The Seeker (High Elf Boyfriend) 2
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Relationship: Male Monster x GN Reader
The Man In The High Tower Part 2
All great things are preceded by chaos.
He had disappeared for a week—or that’s what you believed. Alone and forgotten, like the many books old and worn.
It was as if his entire existence lapsed into nothingness: a blank slate anyone new could use to replace the old. The only thing that felt so odd about it all was the presence of him he left behind.
He was gone, and with it, your guide lending you a hand along the way.
Your trail back from his secluded garden was looped and drawn out with remembering the route back inside, finding the twisted truth that awaited you once back indoors. The library of books had shuddered and creaked as if all simultaneously being opened, the low groan of the heavy doors slammed behind you, its deafening cry continued for awkwardly through the empty tall walls.
Yet, all you did was sit in your usual chair, waiting for him like a lap dog.
Your dinner appeared before he did whilst you were heavy in thought, yet the promise of his return had disappointed you, leaving your eyes to wander; drawn to the higher shelves you needed access to.
When you returned to bed that same night, there was a dreadful feeling settling in your gut, twisting and growing obvious the more you panicked.
The Seeker was good at hiding, you learnt. And you weren’t very good at finding him.
Your days were filled in with lonely training, imagining shadows that eclipsed shelves in dark corners, empty cold spots whenever you would sort through books on their shelves, whispers of your name, clear and drawn, followed by an unexpected breeze, tickling the back of your neck. You thought you would truly go mad if any days would continue, following the same routine day in and night without a glimpse of the man you surprisingly missed.
By the seventh day of his withdrawal, you had found your way to archives, hidden between lonely stacks of large books too big to fit, a pedestal ancient and crumbling, pages upon pages of paper fluttered to the floor in precise disorder.
Someone had been here last. You noted, stepping in closer, too curious for your good.
The book that sat open had no title on the front, its thousands of pages were written in old and no language you could understand. But the one thing you could see were thousands of names, each with a date that took up four columns on each page, reaching to the end and filling impressively.
The last page that was left when you flicked to it was still in need of filling up, dates so foreign to you, they didn’t seem of a time you could remember. And the names—all unique and different to the previous, none common you could pronounce if given a chance to speak aloud.
On the last line, the date and name of the final person, eloquently written:
346 AG, Taeral Elsinahl
There was a following flicker of light that encased the back wall of the small corner, taken over by the rumble of books, some falling to the ground as you were running the other way out before you had the chance to see what else would happen.
You rounded the corner to come back out of the maze of books, bumping into something hard, a small oof wheezing out from you, caught in the arms of the strangers. Strange, they seemed familiar. It was only when you blinked out of confusion, taking in their appearance.
“Why is it you’re always bumping into things?” The copper-haired man softly drawled.
You spluttered for the right words, stepping out from his arms quickly, “What—where the hell have you been? Where did you go?”
“Apologies,” the Seeker dryly added. “I had business elsewhere.”
“Business elsewhere to leave without telling me? For seven days?” You could feel your cheeks rush with blood, head boiling with frustration. If anything, slapping the man in front of you would bring some sense back into his dense brain.
“You seemed to be doing just fine. I checked in on you occasionally.” He was overlooking his library, eyes squinted in concentration. “You didn’t put the books in the right order.”
“My apologies, I had other things to worry about.” You rolled your eyes. “Like how to manage a tower and not run it into the ground.”
The Seeker didn’t answer to you, already reshuffling books in the correct order, arms stacked with them. “And some people think it’s easy.” He sent you a sideways glance, amber eyes shiny with subtle amusement. “No—somehow you managed to do better than anyone has done before.”
Not only had his words curiously piqued your interest, but he had complimented you on your intended isolation. You were ready to spew more questions about the past of the tower and him, but he had already run his mouth quick of his questions. “Speaking of which, what were you doing in archives? They are specifically off-limits.”
“I was trying to enhance my training, and it happened to be unlocked when I tried for the gate.” You nonchalantly answered though you weren’t certain yourself as to why. “I have more questions about the tower… about you.”
He sighed heavily. “Go on.”
Wracking your fingers together, you finally sought the correct words, “That book, in archives, why did it have so many names? And why did they stop?”
His hair swished when he turned to face you properly, eyes glinting with what you could describe as pride. “They aren’t just any names. They were the previous owners of this tower, given the title of Seeker respectfully.”
