The tiger's eyes were locked on one another, deep blue and brilliant gold trying to search each other's souls. He could see the shame in hers, the pain she was hiding deep inside. She could see nothing. Those eyes were carefully controlled against her tries to decipher him. She knew it was his intent to not show it, resigned to her choice. He had no intentions of showing his emotions without prompting.
"Talis, Please we need to talk." Kyera spoke first, finally unnerved by the silence and those eyes. He nodded slowly, walking closer to her, his gait uneven from what seemed to be his injuries. Her heart throbbed realizing his pain, emotional and physical and both were her fault. Seeing the desperation in her eyes, his heart softened.
"Yes Kyera, we do." Talis agreed his voice was careful and smooth. She tried to compose herself but… then she stopped. He watched as Kyera dropped her guard. The Princessy demeanor she tried to keep in place had never been her at heart. Her vulnerability had only been seen by a few people, and now he was added into the short list. Kyera's height decreased a few inches as she took a deep breath.
"Talis, I still love Verone. I haven't forgotten about him or moved on. It kills me that even if I come home there will be no one waiting for me. I was too late to get back to help him, but I never wanted to leave him. I blame myself, Talis. I couldn't do anything to help, and I can't change the past." Kyera tried to explain herself, tears gathering in her eyes. Expressing all these things aloud was tearing open the bloody wound in her heart. Her voice was full of emotion and ragged as she fought back the tears. "I know it's my fault." she added bowing her head, hands clenched into fists. Her voice dropped a few levels, filled with sorrow and heartbreak. "I know that it was unforgivable, not being there when he needed me. You lost your brother, your parents lost their eldest son… I know that is bad enough. Now I ask you to sanction a marriage between me and the Fourth prince. I must seem heartless but Talis I swear I am doing this for the good of our people." she added meeting his eyes again. The boy was still quiet, taking in her words. Slight signs of disbelief in his eyes. Kyera's heart cracked once again from a new angle. She had no right to beg forgiveness. She had no right to face him, but for her people's sake she was forced to behave so shamelessly.
"Kyera… your right. You weren't there to help him. He accepted that hunt with me to clear his head because he missed you. We were both worried about you. I blamed you the moment he disappeared. His death in my mind fell squarely on your shoulders, because if you had been there, he never would have died. If he had not been so connected with you, he never would have taken on a tiger like Kan alone. For everything that traitorous cat was, he was strong and fought dirty." Talis agreed, his words spilling out once the dam was broken. Kyera felt the pain wash over her heart, hearing it from his lips was more painful than she could have imagined. However the gentle hand coming to rest on her cheek, and guide her eyes back to his was a shock. She looked at him bewildered. "I know now and have known for a while that it…" he trailed off guiding her eyes to his, keeping a respectable amount of distance between them but making sure her attention was on him. "Verone's death was NOT your fault, Kyera. It was not your failure."
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