Today’s lyrics come from a song I discovered toward the end of 2016 and have listened to far too many times, and danced to a fair few. So, it was almost logical that Jaidee would come into this story, but it was Balien who took control and who also gave me more pieces of the history of the Wiccad. So now I have another book to write…
For now enjoy today’s tale.
Stay and Break My Heart
Come my love
our worlds would part
The gods will guide
us across the dark
Come with me and be mine my love
Stay and break my heart
Jaidee had been singing half the night but it was this single verse that stayed in Balien’s head. She slept in his arms now, exhausted from her performing. She always gave so much, she did in all parts of her life. And she gave as much to Balien as she could.
He had not known a woman like her since his beloved Amagra, Melusina, had been taken from him. He thought he might never love again, he had known his One, and yet he held in his arms a woman who he would give his life to, his life for.
And she could never be his.
He knew that Jaidee cared for him, that she held love in her heart for him. But there was already a name inscribed upon her heart. Kelsen. Balien had known this since the second time he had met Jaidee. The first time his hunger stirred by the magic in her blood had not left room for any talking and she had fled. The second time, Balien had rescued her from an assassination. She had been weakened by their escape and he had kept his hungers at bay to watch over her. It had been a long time before their paths had crossed again and now here they were.
“Stay and break my heart.”
She would not stay, she could not. She was a Bard who never stayed long. She was a woman who could not give him a life.
And yet, Balien, feared Child of the Night and True Born of the First, could not bring himself to stop hoping that it might be different.
He knew it would not. He could sense the mark of Kelsen on Jaidee now that had not been there when first they met, she might not realise it, but she had chosen Kelsen as her Amagrad. Balien could only ever be second.
“I thought fangers were meant to not draw breath in their death, and you breathe loudly.”
“My apologies, Lady Fae. And I am sorry my still requiring air woke you. I believe you think of the Lesser of the Children of the Night, those whose bodies are more dead than alive. I have not tasted death as the turned must.”
Jaidee rolled over and looked up at Balien. She would be banished by the Council of Elders if they knew she shared a bed with an enemy of their people. Though at least she understood now why they were seen as an enemy. It was not simply because of their desire for the blood of her people for their sustenance, but an ancient reason. The Children of the Night knew the truth of her people, and that was something the Council did not wish any Fae to know. Absolute control is harder to keep when the people are educated.
“Can you not sleep, or do you not require sleep?”
“I need sleep, Lady Fae. I find my company simply too enchanting to let slumber take me.”
“So eloquent. Perhaps you should be the Bard,” Jaidee murmured. She yawned and stretched and relaxed against the bed, nuzzling at her pillow.
“I fear my dancing skills would set my audience to laughter, rather than spellbinding them as you do,” Balien said but Jaidee was already asleep again. He wondered if she would even remember this on waking up.
He watched her sleep for a while and then decided he should move so he did not wake her again. Slipping from his bed, Balien made his way downstairs to pen a letter to his father. He had promised Jaidee he would ask if she could visit him. It was long since the first Child of the Night had entertained any guest. Still, Balien would ask. Jaidee wished to know all the truths of the Ancients, of her people. She wanted to know answers to questions that Balien could not help her with, and though it was treason that might get her killed, Balien would not deny her the truth. It felt as though Jaidee must know these stories. Not simply because she was a Bard, but because she had a place in them.
Balien did not know what that place was, but he had known this world long enough to know that there were powers at work, souls born to destiny. He wondered if Jaidee had a place in the stories of the Wiccad. He thought perhaps she did.
His own wife had been called to the task of the Wiccad many years ago, in Carcossona, perhaps that was the thread that ran between Melusina and Jaidee. The two women would perhaps have been friends had they crossed paths at the same time.
He had first met Jaidee before he had known Melusina, and he had not seen her again until after his wife had been taken from him. Along with their newborn daughter. His son lived, and still wished little to do with Balien. Perhaps Jaidee with her empathic powers could help heal the rift between father and son.
It could not be made worse.
Balien closed his eyes and leant his elbows upon the desk. His letter unwritten. He suddenly felt the weight of his years and the many to come. The darkness would begin to rise again, Galen, his brother had been busy elsewhere and The Order had been quiet these last few decades and it could not last. Balien sighed and hoped that Jaidee would not become another casualty of this war. Nor a casualty of his feud with his brother. So much conflict, so much death and pain. Was it any wonder he was so drawn to the brilliant light that was the Fae Bard.
Feeling weary, Balien made his way back to his bed and the blonde beauty within in. She cuddled close when he got in and though it was another name she murmured, he did not resent her for it. Perhaps one day that foolish assassin might remove his head from his backside, but if not or until then, Balien would enjoy the light that Jaidee brought to his life.
What else could he do?