You stared up at him in awe, puzzle pieces coming together. “So… that last name on the page, that was-”
“Yes, Taeral Elsinahl. That is my given name. I have been in ownership of this tower for the last millennia.”
His name tumbled out your mouth softly, a jumble of words you had no hope in trying to pronounce correctly. “How did you get ownership then?”
“That will be another topic for another day.” Taeral scolded, sleeves billowing and swaying as he walked off. “Come, there is something I must show you.”
Taeral- his name was still something you were trying to remember- had led you through to a part of the tower you weren’t aware of. Winding corridors that didn’t seem to join anything other parts, the west wing was a new part that was all for your eyes to take in.
“It’s beautiful.” The walls were made from obsidian, spiralling upwards and taken by the encrusted sapphire ceiling. It was a small room, only spared with few books, some with covers you could recognise; separated by a large workbench, covered with tools and trinkets.
Taeral was the first to get himself comfortable, signalling you to come further inside. “This is where you will be training next.”
You didn’t mean for the long groan to leave your lips, but by the time the elf had snapped his head to you, eyes narrowed, you knew you couldn’t stop yourself from speaking out. “Training, studying, dinner then sleep. That’s it. Repeated day in and night. Am I any closer to becoming better or are you just using me?”
“You have become so much more.” He stated, revealing his pale hand through his long sleeve, beckoning. “It’s time to put your learning to the test.”
Your head was pounding, eyes red and tired, questions and frustrations froze when from his other hand, he revealed a jagged edge, pointed and curved, silver-tongued and sharp.
You stepped back instinctively, “What—why are you—”
“Time to show me if your training was all retained.” Taeral took a tighter grip with both hands, holding the sharpened edge at arm’s length from him. “Show me if you are meant to be a healer.”
You leapt but staggered, screeches of protest leaving your mouth but too late when he had plunged it, handle sticking out of him as the elf was already crumbling to the ground with a short grunt.
Your instincts pulled you to his wound, applying pressure to the lower part of his stomach, soaked from his blood. Red, pure red. Raw and destructive.
“What—what can I do?”
Taeral’s health had already begun to look worse by the passing seconds, skin wan and frail than usual, eyes sunken and half-dead. His good hand came to grip your bloody ones, squeezing with emphasis. “You’re ready.”
“Yes,” he wheezed, eyes closing momentarily. “I know you can do it.”
You set to gather things, wary to leave him in the as you gathered items surrounding you. The book you remembered from previous searches, gathering them as you moved beside him once more. Taeral was slumped in the corner of the small room, breathing heavily and eyes dazed and glossy. “I’m here, Taeral.” You whispered reassuringly, overlooking him quickly, mind running with too many thoughts. You tried your best to prop him up against the wall, gathering gauze and wrapping around him as best as you could, not yet removing the blade from him.
You silently recited the words and instructions over and over in your head, quietly, eyes flicking from foreign words to his body, hand shakily holding his wound, lightly hovering.
Finally, with a clear, calm voice, you spoke over him. “Instauro.”
You awaited its conjuring, yet nothing came from it. Nothing but blood seeping heavier through his clothes, staining his hands as he spluttered loudly.
“No, no, no. Why is this not working?” You panicked, rereading the words again and repeating it again, and again… until you were kicking the book away in disgust, pulling your attention to the crumpled, still man.
“Taeral, please, stay with me.” Your hands ached, blood bright on your hands, his blood, and you felt your vision blur with tears. “I can’t do this! I can’t! Please, Taeral! Talk to me.”
There was no stopping the days of frustrations pouring out from your eyes and heart, leaning over the elf’s body like a heap of rubbish, crumbling over him protectively. Time didn’t seem real in those moments, overlapping and slowing down—before someone was pulling you out from your panic, a gentle hand shaking you around.
“A slightly chaotic performance… but I’ll give extra points for the sentimentality.”
You scoffed, sitting up, and to your horror, his eyes were opened, neutral and calm, your hands still on him. No words came to your mind, instead, slapping him a little too harshly against his chest, earning a heavy grunt from the elf. “You—you were fine all along? You piece of shit, I thought you were dying.”
“Not very nice words to say.” Taeral sighed, pulling the blade out from his chest with ease, already, the open wound began to close in on itself, white magic pooling through, encasing it until nothing of its existence remained. “It takes more than a flimsy knife to get rid of me.”
When Taeral stood, his eyes were cast with what you could only describe as disappointment. “We will try again tomorrow.”
