I curled up on the cushions in front of the steerage. Even in the lockdown, the music of the city rang true, and I could feel the magic drawing me forward. I knew, intrinsically, that I had made the right decision in coming to New Orleans, even if the city was not my favourite place. I closed my eyes, wrapped myself around the pillows like a tiny dragon clutching her hoard, and fell asleep.
Valen let out a primal yell of joy, and I beamed up at him. I knew that even though I loved him, and he loved me, the likelihood that this union would go ahead would be slim to none. There were so many in the community who were against forward-thinking that it would be an uphill battle. I was not lying though, I would marry him, but I also knew that eventually, he would end up paired with someone in his own class, and I would be left alone. Why then did I say yes?
I watched as my king, my Regis, sighed as if a great weight was settling on his shoulders. “I know that my father asked you to take up Lochlyn’s post.” I hissed with a sudden intake of breath. “I am not going to ask you that, even though it would make me happy.” Valen ran his hand through his hair, and the look on his face was almost sheepish. He was beautiful.
“Good, because that is where the Source is. The magic in this world springs from that location, and I need you to go there. You will find answers to your questions and perhaps a new purpose in your life. Not that the life you are living is not worthwhile, but I know you can be so much more.”