Wings of the Wind

Chapter 6: Visitors

Malia opened her door to find a most unexpected visitor waiting for her. "Kae!" she squealed and threw her arms around him.

"Surprised then I see," Kae replied and held her close. Her long blonde hair tangled around his fingers as he embraced her and the scent of orchids on her assailed his nostrils.

She pulled away and stared at him with her deep green eyes like the sea during a storm, "What are you doing home? I was going to make you a whole feast tonight. You're ruined all my plans!"

"Well I can leave if you'd like," he said innocently and turned to go.

"No-," she began and grabbed his hand but he turned around and kissed as hard and as long as he ever had.

"Now how about that feast?" Kaedin asked once he had let her breathe.

"Well I don't have nearly enough corn meal and no fresh yellowtail. I need to go to the market and-,"

"Can't Lily do it," Kaedin asked with large eyes, "I've missed you for so long, I want to hear about everything that's happened in this little town since I've been gone." He pulled her close and rubbed her nose with his, turning her cheeks a deep red even in her sun-tanned skin.

"Can't I do what?" asked a young girl with hair as long and blonde as Malia's but eyes that were a bright blue instead.

Malia coughed and extracted herself quickly from Kaedin's embrace, "I was wondering if you could run to the market for me, Lily" she said, "I need a bag of corn meal, the kind already mashed, and six fresh yellowtail from the fish market. Here's some money and take your time," Malia finished and tossed her younger sister a bag of silver coins and took Kaedin's hand, leading him as quick as she could down the long hall in the house she shared with her sibling.

Lily sighed and took her thin coat from the wall and walked outside in the direction of the market. "Take my time?" she muttered to herself, "I don't need to. The fish market is far enough away that it will take me the rest of the day to find just these two things." It was late afternoon and the sun was in a position that illuminated everything at just the right angle to put a glare into Lily's eyes. "That damned sun," she cursed irritably, "And those stupid fish," she added as she passed the docks where a particularly poignant catch was being hauled up. "This whole town reeks, even those disgusting old people," she rolled her eyes as one elderly gentleman smiled a toothless grin at her as she passed his tiny hut and headed for the docks at the other end of the beach. The only good thing about this errand was that she might be afforded some juicy gossip or a glance at what men had returned from their journeys as Hunters. Though they had returned later than usual; she was usually in the arms of a fair skinned warrior by the time a cool breeze blew through. No matter, the next three moons should be very prosperous for her.

Radey

Lenaya had asked for Halyn and Daya to accompany Darina to the fish market so Daya could get reacquainted with Lorrim and Halyn could pick out the freshest fish; Darina had never had an eye for that sort of thing. As the three walked Halyn watched pleasantly as Darina pointed out the homes of different people and Daya began to recognize some of them. "That's where Feyin Rawnwind lives," Darina said motioning towards a wooden home built just like her own home, "He's quite a looker if you ask me," she added with a wink to Daya.

"How you've grown over the year," Halyn told her, "I remember when you were trying to give Feyin a bad basket of oranges after he dropped a crab in your lap."

"Forgiveness if a virtue passed down by the Goddess," Darina replied simply, "If She wanted me to still hate him she wouldn't have given him such dazzling blue eyes. Oh look, there's the fish market. Mother wants mahi-mahi, yellowtail and a bag of shrimp, Halyn. Daya and I are going to find the fruit stand." At that she took Daya's hand; the girl barely had time to wave to Halyn before she was pulled in the opposite direction of the dock where the fish were displayed, and into a crowd of people.

Halyn smiled to himself, glad that Darina had taken so well to Daya and hoping that Daya would find some comfort in her. For being in such a strange situation she was handling herself very well. Though, that fact in itself worried him. He decided to talk with her that night about how she was feeling and what her plans were. He couldn't really expect her to continue sleeping in his small room, especially if it turned out that her family still lived in Lorrim. And the thought that he would be leaving her in just three moons to continue with his troupe of Hunters again made a small place in his stomach twist uncomfortably. He was trying to remind himself that the Goddess was in control of all and if she was meant for him then they would be together when he heard a familiar voice behind him.

