Faylin did not remember falling asleep, but when she woke up, she felt warm and oddly enough, well rested. There was serene stillness. She could even hear the faint sound of crickets and the wind blowing through the trees. Sighing, she rubbed her cheek against the soft fur. How strange, I can't remember hav-...
Faylin's whole body went tense as she remembered the events of the past hours.
She flipped open her eyes and immediately sat up, taking a quick look around her. She was inside a tent and to her utter relief, alone. How could I have been so careless? She asked herself; the things that man might have done to her while she slept. The thought horrified her to no end.
She choked and felt her stomach lurch. No! Faylin started tearing up at the mere thought of that man breaking so easily the vows of chastity she had so desperately clung onto. She embraced herself, rocking back and forward trying to form some kind of comfort.. All my devotion; and now... a dirty woman used to satisfy overpowering carnal desires. I'm disgraced.
"O Lord, forgive me! Be merciful of me for I have sinned!" Faylin sobbed, tears falling down her soft face. "Save my soul! I have become as sinful as Eve!" Oh, how she wished Mother Agnes were there to guide her. She missed her sisters and Father Mannus. Dead. All of them. For the first time she seemed to realize that she was alone in the world.
So absorbed she was in her own thoughts that it made her completely unaware of the crunching sounds, the sticks breaking with each step nor did she see the man holding the flap open, an eyebrow inquiringly raised.
"Give me strength... hear my prayer, O Lord!"
"Quit with the crying!..."
Faylin gave a startled jerk at the sound of his voice and scrambled back away. He stood tall now, watching her with those startling blue eyes.
"You'll wake the whole camp with your senseless chatter." he said, gritting his teeth. Not bothering to hide her irritation, Faylin sneered at him. Her hands clenched, holding the fur close to her chest. Although she didn't want him to come any closer, he still did.
Giving her a dark half-smile, he strode inside, taking notice of how she covered herself despite being fully clothed. He took off his cloak and threw it aside; his gaze, one of vast invincible strength that sent shivers down her spine was still fixed on her. She averted her eyes when he started taking his tunic off. Don't look Faylin. Don't look at his body!
Then, he spoke.
"If what troubles you is your virtue, then there is no need to worry. I don't take pleasure in bedding unconscious women. Nothing happened between us, yet" was the blunt reply.
A burst of relief blossomed in her chest. Nothing had happened...Nothing had happened! Faylin swallowed, wiping away the tears she had shed. The small moment of happiness was short lived, however, as she remembered what the heathen had said. 'Yet'. Unconsciously, her lips pressed into a thin line. Faylin's hazel eyes looked ready to shoot daggers in his direction as she lifted her head.
Faylin took in the sight of his bare chest and abdomen, the way the muscles of his back flexed and tightened whenever he moved. Some scars covered his magnificently carved upper body; they seemed old and must have been incredibly painful. She could not take her eyes off him; it was the first time she'd ever seen a male's body part as He had created it.
It was then that she noticed. Blood coursing from beneath the gold arm band on his wrist. Horrified, she jerked her head up, looking at where the wound was. It was dripping from the long cut in his arm. He'd been wounded, but she'd not even noticed.
She wanted to heal him...
Faylin frowned; back in the monastery, she along with her sisters learned the ways of natural healing so that they could treat the sick.
Looking at his wound, instincts must have taken over; it was the only explanation! She was conflicted, torn between two things. Wish for his quick death or 'God help me', she thought.
Without thinking she bluttered out "It would be better if you pour wine into the wound." She blushed when she saw that she had his attention; the hand holding a cloth close to his arm paused in mid-air. He raised an eyebrow "It might get infected if you just wrap a cloth around it..."
Suddenly a hearty laugh rang out from his throat. Faylin's face turned scarlet and she scowled, loathing rising deep within her at the sound. Her delicately arched eyebrows came together; was he mocking her?
He grinned widely at her reddened cheeks before walking up to her. Her pulse quickened as he crouched down in front of her and grabbed her chin, bringing her gaze to his. "You amuse me." She forced herself not to back away from his touch. "You defy me yet you care. What are you playing at, woman?"
"Unlike you, I have a heart! While your black soul will rot in Hell, He will forgive my sins." She spat, not caring whether she was offending him or not.
"Well, He must not be doing a good job seeing as you are at my mercy" He spat back, shooting her a mocking smile. Her eyes watered and she tried to free herself from his grip but his grasp just tightened. "Tell me your name," he demanded.
"Faylin" she replied, preventing the unexpectedly blow she knew she would have received from his black temper; his actions on the ship were a reminder. It was a wonder she was still alive, she expected him to be hostile with her after the stunt she had pulled.
"Tore " he said, before standing up. "That's my name"