OKAY SO I AM TIRED AND APPARENTLY I CAN'T COUNT, SMH! THERE ARE ONLY SIX CHAPTERS READY SO SINCE I SAID 7 I WILL WORK ON ONE LAST CHAPTER AND POST IT!
The last thing Arya could remember was falling into that dark pit and then the butcher job Ihsan was doing on her wound. She hadn’t anticipated waking to a real, living breathing dragon. She’d heard tales about them engulfing entire townships with red riders on their backs, but she never would have guessed the alumni were those riders.
Ihsan filled her in on everything she needed to know about her new ferocious friend and she couldn’t wait to show everyone what she was bringing home. She could feel the power in its veins, speaking to her own power. They fed each other.
Arya came to a conclusion during their ride back to Spring Court. She was flung into the darkness because its what the Gods wanted. It’s what Anan wanted. No matter how much she told herself she should have done things differently, she was no match for Alara. Alara would have bested her regardless and she would have died regardless, but the Gods brought them to that cliff leading to darkness. Anan wanted her to find the beautiful dragon beneath her, a dragon she lovingly named Drakor and he roared in agreement with his newfound name breathing fire into the sky. It was beautiful.
They neared the Spring Court a few days ahead of schedule and from the looks of things not a moment too soon. The wing of the home where she and Malich had once shared a bedroom was entirely engulfed in electric currents. In other words, Malich was brooding.
They flew over the house, Drakor casting a dark shadow large enough to eclipse the entire estate. Servants ran screaming, but the Alumni, Dax and Malich hurried out to greet them as they landed, eyes wide and leery of the massive beast.
“Anan’s cock!” Malich gasped.
“Not quite,” Arya smirked, “His name is Drakor and he’s mine.”
“Where did you find such a beast and so far from the Redlands?” Dax asked, taking in the full sight of the dragon.
“I found him in the Seelie Court,” Arya cut Ihsan off. If Malich knew what had happened, he’d tighten the leash on her. Ihsan gave her a pointed look.
“Seelie Court?” Malich frowned, “What in Anan’s name were you doing way out there? It’s a barren wasteland.”
“It’s my home,” Arya informed him. “The moment I stepped foot on that land I-”
“We can talk about that later,” he cut her off, “Take Arya’s beast back to the hills of Tara.”
Dax took a step towards Drakor and he reared back, breathing fire at him. Arya smiled while Dax cursed the Gods and backed away from the aggravated beast.
“He only takes commands from her,” Ihsan pointed to Arya who was grinning like a Cheshire cat.
“May the Gods help us then. Even the devil knows not to give that girl anything more than a domestic animal.” Malich whispered to Dax, feigning a smile. “My love, please command your beast to return with these gents. We have much to discuss.”
Arya’s eyes flicked to Ihsan before sliding to Malich. He noticed the momentary glance at her former love and his temples flared. Oh how she missed his insane jealousy.
Turning to Drakor Arya commanded, “Go with them, do not be cranky and I will join you when I can.”
A grumble sounded in response to her command and he promptly snorted black soot from his nostrils all over her, but at least he obeyed…somewhat…if that’s what you could call bathing her in black, flaky dust.
“And here I thought we were friends,” she replied, wiping the soot from her face.
Drakor obeyed Arya’s command, allowing Dax to climb onto his neck and shot into the sky like an arrow. Dax cursed, bringing another smile to Arya’s lips.
She looked around for Ihsan, but he was already gone. Malich stood waiting, examining her with careful eyes and admiring the view. His eyes lingered in places she knew he longed to touch, but she still wasn’t sure whatshe wanted. In truth, she realized she would never know until she’d had them both.
The servants took one look at her once she entered Asherah’s home and quickly deduced she needed a good soaking. They rushed ahead to start a bath for her and while she peeled her clothes off, she wondered where Malich had run off.
For an hour she soaked in the tub and he hadn’t once come to interrupt or catch a glimpse of her naked body. That wasn’t like him. Something was wrong.
Arya quickly dried herself off, dressed and entered Malich’s room. He sat at the foot of his bed, pensive. Something was indeed wrong.
“I’m surprised you didn’t come to watch me bathe.”
Malich’s pained expression met hers. From the look in his eyes you’d think someone had died.
Arya made a mental note to throttle Ihsan later. “Let me explain.”
“Explain what?” Anger sparked behind his eyes. “How you were thrown off a cliff? Or is it how you allowed Alara to slit your throat and you fuckingdied?”
Yep. She owed Ihsan a thorough arse kicking. “I am here my love,” she cupped his face in her hands and smiled. He clenched his eyes shut and drew in a ragged breath before blowing it out, shaking his head. “Malich…my love…I am okay.”