"Halyn!" Lily burst out when she saw the familiar light brown hair bent over a display of mahi-mahi.

Halyn turned around and his heart dropped at the sight of Lily. "Oh Lily," he said as brightly as he could manage, "How are you?"

"I'm wonderful now," she said with a flirtatious bat of her long, dark lashes, "I lost track of time, I didn't realize you would be returning so early."

"Or late," Halyn corrected, "It's already into early winter." He chose three fish and paid for them walking away with the wide-eyed girl in tow.

"In any case," she said, "It's wonderful for you to be home. Did anyone else come with you?"

"Yes, actually," he said with a smile, "Someone did."

"Oh who?" Lily asked her blue eyes blazing with thought.

"Daya Sersi," he replied and left her standing in shock.

"Daya? What kind of a name is that?" she snorted after she caught up at him at the shrimp display.

"A very beautiful one if you ask me," Halyn replied. "I'll take this bag," he said and handed three silver coins to the fisherman before heading to the yellowtail display.

"Beautiful?" Lily asked, "I doubt he'd be happy to hear you say that about him."

"Well maybe if she were a he, then that would be so. Ah Daya, Rina!" Halyn called out spotting Daya's dark locks in the sea of fair-haired people.

The pair spotted Halyn and hurried over to him. Darina threw a poisonous smile at Lily and took the bags of fish from her cousin. Daya could feel the dislike between the two girls wash over her like a wave and looked at the girl the poison was directed at. She was pretty, that was obvious, blonde hair, blue eyes, tan skin smooth and supple, a figure to be envied. Daya felt the jealousy flare up in here again and the courtesy smile the girl flashed her was met with a blank face. "Cousin, mother said we should hurry home. We've got all the fruits and vegetable she asked for, are you done yet? I don't want to spend too much more time out here, it smells so," Darina remarked with an obvious emphasis on the last phrase.

"I agree," Halyn said and motioned to five yellowtail to be wrapped up.

"Well if you're going to be free later maybe we could go for a walk," Lily said. The question was said to all but directed at Halyn who Lily was slowly moving closer to.

"I don't think so," Daya said, surprising even herself, "We have important things to do." She moved to Halyn's side and slipped her fingers between his.

"I agree," Halyn said smiling at Daya's face with understanding and entirely ignoring the fury on Lily's.

"Well maybe another time then," the blonde said recovering herself, "I hope I see you at the Solstice Celebration then, Halyn," she winked then walked off into the crowd.

"Let's go, I want to wash the smell of that…thing…off me," Darina said and led the way home. "She's a whore you know," she remarked as they walked slowly back to the Radey home.

"Rina," Halyn frowned, "That's not a nice thing to say…even if it's true," he winked at her.

"What did you think of her, Daya?" Rina asked noticing the look on her face.

Shaken from deep thoughts Daya looked up and shrugged, "She's pretty," she stated simply and opened the door when they arrived back at the house.

"Ah good, you're back," Lenaya said and took the bag of shrimp from her daughter, "Oh these do look good. Very good Halyn, and the fruit is fresh too, wonderful Rina."

"Daya picked out the peaches and some crushed hibiscus petals, she said they a good dressing in a salad," Rina told her mother while she unpacked the other fish and hung herbs in the kitchen.

"Do they now?" Lenaya said and smiled at Daya, "Well you'll have to show me how to make it."

"I'd be honored to," Daya replied quietly and opened the bag of crushed petals and poured them into a bowel. "Do you have some fish oil?"

"Right here," Lenaya said and handed her a bottle of thick liquid. Darina started peeling the shells off the shrimp and Lenaya began to flay a yellowtail. "Halyn, go put the mahi-mahi in the ice chest please, dear. And get out the silverware and plates, Nyan and Violet are coming for dinner again tonight but I have a feeling Kae will be with Malia."

"Poor Kae," Darina muttered as she tossed a handful of shells into a bucket, "We saw Lily at the market today. I swear, as soon as the men get back from their journeys she's like a shark on a fresh scent of blood."

