Madjael, Namün, Cirad, Harion
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Date Posted: 17:16:31 10/24/02 Thu
"Madjael! In the name of Arda - I know you're here!"
Madjael felt Namün begin to break away at the man's call, but he pulled her gently back to him, trying to make the moment stretch. He couldn't get over the fact she hadn't stopped him. It was hard not to read to deeply into things sometimes and this was definately one of those times. But he knew that Namün would never feel exactly the same. She'd always want more than he could offer her.
"MADJAEL!" he heard the man shout again, anger clearly evident in his voice. A familiar voice. Of course, thought Madjael, It's Cirad. Always had a habit of turning up when you want just a few more moments.....
He pulled away from Namün gently, studying her face intently as she slowly opened her eyes. Gods, her eyes. The thought passed in and out of Madjael's mind so fast he couldn't stop it. He loved those eyes.
Without taking his eyes from her face, Madjael finally replied to Cirad's shouts.
"I'll be out in a minute Cirad. Please - patience is a virtue." And I want it now he thought dryly, the same reply he'd said to his mother whenever she'd said that to him as a child.
He leaned down and kissed Namün on each cheek. "Goodbye fair lady," he grinned shyly as he always did when imitating high society, "Until next we meet."
She nodded gravely, understanding in her face. "Take your own advice Madjael- patience."
Without warning, she reached up and pulled his face down to hers, pressing her lips against his in a firm kiss. Was that a promise, or a goodbye? she wondered briefly to herself, inwardly smiling at the stunned expression on his face. She pulled away wordlessly before either of them had time to change their minds. That was far enough for tonight.
Unfortunately though, her exit was hindered. On pulling open the door she immediately found herself face to, well, shoulder, with a man she vaguely recognised from the couple of tournaments she had attended. He looked down at her, then across at Madjael with an easily recognisable look on his face.
Oh no Namün thought, a blush mounting over her bronzed cheeks at his rosy glance.
"Ahem," Madjael raised a highly annoyed eyebrow towards Cirad, "Namün, this is Cirad. Cirad, this is Namün. You were supposed to wait for me outside." He stressed the last word, trying to get Cirad to understand that what he was seeing was, a - not what it looked like, though very close, and b - none of his business.
"We were just leaving. Namün, shall I walk you back?"
She glanced again at Cirad, then back to Madjael. "Are you sure that's a good idea?" she demurred, although frankly, the idea of walking home alone through the darkened alleys terrified her.
"Don't bother" Cirad remained expressionless. "We've been ordered to report for Guard Duty on the city walls." Madjael shot him a glance of pure scorn. "Guard Duty? But I'm a captain! Why should I do such a meaningless chore?"
Cirad shrugged "King's orders." He glanced curiously at Namün, wondering how true the rumours were.
"Besides" he continued. "If I've got to do it, then I'm not letting you skive out of it."
Madjael pulled himself up straight. "Technically Cirad, I outrank you. Therefore I see no reason why you should be able to force me to follow orders that I don't wish to do."
Cirad felt his anger welling up again. This was one of the reasons he had always disliked Madjael, he was so infuriating.
"The difference in rank is so slight that only you would mention it." he burst out. "Anyway, the only reason is because you were careless enough to let your Captain die in the last skirmish. I managed to keep mine alive!"
Madjael didn't seem to have a ready reply for this arguement. He turned to Namün,
"It seems I'm stuck with it" he said bitterly. "I don't want you walking by yourself though."
"Don't worry about it." she attempted to reassure him, trying to push the images of men lurking in shady corners from her mind. She smiled weakly. "I'll be fine."
Madjael wasn't fooled. He turned to Harion still standing near the door.
"Could you walk her up to the palace?" he asked.
Harion sighed and reluctantly put thoughts of returning to bed out of his mind. "If it means that you'll all get out of here." he said at last. "Do you know what time it is?"
"That's settled then." Cirad started to herd Namün and Madjael towards the door.
"Wait." she hesitated, catching hold of his sleeve. "Why are they putting warriors on guard duty? I thought the common soldiers normally did that. Is something wrong?"
The glances that the two men exchanged over her head did not go unnoticed.
"What aren't you telling me?" Namün asked sharply. "Cirad?"
He ignored her. "Madjael..." she appealed.
Madjael paused, not sure what to say to Namün. There had been talk of war recently, perhaps something had happened in his absence from the castle. He should really be getting back. There was only so much time a man can spend being sentimental in one day, after all.
He shook his head towards Namün. "It's nothing to worry about just yet. Um, Harion?" He addressed the blonde young man, "I'm sure the lady will graciously accept your offer to accompany her home. If she doesn't then I accept for her. Cirad," he beckoned, "let's go."
And with that Madjael walked out of the small room, pausing only for a second to glimpse Namün as he strode out of the tavern.
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