“No. You diedArya. Ihsan told me everything.” Of course he did…ever the loyalslave. “If it weren’t for that godsdamned dragon pushing you into that water, I’d be buryingyou.”
“Aye, but you’re not.”
“If I find her, she’d dead. I don’t care whom I have to sell my soul to. I. Want. Her. Dead.” He seethed.
“We have a bigger problem than Alara I’m afraid. After she slit my throat and before she threw me off that cliff she whispered something to me. She told me she had no choice, that Kahlem had her son,” Arya informed. She chose to omit the part about the map she still had on her person.
Malich’s eyes slid to Arya’s. He still wanted Alara dead, but Alara had answers Arya needed, and she knew just how to get them.
“There is an old man, Tomich. He’s covered in liver spots and likely to die any day now. Have him brought to me. Unharmed of course.”
“What use would you have for an old man?”
“Alara cares for him. If she knows we have him, she’ll come to us.”
“Then it is done.”
His eyes lower to her lips, his mind contemplating the probability of being able to bury himself inside her. She wants to, but in the end she backs out of his grasp. “For fucks sake Arya,” Malich groans. “Have I not been punished enough?”
“What you did was wrong and now, because of you, he’s attached himself to that girl.”
His brows knit together as he guesses, “Navi?”
“What does it matter? Have you decided where you want to be?”
Arya wasn’t fool enough to think she actually had a choice. He would never let her go and she didn’t want him to. “I want you both,” she spoke boldly.
Malich grimaced at her words before saying, “I’ll kill him before I let him near you and I’m tired of playing this game with you.”
“Then why don’t you say what you’ve been wanting to say to me for moons now, or better yet, why don’t you issue your commandMajii…hisRoyal Highness,” she challenged him.
She was no fool and she wanted him to know it. This choice he was giving her was an illusion. She didn’t have a choice, not one of her own choosing. It would always be what he did or did not allow.
Malich smiled. “You know me too well, young Phoenix.”
Phoenix. Arya hadn’t heard his pet name for her since she was a child. She didn’t know why he called her this, but was glad when he stopped using it. It was about the same time he stopped viewing her as a child. The name was an insult to the woman she was becoming and he knew it.
“So,” she didn’t bother looking at him, “When is our betrothal?”
Another small smile from Malich. She realized while she lay dying on that rock that he knew her about as much as she knew him. He knew in telling her he’d take a bride she’d show up to ruin his plans. He countedon it. The moment she showed her face during that dinner for Kahlem and those under his command to see, she’d sealed her fate as the new Mrs. Jarrah to join the fold. The son-of-a-bitch set a trap for her and she walked right into it. Arya recalled him telling her once; I always get what I want. Aye, that he did.
“Whenever you’re ready.”
“I’ll never be ready, but then again, you know that already so lets not pretend I have a choice. Set a date, make the arrangements and I’ll show up.”
Malich reached into his pocket and pulled out a ring box. He tossed it to her and she scowled at him, tossing it back as she drawled, “I want a realproposal. Bend the knee, add in some groveling for good measure, and after careful consideration I’ll try and have answer.” She wasn’t going to make it easy on him.
He gazed at her incredulously. The nerve she had to demand he grovel. It’s why he fell in love with her she supposed. Malich loved a challenge, the more impossible the better. For all of the power he had between the kingdom he built and the one that accompanied his birthright, nothing aroused him more than to have Arya take that power away…even if it was just for a moment. He enjoyed the wayshe rendered him powerless.
Complying with her demands, he knelt down on one knee and asked her to marry him. Arya slid her eyes to her nails, suddenly finding them more interesting, so Malich tried again, a smirk on his face and adding a bit more groveling. She made him sweat a little before meeting his gaze and smiling. “I accept.”
Malich stood, closed the distance between them and crushed his mouth to hers. He couldn’t get her clothes off fast enough, and neither could she.
He carried her over to his bed, determined to punish her for making him beg and began the onslaught the hardness of him had waged against the center of the folds between her legs. Neither of them lasted very long. Too much time had weakened their resolve.
Malich pulled Arya into his arms, resting his chin the messy curls atop her head. Arya finally glanced down at the ring he’d place on her finger and shot up. “Holy Gods! This ring must’ve cost a fortune!” She gasped.
He simply laughed. “Thankfully, we have a kingdoms worth of coin to spoil ourselves with. But don’t ever make me wait this long to have you again. It’s inhumane.”
Now it was Arya’s turn to laugh. “You survived.”
They both laughed.ns18.104.22.168da2