Lenaya smiled and noticed Daya's tightened grip around the pestle she had been using to grind the petals and oil into a heavy paste. "Well, she's been that way since her mother died and I don't think she's going to change. But no self-respecting Hunter would ever fall into her spell; I don't see what she's wasting her time for."

"She used a little of that magic on Halyn tonight," Rina whispered to her mother, "I don't think Daya liked it," she winked.

"Do you have some basil?" Daya asked and returned to mashing when it was handed to her.

The three women set out a supper of fresh salad with Daya's dressing, shrimp and yellowtail, as well as cornmeal rolls and slices of potatoes. The family sat down to dinner with Kae absent as predicted and ate with compliments to Daya's dressing and Lenaya's lemon sauce with the fish. There was speculation about how long it would take Kae to find the courage to finally ask Malia's hand. He was perfectly capable of taking care of her, as well as her vile sister, it was only a matter of time until they were wed. Halyn and Nyan cleaned the table and the rest of the family sat in the living room on the couches. Daya sat near the fireplace at one end of a couch with little Mia on her lap. She let the little girl trace the markings on her arms and play with her long dark hair. Violet, glad to have the rambunctious little one in someone else's arms, put her head on her husband's shoulder and listened as Hector described the fish tale told to him by another fisherman. After putting away all the dishes Halyn sat down next to Daya and listened as his uncle talked. Apparently a shark as big as the man himself had dragged his boat out almost a measure into the open ocean.

"I was out there all day," Hector said, "And that man's boat never went any farther than mine. Shark, ha, I'll believe it when I see it."

"Well there have been shark sightings down by the deep piers," Nyan reminded his father.

"True, but that was a while ago. Besides, the water here is much shallower and warmer, I doubt sharks would find much reason to come here."

"Maybe the food supply in the deeper water is getting smaller," Halyn noted, "They could be coming closer in shore to prey on our fish."

"I hope that's not the case," Violet said in a smooth, honey voice, "Lorrim has always had a good economy but it relies mostly on the fish population. What would we do if the sharks started eating all the fish?"

Nyan rubbed his wife's arm, "Don't worry dearest, we'd find a way. Besides this is just an old fisherman's tale, I doubt the sharks are coming in this far."

Hector nodded reassuringly to his daughter-by-marriage, "Yes Violet, you've nothing to worry about. Young Nyan here will be fishing these prosperous waters until he twice my age."

"I don't know if that's a relief or a not," Violet laughed.

"If it keeps food on the table for little Mia, it's a relief. Speaking of, she's taken a liking to you Daya," Nyan remarked.

The little girl was sleeping on Daya's lap with her head on her shoulder. Daya ran fingers down her long black hair and smiled, "She's adorable Violet."

"Well adorable she may be, she's still quite a handful," Mia's mother replied, "But it's good that she likes you, she hasn't been very good at getting along with other people, and it's hard to leave her with anyone when Nyan and I travel to Twalik for the Pira."

"What's the Pira?" Daya asked and moved Mia's head to her other shoulder for comfort.

"It's a fair at the capital that comes around each year just after winter, before all the Hunters leave again. It's mostly to plan action against Lodin now but it used to be a cheerier time with shopping and entertainment being more important than the treaties and agreements worked out between provinces. Though there's still an air of that old affability still; the best way to weaken Lodin's morale is to show him we're still ourselves," Halyn explained for her, "It used to be held at a different place each year but since Seranne is the only free province Twalik has been the center of the Pira for the past nine years."

"Yes, but now commanders and the Lord Hosvil make plans for Lodin's demise," Nyan added stretching, "Then again they're always doing that so I guess the Pira is just to keep the province united." He yawned and looked to his wife, "Well my dear it's getting late, we had better start back home."

"I agree husband," Violet said and reached for her daughter, "We'll come back tomorrow, I know Mia will want to see you again," she told Daya before saying goodnight and leaving with her husband.