“No! Not until you tell me what’s going on with you.” You snapped. “You leave like it’s nothing, without telling me. You pull that stunt on me like it's nothing to worry about. Why are you doing this? To put me off from my dreams?”
He was noiseless, steady as an unmoving rock, the unknown breeze returning to touch at the ends of his hair. “I’m preparing you for the wider world, dear.” Your cheeks rouged at the sudden term of endearment, the first of its kind. “I don’t want you to be haunted by what you could witness in this potential career.”
You sniffled. “What do you mean?”
There was dread written on his face, haunting and present, washing over his face. “The horrors, I’ve seen them. What carnage can do to a man, a civilisation. History is always moving forward, but events return like bad omens, staining the land for centuries. That is why this tower shall remain, retaining the events for not one more to happen, or if I’m not around to see its toll, I pray someone else will know.”
He turned back to you, stroking your hair out your face with a neural thoughtful look. “You’re too pure for this world. I don’t want you tainted from its horrors.”
Your mind hurt, your limbs aflame, “Who else knows of this knowledge?”
“Anyone still alive and breathing.” He scoffed wryly. “But for that, I count only two. Myself and—”
“Correct.” He said tautly, before gingerly encasing your hand with his own. “If there’s one thing I do know, it’s of your greatness, the future that awaits you. I can feel it.” The corners of his neutral face pulled his thin lips up slightly, yet his eyes held the most softness of all. “We will get through this. Together.”
You stared down at your entwined hands, flesh warm oddly from what you imagined was from the constant cold and frigid air, fluttering your stomach and hearing the same.
“I know,” you said dejectedly, wiping your fingers of his blood onto your skirt. “I wish to go to bed. There is still much more I need to do.”
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The Seeker (High Elf Boyfriend)
I’m going back to writing longer fics, so bear with me. This will be the first part.
Relationship: Male Monster x GN Reader
Support me on Ko-fi!~ Patreon
The Man in the High Tower
Turn a breakdown into a breakthrough - from ruin and devastation into liberation and renewal.
The air was salty and dry from lack of rain: pungent and heavy, it wracked horror through the pale sky of darkening clouds, blackening like a plague the further it spread. The ground was soft and marshy, collecting marshland water into the soles of your ripped boots, squelchy between your toes the further you walked.
In the sea of mud and nothing but endless barren lands, there was something that no one dared believe: of what spread as gossip between mothers in the town you were raised in. Of a man whose secrets were hidden beneath billowing sleeves and in his ancient bookshelves, who spoke dead languages when no one else remembered. A sorcerer, some said, a God amongst men, others whispered in dread.
No matter what, the disbelief of those of your town had for you when you spoke of wanting to find the man in the hidden tower was enough to either make or break you. You chose the former. If these talks you had been raised to believe were false your entire life had been all for nothing, you could imagine how you would become the laughing stock for weeks on end in your trip of failure back. However long it had been into your travels on foot, the feeling of finding it was dwindling.
Yet, in the distance, among a mirage of nothing more than just fields and hills of mush and dark-green: cows grazing the dry patches they could find, lazily ignoring the darkness of the sky as clouds clustered, a heavy toil of roaring thunder could be heard above you. A storm is rolling in, and swift its arrival will be.
Your pace quickened, staggering over puddles and large fields of mud until it caked your legs past your boots and stained your trousers, dry it would crunch and feel terrible against your skin, but perhaps you could rinse yourself in the rain when it would arrive.
The rain soon joined, thick droplets that splattered in chorus with the deafening victory of thunder above, booming, its drumming moved through you until you could feel the upbeat of your heart, fluttering with every waiting pause.
There was constant drumming that struck within your heart – a flash of lightning that reared you back and set some cattle scattering – within the distance of the heavy rain and unclear view over the horizon, came to you something you thought was a vision.
The outline of the long structure was jagged and unsmooth, seeming similar to the irregular shape of the lead of a pencil, its winding structure of the building was pointing straight up into the eclipsed sky with little protection with half the roof torn off. The rest destroyed by nature, with thick vines intertwined with malicious intention, shaping and bending around the tower.
When you reached its entrance, there was little in guarding the door for anyone to just waltz inside, and inside you did, knocking hastily once on the thick door before shoving your way through. The outside – bare and ruined – was nothing to the inside: a delusion that lied between fantasy and reality.
Its once twisting and ghastly walls were now polished and white marble, decorated from the base to top with shelves of thousands of books, a warped labyrinth of books made into an impressive library. Even its ceiling was oddly restored, miraculously hiding the storm with silver glass painting a different picture to what was outside.
