On Love’s Wings copyright c. 2016 T.A. Chase
“I hope you never cross his path, Miataga. He’s a monster as far as I’m concerned.” Ari snarled.
“He is, but you need to keep your mouth shut. Bad mouthing him can only get you in trouble. You don’t want to anything to happen to Vikex because of your dissent,” Miataga reminded him.
Ari shook his head. “I don’t, but trust me, Vikex can take care of himself. He wouldn’t allow anyone to touch him except me. If it came down to it, he would fly away back to his flock. It would be difficult for anyone to find him.”
“That sounds great, actually. I would love to run away and have no one find me,” Miataga muttered. Leaving his life behind had always been a fantasy of his, if only so he could see the world beyond the walls of the House he lived in.
“Maybe some day I can kidnap you and take you from Sendler,” Ari said.
“You’ve already done that, though you paid for me instead of kidnapping,” Miataga reminded him.
Ari laughed. “You’re right, but maybe I won’t return you to the House. We could hide among Vikex’s flock. I’m sure they’d keep us safe from the soldiers.”
“Hmm…” Miataga let his eyes drift shut as he thought about the possibility of never seeing the inside of the House he’d lived in all of his life.
Not having to deal with clients who use his body without consideration of his own wishes would be wonderful. He relaxed into Ari’s embrace, savoring the contact.
He must have dozed off. When he woke, he was curled around Ari in the bed. Miataga stretched as little as possible, not wanting to wake Ari up. There was a noise outside and Miataga slid out from under the blankets to wander over to the window.
Peeking around the curtain, he spotted a human-shaped shadow moving across the clearing in front of the cabin. He watched as it edged closer then sink into a crouch.
“What are you looking at?”
Miataga glanced over his shoulder to see Ari propped up in bed, staring at him. “There’s someone outside. He—or she—is watching the cabin,” he told Ari.
“How long has he been there?”
Ari climbed out of bed then yanked on his pants before stalking over to where Miataga stood. He looked around the curtain like Miataga was doing. Miataga knew he’d spotted the watcher when Ari tensed.
“Stay here,” Ari ordered then headed toward the door.
“Wait. You’re not going out there to confront the man, are you?” Miataga wanted to know as he grabbed Ari’s arm. “He might hurt you.”
Ari patted his hand. “I’m a soldier, love. I’m pretty good at defending myself. I want to make sure he isn’t going to cause us any trouble.”
Before Miataga could say anything more, Ari cracked open the door then left without letting any of the light from the fireplace escaped and warn the intruder. Miataga continued to stare out the window, but he couldn’t see anything. It was as though both the watcher and Ari had disappeared. He never really believed in any of the gods worshipped in his country, but at that moment, he prayed to all of them to keep Ari safe.