"They have the right idea," Lenaya said and took her husband's hands, "Put out the fire before you go to bed," she told Halyn and her daughter before retiring with Hector to their bedroom. Darina followed them after bidding her cousin and Daya goodnight.

Finally the two sat alone with the fire blazing lazily in the hearth. Halyn snuck an arm around Daya's shoulders and pulled her in close as they both watched the flames lick up the stone they were trapped in. "The dressing you made was wonderful," he commented with his face resting in her soft, dark red hair.

"Thank you," she replied and pulled his other hand around across her stomach.

"I thought tomorrow we might travel to the other side of town and see if we can find your family," Halyn began, "If you're feeling well enough."

Daya turned to look at him. The Astani features in him were obvious and she didn't understand how she hadn't realized it before. The fair skin, slim build, light eyes and hair, the bone structure in his face that was elegant yet strong. They were such a beautiful race compared to the Humans, like Daya, with their dark features, shorter and stockier physique, and pronounced features; so very different from the beauty of the Astani though still beautiful in their own way. "I'm feeling much better," Daya replied and planted a kiss on his cheek, "Thanks to you, and yes, I would love to go tomorrow, I'm almost sick with excitement. Or maybe that's just that I'm tired," she said and yawned. "I think I'm going to go to bed. Are you going to stay up longer?"

Halyn nodded smiling into her bright blue eyes, "Yes, I think I'll wait until Kae gets home and then put out the fire. If you hear the door open it's just me. Goodnight," he said and gave her a short kiss before she walked back down the hall and when he heard the back door shut he knew she was out.

Halyn settled into the soft couch and watched the fire blaze up and down sporadically in its red fury. He felt the heat of it on his face and it reminded him of the fire he felt each time he touched Daya. He closed his eyes and pictured her face, the curves of her body, her slender waist, the way she felt in his arms…

"Thinking about Daya?" Kaedin said disrupting Halyn's thoughts as he closed the door behind him.

Halyn hadn't even felt the stirring of his body but now he knew how Kaedin knew his thoughts and turned a bright shade of red. "Yes," he replied in a voice slightly higher than his regular tone.

"I can tell," his cousin said and sat down next to him to take off his boots.

"Dinner at Malia's?" Halyn asked.

"Yes sir," Kae replied, "And I'm sure you can guess what the dinner conversation was about, or who."

Halyn frowned, "No, who?"

"You," Kae answered and sat back in one of the chairs opposite Halyn.

"Me?"

"Yes, you. Apparently Lily saw you in the market. She seemed a little offended that you didn't accompany her on a beach stroll after dinner."

Halyn rolled his eyes, "Well send her my apologies," he remarked, "But I'd rather seen my own blood spilled than accompany her in anything."

"As would all men."

"Not all," Halyn corrected, "Most fall to her like wheat to a scythe and you know it. I, however, never will."

"No, not with that pretty little thing you brought home, eh?" Kae winked and received another blush from Halyn.

"No, definitely not," he mused and this time caught the rush of blood to his stomach before it got any further.

"Have you any plans in that respect?"

Halyn shrugged, "We'll see, I only brought her with me to see if her family still lived here, though something tells me they've gone to Helvalis. There's really no more Humans left in Seranne, and very few any where else on Aldola. I think someone would have recognized her, especially if she has a twin."

"A twin," Kae raised his eyebrows, "That's unique. There are not too many twins born anymore."

"I know," Halyn agreed, "But I didn't have the heart to crush her hopes right now. I mean, they may still live here I can't know for sure until tomorrow. But either way I think someone will know what happened to them."

"Probably on the ships that went to Helvalis though," Kaedin nodded, "I'd bet you a whole year's catch on that one."

"Well if I thought I'd win I'd take that bet," Halyn smiled then yawned. "Well, I'll let you put out that fire and see you in the morning Kae." Kaedin nodded and the two men went to bed.

