water came to her ears. A stream was nearby. The sound grew louder, and she realized they were approaching a small waterfall.
They stepped into a clearing. In front of them was the waterfall that Hanna heard. It stood perhaps ten feet tall. At its base was a deep clear pond. The area was open around the pond. The sun shown in between the trees, lighting up a luxuriant patch of grass.
It seemed that this special place had been shared by many people over the years. At the moment, however, Trey and Hanna were the only ones there. Trey guided Hanna to the sunlit spot. He spread out a blanket upon which they both sat down. He smiled at her broadly.
“This is a lovely place, my Lord,” said Hanna, also smiling.
“Oh, Hanna. Call me Trey,” he murmured.
Hanna blushed. “I forget.”
Trey leaned close to her. “My love,” he whispered.
“Love,” she echoed.
He kissed her softly. “Love,” he said again, as he settled back. He reached out and took her hand. “Aye, I came here often as a boy, ever hoping I could get Rose out here too.” He rolled his eyes flirtatiously.
Hanna clicked her tongue. “Bad boy,” she teased.
“Aye, but I kept her honest, you know.”
“Something about this place is just so calming,” he said, leaning back on his elbows. He shifted again and leaned his head against her arm. He shut his eyes and savored her scent. This felt so good to him.
Hanna stroked his hair. He was, in the end, a good man. He had a good heart, though he did have a tendency to be overly aggressive and oftentimes came off as brooding and angry. Somehow, she had found a path past his darkness and met this deeply loving man.
She sighed. It was difficult for her. She had a husband – somewhere – and felt that to love another would be unfaithful. However, she was quite certain that Davin was lost to her. If he lived, he was out of reach. She didn’t think she’d ever see him again. She was torn. Should she love Trey and abandon Davin? Or should she be faithful to Davin and keep Trey at bay.
Trey knew of her dilemma. It saddened him. He had finally begged her to simply let him love her. If she would let him love her, he would help her seek her husband. Trey would never force her to break faith with Davin. He would accept that she would never be fully his. This he agreed to because he loved her that much. To be able to take comfort in her arms when he needed it was worth the lack of complete monogamy. He knew that what he needed was her – the woman, the friend, the companion – not her – the body, the fornication, the sin. It wasn’t to say he didn’t want that, but only that it was not what he truly needed.
He reveled in her touch. Her fingers in his hair swept the stress of leadership out of him. Her hands on his cheek pressed life into him. At this moment, he felt complete. He sighed. He felt whole and safe, a way he hadn’t felt since before Rosaline was lost. At this moment, he felt as if he could handle his future as King of Herongarde – so long as Hanna was at his side.
They sat for a long time saying nothing. Hanna enjoyed watching the water flow over the stones. Trey alternately watched the water, then watched her. He pulled a bladder of wine and a couple of cups from his satchel and poured them each a drink. He her a cup as he held up his own. “To everlasting peace and love.”
“Peace and love,” Hanna echoed as she tapped her cup against his. They drank together. He leaned close to her again, pressing his lips against hers. She returned his kiss, enjoying the texture of his mouth against hers. After a few moments, they separated. Trey gazed upon her, his eyes full of adoration.
“One day,” he whispered.
Hanna smiled. “Yeah.”
They sat together the better part of the afternoon, occasionally chatting, kissing, and wrestling a bit. They drained the entire bladder of wine and completely enjoyed each other’s company.
A distant bell rang out. The evening meal was prepared. They would be late to the table. They exchanged knowing glances.
“Oops,” said Hanna.
Trey grinned. “We should hurry.”
“Aye,” Hanna agreed.
Hastily, they collected the items they had brought and stuffed them back into the satchel that Trey carried. He slung it over his shoulder and looked at Hanna.
“Shall we go?” said Hanna.
Trey stood close to her, taking each of her hands in his own. He bent and kissed her hard. Passion filled him for a fleeting moment, which she returned with an equal fury. All too soon, they stepped apart again, knowing that they could not continue though they both wanted to.
Trey looked on her with a smile. “I love you, Hanna.”
“And I love you Trey,” she replied reaching up and stroking his cheek.
Trey drew a deep breath. “We must return.”
“Yes, I know.”
Trey stepped back from her, looking rather sad. Then a grin spread across his face. “I’ll race you!”
Trey turned and starting running back along the path. Hanna took up pursuit, and they both laughed as they jogged back toward the Castle keep. For a moment, the world’s pressures were lifted from their bodies. They both felt terrific.