For now, it would do to hold you against the storm raging, but you had other things you were needing to do. “Am I alone here?” You asked amid the deep, towering shelves, your voice echoing through the as high to the glittering sky.
“You called for me?” The sleek yet rasping voice answered and in the blink of an eye, the man no mortal had faced was standing before you, a man who materialised from nothing into the open space, as regal as anything you had seen. Even when standing before you, inches away in his average height, the man still loomed a presence with a shadow as mighty as his tower.
He was an elf from the straight pointing ears sticking out, rare outside the land you grew up in. His hair was pin straight against his back, long and as copper as a summer sunset, with silver beads and garnets that tied in the back with silver chains. His skin was sallow and almost ailing from lack of colour, making his golden eyes stand out against his skin and hair, overall intimidating in appearance. Dressed in simples colours of deep greens with ornate designs, his robes made him move seamlessly.
“I did,” your voice tried to hold some steadiness. “I travelled to see whether those of my town were correct – that you did exist. You’re the one who owns this tower?”
“I am the keeper of this library, master of knowledge, the Seeker. I hold all knowledge, old and new, detailing events and those to come. I hold power over this very tower.” His long swaying cape and robes made him look to be hovering, gliding through the air without even dispersing particles. “That defeats why you stand before me. Speak before I may kick you back out into the rain.”
You told him your name, though you were certain something told you he knew of it already. There was an unsettling aura that he displayed so easily, “Do you threaten to kick out all visitors?” You asked.
“You answer questions by asking your own. It is your only way to appease your anxieties from one’s… interrogations.” The Seeker concluded sharply.
Your face grew hot, crossing your arms uncomfortably, “Or maybe I’m too uncomfortable to answer?”
He hummed, the note itself was tuneful to be sung, “Well, you did travel some lengths to find me, you are not a local, thank the Gods” he corrected. “Though I’m certain the chatter of old crones would conjure up falsehood amongst their kin, to frighten them to remain obedient.”
“Are you calling me a child?” You gritted your teeth, unwavering emotions on what he was thinking of. “In the few decades this tower has stood for, no mortal has found it so easily,” he spoke effortlessly. “What hex have you placed upon this sanctuary?”
Your eyebrows scrunched, “I found it… it was just sitting there in the open.”
The man gave no comment or shift in facial expression, neither impressed nor shocked for his failed attempt at concealing something so important. “If you found it, you must be here for a reason other than accusations and sightseeing.”
Your desperation grew sudden when his threat was spoken, and soon, all direness seemed to be remembered. “Wait—I’ll tell you why I’m here. I wasn’t seeking shelter from the storm, but I heard of your supposed knowledge… I want to be taught by you.”
His eyes were unnerving and almost unblinking when they stared down at you, “Not only a child, but one trying to claim power incapable of humans to achieve.”
Your cheeks grew hotter, “No… but I can learn. I’m a quick learner. Look- I’m capable, it’s just magic, isn’t it?”
“Just magic? You believe it to be so simple?” His question held a haunting undertone to the drawl from his lips. With ease, he pulled back his hand from his sleeves, hands just as pale in colour to the rest of him, presenting a cloud of dark smoke within the palm, sparks as white fire flickering within it. “Tell me, do you think a human would be able to do this with little training? To invoke something you think would be easy to do without a second thought.”
“I think I would be worthy since I found this place that you forgot to hide,” there was a smugness in your tone, crossing your arms. “Maybe you’re not as good as they claim.”
The simple step he took forward was enough to surge through you with the raw authority he possessed, a rookie mistake on your part to your quick temper. “You come to my tower, accuse me of not being skilled in my knowledge,” he said incredulously. “My, humans have not changed.”
In a heartbeat, there was a surge of movement, making you stagger forward, a rush of cold brushed against your face when you raised your arms to brace yourself, sloppily halting to an end. You staggered back, looking back over your shoulder, seeing the very entrance you had once opened, the Seeker standing in the doorway, arms pulled back and hidden. “I am a kindly man, some may say, others won’t,” he began with a heavy sigh. “But I won’t let you insult my findings and this reservation. Go if you must back to your people, tell them I exist, I’m sure they will believe you.”
The rain lashed at your skin uncomfortably, reaching out in a clumsy sprint. “No, wait!-”
“Forgive me, I’m busy.”