He woke up with a splitting headache. He felt all the stolen power he'd been using being dragged out of him like poison sucked out of a wound. Something was happening he hadn't thought of, the Book was taking back what had been pillaged from it. He could only hope that once the others came into their own they wouldn't be as ruthless as this Book was being. He struggled out of bed and took a deep drink from the goblet of wine on his table before he donned a night robe and threw open the doors to his new study. He pulled out his own book, one not nearly as powerful as the Book that pulled his power from him. He muttered a quick spell from this book of dark arts and the sucking of his power stopped suddenly. He breathed a quick sigh of relief and then his fury hit as he knew it would. How dare his power be sucked! It was his by whatever manner and no gift of the Elements was going to take it from him. He gathered his web of magic and went to the window where the cold Rawnheist winter blew frigid air into his face. Like a fisherman's net he held his magic and threw it out as far as he could until it reached the far corners of Salla and Seranne. He had never attempted to use his powers like this to scry as a crystal could not. It was dangerous and he knew that at any moment he could be caught and his web unraveled and his mind with it. He had never attempted such a thing before and even in his rage had the good sense to think about pulling back his web. However, good sense is often pushed down by anger as it was in this case and he left his web out there, searching desperately for a source of magic strong enough to do what it had done. And he found it.

Seranne, as far as one could get from Rawnheist. He cursed, there was no way the Silent Service could help him now. Of all the places for the Book to be it had to be in the one place he couldn't get to. Yet. His Master was bored with taking care of his current prizes and was anxious to take another. To have the entire continent at his will. But those Hunters had been making things hard lately. Winning more battles, getting closer and closer to Rawnheist and Castle Middin, all these things put even more stress on the mage. He focused his power and drew in his web, trying to find the exact location of the Book. He felt the pulsing of magic from the very edge of Seranne, in Lorrim. The north side of the L-shaped town, close to the sea, in a cluster of wooden homes bleached by the sun, in a small shed. He found it. On a table next to a sleeping figure. He could almost caress it, the beautiful dark leather, the golden lock, the intricate writing. The figure turned over and he idly looked. A girl, her face was tan and soft, she was pretty with dark hair falling across her face. He stared at her for a moment, wondering how she came into possession of such an object, how it even got back to Aldola, when she opened her eyes. He saw them, blue eyes like a sky on a pale winter day. They sparkled with more than just youth, with power, knowledge, and more than she knew. But he knew it. And because he knew it he gathered his web back to him and shut the windows as fast as he could. The worst possible situation. The Book was in Seranne. And in the possession of a Chosen.

Daya sat bolt upright in the bed, panting as if she'd run a foot race from Rawnheist to Lorrim. Halyn rolled off the couch in surprise and stood up with his hair fell in his face. "What, what's wrong?" he said.

With one look at Halyn Daya burst out laughing, forgetting the unnerving sensation she had had a moment before. "Oh Halyn," she said.

"What?" he asked unable to keep himself from smiling. "Ah Daya," he laughed and went over to where she was on the bed.

Daya moved over so he could get under the covers with her and she snuggled up to him. She sighed, "Ah Halyn."

He played with her hair and put his arms around her, "So what woke you up?" he asked.

"I think it was just a bad dream, I felt like someone was staring at me, just an inch from my face," she answered and held her hand out in front of her nose.

Halyn frowned, "Well it was just a dream though,"

"Yes it was," she reassured him. Daya pulled herself up to his face and kissed his cheek.

He turned on his side to face her and ran his hand over her cheek and held her face up to his and kissed her, then again, and then again. She put an arm under his shoulder and pressed her body close to his. She was so warm, so soft, so beautiful, he couldn't control his body like he had before. He sat up more and wrapped both arms around her, running them up and down her back as he kissed her continually then moved to her neck and back to her lips. She put her other arm around his neck and kissed him even tighter, breathing faster. He ran his hand all across her back and then brought them around to her front and let his hand slide slowly over one round breast. She caught her breath and stopped kissing him to pull her face back. "I'm sorry," he said quickly, "I'm so sorry. I shouldn't have."

"No," she whispered softly and looked at him with longing, "It's ok, I just didn't expect it."

Halyn smiled softly, "So it's ok?"

