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5.57% The Tiger Within / Chapter 39: The Garden Part 1

Read The Tiger Within - Chapter 39 online

Chapter 39: The Garden Part 1

Verone walked quietly into the yard. It was a bit overgrown now, since Kyera's workload had tripled and she had less time to come home and tend the garden. So many years had passed, but she still put effort into taking care of her brothers final resting place. The beautiful garden had always been the pride of the Middle brother. The siblings had spent many hours making it into something to be proud of it only seemed right to lay them to rest here. A pang of guilt stabbed into him as he realized how far behind the care of this place had gotten. Just too much work for one person alone.

He could see where branches had been trimmed and weeds had been pulled recently. It was obvious someone worked in the gardens mere hours ago. Evidence that she had been here through the night. The pulled weeds were still fresh and the soil had not settled. He made a mental not to come back and tidy up when when they were done with training.

Walking toward the stones, he stopped at the feet of the graves, kneeling down and bowing his head. With eyes closed he made another promise to the fallen. He could almost feel them standing at his side in the place they once played. Memories of picking herbs and eating fruits danced through his mind's eye. It felt so long ago, a simpler time. The melody's of laughter he sorely missed would never grace this yard again.

Rising from his knelt position, he met a pair of golden pools watching him from mere feet away, Kyera looking back at him from her nest between the stones. There was a soft vulnerableness to her face. It was easy to see she had just woken up, and judging by the youthful innocence of her expression, he was glad he had Talis wait beyond the garden's edge. She didn't show this side to very many people, and it would not have done to have him intrude on her private moments. Verone tilted his head a bit and offered her a soft questioning smile, hoping to invite her to speak.

On the other hand, Kyera looked out from between the stones. Having heard a muttered prayer she had awoken from her slumber, surprised to see the moon high in the sky. She had only meant to rest for a few hours. Her body however and the stress of the last few days had other ideas. The nearness of her brothers had soothed her enough to rest. The winds of Change were dancing across the night sky, a warning from her father's realm. She wondered for a moment if these warnings were a blessing or a curse…

She stretched her arms high over her head, fingertips brushing cold stone as her pointed toes reached for the stone below her. The familiar feel of shadow energy forming a thin shield over the head stone was as comforting to her as it was frightening to others. As she finished, Kyera looked up at the stone her fingers were caressing a small smile curved the corners of her lips. The letters spelling Keenan were carved in a child's hand. Her fingers ached remembering how many times she had struck them while chiseling their names into each stone. Some of her own blood still left in small smears near the edges. She sat up, peeking out from the gap between two stones.

She was less surprised to see a familiar figure kneeling nearby paying his respects to the soldiers that protected her dreams. As Verone lifted his head, their gazes met and she was lost in his eyes. The ageing of his features from the 13 year old little boy of her dreams to the 24 year old man of today was startling. Not for the first time, she felt a pain in her chest, wondering what her brothers would have looked like, Kendrick was his age…

"Hey Kyera, I didn't wake you did I?" Verone asked after a few moments, realizing she was lost in thought once again. Not that he could blame her. She snapped out of it, flashing him a warm smile.

"Yea, I guess I was more sleepy than I thought. Why did you come looking for me?" Kyera asked standing up and dusting her dress off. She ran her hands through her hair to remove any sticks or debris that might have twisted into her hair. He chuckled walking over, taking her by the shoulders and gently turning her around.

Once she complied, Verone began picking stuff out of her hair, taking the ribbon from her hair and letting the braid unravel from its messy confines. A sigh and light chuckle escaped his lips as he began reweaving her hair.

Valinteena Valinteena

Hello all,

Here is today's first chapter. I hope you enjoy it. A moment of sweetness.


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