Part Seven

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Part Seven of You Will Find Your Way
With the way she ended up on this world, Dallas is understandably skeptical about returning home.

Somewhere Else, In Another Time

“Go!” Mathias shouts after he plunges his sword through what’s probably the neck of the last creature, extinguishing its flames as it falls limply to the forest floor with a splat. “More are coming.”

Dallas shoves her short sword back into the sheathe at her hip, follows Mathias deeper into the forest. They sprint over long-dead trees and stray branches until her exposed skin tingles with the signal that they’ve crossed the invisible border that wraps around their protected lands.

Also, the place that Dallas has been avoiding since she learned that Maris has decided to send her home.

After they slow down and eventually come to a stop in a clearing occupied by even clusters of olive-colored tents, Mathias places a heavy hand on her shoulder, “This isn’t the time to run off again,” he says, pointed, and Dallas snaps her mouth shut, because that was the plan, after all. “She’s coming.”

“How do you always know that?” She grouses, glares when Mathias offers her a pointed grin.

With a snort, Dallas shoves her blade into the loops on her back, shrugs his hand away before she goes for her belt, unties it and places the sword into his outstretched hand.

A tall, stately woman with her hair coiled artfully around her head emerges from one of the tents and crosses the clearing with an even, easy pace. Somehow, she manages to look neat and poised while wrapped in leather battle gear, a look Dallas could never achieve no matter how hard she tried.

Maris was just one of those woman who could somehow look beautiful no matter the situation, and Dallas tries not to be bitter about it.

With a sigh borne of the sudden exhaustion that hits her like a truck, Dallas looks at Mathias and pulls the blade off her back again.

It’s not glowing anymore since the beats are out of range from the encampment, and she flips it in her hand once more before holding it out, “I guess I won’t be needing this anymore.”

Favoring her with a pointed look, Mathias looks down at the blade and shakes his head, closes her fingers around the sharp, shining weapon with a tanned and scarred hand, “You should hold on to it. For luck. And for whatever good memories you have of this crap heap.”

Dallas purses her lips to keep from laughing, even though it really is funny, and Mathias lets her hand go so she can put the blade back in its home at the base of her spine, “I think I might miss you,” she mutters, stubbornly keeps her gaze trained to the ground between their feet.

Mathias puts his hands on her shoulders, squeezes them before he draws her in for a hug that steals her breath, “You know you will,” Dallas hears the smirk in his tone as she breathes in the scent of sea salt and smoke that clings to his skin.

A throat clears behind the, and Dallas pulls away reluctantly, as if holding on to Mathias means she’ll get to stay. She schools her features into something that doesn’t relay how annoyed she is and nods her head, “Hi Maris.”

“Are you ready, Dallas?” She asks with a slight inclination of her head, the hands clasped in front of her already starting to glow from powers that even after all these years, Dallas doesn’t understand.

She shrugs, “I still don’t think this is a great idea.”

“And when you wake up tomorrow in your home and safe, you’ll think differently.”

Dallas clenches her jaw to keep from retorting—she knows there’s no way Maris is going to change her mind, she’s stubborn like that, and pissing her off would probably be a bad idea—so she just glowers and shrugs again.

With a small smile that’s probably supposed to make her feel better, Maris holds her hands out, and Dallas hesitates for a moments before she drops her own on top, “I’m going to come out of this in one piece, right?” She asks, unsure.

“I do know what I’m doing, dear,” she replies with a tight smile, and Dallas sees Mathias take a snort step backward as the wind whips up around them.

Dallas frowns, “That’s not an ans-” but she’s cut off when, without warning, Maris drops her hands, places hers on Dallas’ shoulders, and shoves.

Everything goes white, and this is really going to suck.

You Will Find Your Way continues with Part Eight.

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