You slammed into the heavy door before you could even get him to hear your response to redeem yourself, the storm outside roared with the wind chillingly biting against the back of your neck, simply trying to shelter yourself from the onslaught wouldn’t be enough for you to catch a cold as bad as the ones in the winter months; to leave fevers to be sweated out and dreams so lucid but real.
Silence. Deadly and cold. Reminding you to be forgotten and everything that surrounded you in the barren wilds.
You slammed your palm painfully into the doors more times you could hope for when you forgot what the word ‘sorry’ sounded like on your lips, hoping that he remained on the other side. “Can’t you at least listen to what I have to say?” Your voice could not dare be as loud as the wind, but you still tried. “I would rather apologise in person to you, but how can I when you’ve sent me away? Can I not prove myself to you?” You pressed your forehead into the wood in downfall, the raindrops trickled like gemstones from your eyelashes, “Why won’t anyone listen?”
The door you had been leaning against felt suddenly lighter, the force made you stumble forward, quickly collecting yourself back up when you realised no rain or thunder could be ringing in your ears. You quickly wiped your tears in shame, looking anywhere but in front of you.
“You said you want to be taught?” The Seeker answered flatly, idly keeping himself distracted with a book and nose in the ageing pages. “Yes,” your voice felt meek, pathetic when you felt so judged. “I want… I want to become a healer.”
The slamming of a book startled you when you found the high elf had placed it away, the old leather book moving on its own back to its original place on the shelf with the many others. “You will not judge my principles, my teachings and lessons?”
You chewed on your bottom lip, “No.”
“Then I shall teach you as much as humanly possible. Your training starts tomorrow. I would suggest you rest now, bed and a meal will be with you shortly.”
You went to open your mouth to ask where you would sleep but the Seeker had already clicked his fingers and you were sent into a completely different part of the ever-expanding tower, a hallway of rich golds and browns, many doors leading with no exit. The door you were standing in front of seemed to do for now.
On the first night in a different bed, you didn’t sleep at all, waking up dishevelled and unkempt, receiving a sigh from the Seeker, already pristine and dressed in a different outfit; robes of royal purple, somehow flattering his unnatural eye colour.
He showed you the main library, told you of all the books and every subject he seemed to know knowledge of, droning on and on about nothing you could understand: from languages to the geography of the land and what it was, it seemed to never end. This repeated for who knew how many days, losing count on how you were surviving.
By the middle of the day, you were worn and building a headache, dull yet aching. There was little to eat to help you concentrate, the Seeker had given you a plethora of books of his disposal to read for the last hour, but you found little of your time going into reading each page.
You shut the chapter you were on with a heavy grunt, heavier than you expected, drawing the elf out from his readings, the rim of his golden eyes staring up from you without having to move his head.
You thrummed your fingers on the desk excessively, “So… are you a God?”
“A God cannot hold mortal properties, nor shall a human be bestowed with powers of the almighty.” He said, pulling away to stand. “That is balance, and in the universe, balance and chaos are two pillars, holding everything together. If one falls, the other must follow.”
“Can’t you just push one back up again?”
He seemed amused by your naïve questions. “Although I am the one of knowledge of this world, I cannot interfere with what I find or store. I can only hope that the knowledge will be used when the time is needed.”
There was a flash of white, and you felt a shift in your body surging you forward, making you stagger. Before you, the map of the room changed, and now replaced with thousands of books was a chasm below you, reaching to a pit with no end nor edges to support onto, empty and longing for another victim. “What are you doing?” You gasped, trying to retreat backwards, when the seat and table disappeared, finding nothing but the small ledge you stood on, your body swaying no matter you tried staying still. From the opposite side of the chasm stood the Seeker, swaying lightly in the thin air. “Think of yourself as the one holding everything, if you dare think of yourself as unable, you will sink.”
You squeezed your eyes tightly shut, trembling rushing through your body. “It’s too high, I’ll fall.”
“You won’t if you think like that.” He was beside you in a second, an unexpected gentle hand coming to rest against in your own, leading your forward but when you halted, he stopped himself, the call for your name was cooling from his mouth. “Do you trust me?”
“Then walk,” he guided, and with small steps with eyes shut, his hand was warm and soft as you felt the rush of wind blew up, flying around your hair when you felt the rush come to your stomach. “You can open your eyes now.” He whispered.
When you did, it was bright and open, the chasm was still as large and daunting as when it appeared in your eyes, a drizzle of saltwater fell on your face, a smell rich and familiar. You exhaled, deeply taking it all in. “Are you afraid?” The Seeker had asked after some time.
“No,” you spoke gently. “I think it’s quite remarkable.”
