Ensnared: A Scene from Perilous Bliss
In this post, I am sharing a powerful but quiet scene of grief, rage, and guilt from Chapter One of Perilous Bliss: Book Three of The Star Seer’s Prophecy trilogy.
In FIERCE BLESSINGS, (Book Two), Kyr and Medari, a village healer, are both captured by the mad ex-Slave, Gauday, and tormented in different ways for months. Kyr is subjected to Gauday’s vengeful punishments. Blackmailed by Gauday’s threat to murder his family, Medari must keep Kyr alive to suffer further torture.
In PERILOUS BLISS (Book Three), they have been freed by the Warrior Mage, Rajani, and are traveling toward Rajani’s home, Ravenvale. They have now reached Medari’s village, and are in Medari’s home where they discover that Medari’s family was slaughtered months ago. They are horrified to realize they were both ensnared by Gauday’s lies in a vicious web of suffering – and still are.
Scene from Perilous Bliss:
Chapter One – Entanglements
“What are you doing?” Kyr blurted out in surprise. Medari set a bottle down, too carefully. Kyr could see grief and fury under strong rein in the healer’s overly precise movements, the rigidity of his face.
With grim quietness, Medari said, “There’s nothing for me here, now. May I come with you to Ravenvale?”
“Of course you can, but…. Are you sure that’s what you want? To leave your home, your friends, your village?”
Medari’s tone was deadly flat. “Yes.”
Taken aback by his lifeless tone, Kyr asked carefully, “May I help you pack?”
“No, thank you. I must do this myself.” Medari looked at him, a terrible anguish in his eyes. Kyr knew many kinds of suffering, but not this kind of devastating loss. He wanted to apologize for being the pretext for Medari’s abduction, for the existence of such evil as men do to one another, for the possibility of such agony in the world.
Very gently, Kyr said, “I’ll wait for you outside.” Medari nodded and went back to his methodical packing.
Kyr returned to the small, somber graveyard in the back of Medari’s home and stood there in the soft evening light, fists clenched, furious that Medari should suffer so. His gut churned with loathing for Gauday and his cronies who had carried out his despicable orders. Kyr’s curse-scars—inflicted on him by Gauday—flared up, pulsing with a craving for bloody retribution.
But then, in his mind, he heard Gauday laughing. Kyr shuddered, feeling the sticky strands of hatred and vengeance entrapping his soul. No! I can’t let him win! I can’t leave the hard path—not after how hard I struggled to keep from hating Gauday. He knelt before the graves, and once again strove to release his anger, to soften. He looked up at the night sky, now scattered with stars. “Zhovanya naralo,” he whispered. “Zhovanya forgives us all.”
Kyr jumped, and looked up to find Medari standing over him. “No,” the healer repeated in an implacable voice, “I can never forgive those who took my family from me for no reason. I cooperated with them, and kept you alive to endure hellish pain and degradation—all for this,” he growled, gesturing at the row of graves.
“Gods, Medari, I’m so sorry! I would rather have died than see this happen. Listening to your stories at the fort’s infirmary, I imagined that your family was the one I never had.”
“You’re the only one who survived.” Abruptly, Medari reached for something at his waist.
Kyr froze. Medari stood over him, the knife in his hand glinting in the starlight. Merciless gods! He must blame me for being the cause of this tragedy—for being alive when his family is dead. Kyr choked back a sardonic laugh. Am I to die now, after surviving all that Gauday did to me? Ah, why not?
Anguished with guilt, he bared his throat to the knife.
Book Three of The Star Seer’s Prophecy trilogy
Publication Date: January 31st, 2018
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