Your days endured with learning and improving bit by bit, seeking out the properties of metals and drawing out gold in hopes it could prolong better life or immortality. There would be days that you would leave with burns and scrapes, curses that you learnt from your books of long gone that the Seeker had a hard time in allowing you say when you got something wrong, but overall, your teacher had been a quiet, aloof man, who hid lots and said little by little.
“Do you have a family?” You had asked when the courage was barely there and you found little patience in not knowing anything of him. The Seeker found little to do whilst you worked, but always seemed to be around whenever you had questions, appearing by your side and ready to answer.
His copper hair was the first thing you saw when he was beside you, thinking you had a question addressed to the turning of gold, when he straightened up again, resuming the stiff posture. “Does this have anything to do with your pages?”
“No… but I’m curious. You don’t say much about anything but of your books.” You shrugged. “Just thought you’d be a man with hundreds of stories to be told – a man with hundreds of secret wives or something.”
The corner of his wiry lips barely lifted, you noted. “Hundreds of wives?”
“Well, whatever, you know what I mean. Well… do you?”
“I… I wouldn’t feel most comfortable in answering that.” He controlled the flow of everything, the tower and your conversations. “Resume your work, food will be with you shortly when you are done.” He snapped.
You didn’t say much, pretending to continue with your work, all whilst watching him leave through a small door, his posture seeming oddly tense.
By the fifteenth day, you had found him in a crowded corner of books surrounding him, sheltered from the possibility of finding you. His appearance seemed dishevelled, the lack of sleep evident in his eyes, soulless and gaunt. The book in his grip slammed shut, startling quickly before he emerged from the veil he had conjured.
“I must show you something.”
You silently obeyed, folding the page subtly you were on and neatly putting it on the table shut, your seat groaning as you stood but not tucking it in, following after the man who was already walking in the opposite way he entered.
Through the same door he had left through in a familiar discussion, you followed him through, emerging through a jungle of greenery; a greenhouse to be exact, its lusciousness had been overtaken with neglect.
Under a large stone arch by the end of the shrubs and foliage, the trees cut back, flowers growing of all haunting colours. A garden that was as pretty as the ones your grandparents owned, somehow in better shape than the rest. Its scenery was decorated with a lovely pond, filled with fishes with glowing eyes, all different shapes and sizes. When the Seeker stopped walking, you had found him in front of the grey of a woman, frozen with a face so lovely. You watched how the Seeker comfortingly stroked at her knuckles with soft fondness. “This is my wife, Arnarra,” his voice was low, his melancholic eyes trailing up her frozen face.
“She’s beautiful.” You breathed with mesmerisation, turning from her to look at him. “Thank you.”
The high elf’s head swished to look back at you, all ends of his straight copper hair stood up on edge, his eyes wide from awareness. “Thank you?”
“For showing me her. I know she means a lot to you,” you drawled thoughtfully, watching how he gave one last touch to her cold skin, removing himself to withdrawal. “She was half-celeste, Goddess of chance and fate. Falling in love was a chance she had taken so greatly, followed sadly by misfortune she had not addressed to me. There was a high chance she would fall for a mortal, greater for whether she would displease her father. The risk was fateful.”
“But she risked it to love you, doesn’t that tell you something?” You questioned.
His eyes were cast, hardly able to read his eyes, but he was silent as if drinking in your words. He said nothing else as he turned and took his leave, solemnly marching as if in a funeral procession whilst you followed quietly behind a few paces obediently. Beneath the high arch of the entrance of the quaint garden, he stopped so abruptly, with your hesitancy following.
“Promise me something.” His voice was hushed, almost a whisper in the dead air of brushing autumnal leaves. Something stirred within you, hope, perhaps even the potential for the end of the awkward small talk.
You could feel the corners of your mouth lift up before you could even reply, “Yes?”
“Promise me you will not mention her again. Nor of my family.”
You flinched as if struck by him, stopping dead in your tracks, ready to open your mouth to question them, but your own words were trapped in your throat, the occurring memory of the look that was present in his eyes; the most expressive they had been since you had wandered within the walls of his tower.
Yet, you complied, for his sake. “I promise.”
He nodded, as if a burden releasing his body from torment, resuming straightening his back with his arms behind his back forevermore, “I shall have something prepared for you for dinner. I shall see you shortly.” He took his long strides away from the overgrown garden, disappearing once again through the veil of absence that hung so low, leaving you to hear the whisperings that never went away.
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