"Yes," she said, "Halyn, I've only known you a little bit, but, I want you to know, I'm yours. Whether you feel the same or not."

"Oh Daya," he murmured, "I feel the same, I promise."

She smiled, "I thought you did," she said and kissed him softly again. She took his hand in her own and brought it back up to her breast. He began to massage her, then using both hands as she kissed his lips. Her body was so warm, he untied the strings that kept the top of the nightshirt together and slipped it down a little. He felt her tremble slightly as he touched her bare breast; so soft and round. Her body responded to his touch and he could see the dark pink of her nipple flush even deeper and he could barely contain himself. He rubbed her body a bit more then pulled her close and held her long. He planted a kiss on her lips and re-tied her shirt.

"Sleep, now," he whispered and pulled the blankets back up over her and himself.

He woke up slumped in his chair with thoughts from the last night still running through his head. He had to tell his master that he had found the Book and a Chosen. Seranne would have to be taken. And fast.

Daya yawned early in the morning and turned over. Halyn's arms were still wrapped around her even while he slept. "Wake up sleepy," she whispered in his ear.

Halyn wrinkled his nose and opened his eyes slowly. "Good morning," he said and hugged her close thinking he could get used to waking up that way. "Did you sleep well?"

"Very," she replied, "I felt safe," she nestled herself into his chest.

"You're always safe with me, Daya," Halyn assured her.

"Yes, I can feel it," Daya murmured.

Halyn pushed the covers off their bodies and got out of bed. As much as he would have liked to stay there with her forever he knew that if Lenaya walked in things may be complicated to explain. Besides, he was excited today; it was time to see if Daya's family still lived in Lorrim.

Daya dresses fast in a blue dress that matched her eerie eyes and tied her hair up with a scarf that stood up on her head. "I can't believe all this," she said to Halyn as they walked into the main house, "It's almost too much to stand in such a short time."

Halyn frowned, he had been wondering why the things that had happened to her weren't affecting her drastically. "Daya, if there's ever anything you want to talk about you can come to me. This is definitely too much to stand in such a short time. Don't keep anything hidden from me."

"I won't Halyn," she smiled and slipped her hand in his. His heart fluttered every time she said his name. They pair ate with the rest of the Radey clan and Lenaya gave Daya a bag of food for their lunch. It was quite a hike to the other side of the city and they probably wouldn't be back until the evening. Halyn took Daya down to the beach so they could walk and avoid some of the crowd in the main town.

"Do you remember the last time you came down here?" Halyn asked.

Daya twirled in the sand, "I remember being at the beach. I can't tell if it was here or anywhere else but it was certainly beautiful," she laughed, "I remember running with Dama through flocks of birds on the beach."

"Dama?" Halyn asked.

"My sister. Daya and Dama," she replied thoughtfully, "I wonder what she's like now. I can't wait to find out," she smiled broadly.

Halyn stopped, "Daya," he began, "You know there's a pretty fair chance that your family isn't here any more. Most of the humans in Seranne left years ago. There's very few of your people left here at all."

Daya walked back to him, "I know there's that chance, and I've prepared. I've lived without them for nineteen years; I think I can make it a little longer. It'll be enough to just know where they are."

Halyn forced a smile, "Alright, if you're sure."

They walked all day along the beach. It was especially interesting to Halyn to be able to watch how the ocean changed in color and emotion in the different lights. At noon they stopped and ate a little picnic by the water with Daya's bird squawking at any of the gulls that tried to steal some food.

"He sure is protective of you," Halyn commented.

"I know, and it's very odd, birds rarely take to a person like this. I guess he knows I helped save him," Daya replied and set out a few crumbs for the bird.

"I hope he's not waiting around to be able to do the same for you," Halyn snickered.

"I think he needs a name, don't you?" Daya mused, "I think I read a book somewhere about a girl who had the spirit of a warrior protecting her. I think his name was Tarak. That sounds good I'd say, hmm Tarak?" she asked the bird. Tarak chirped and looked at her with one dark eye.

"I think that's a yes," Halyn said and moved to pull Daya closer to him. Tarak squawked and ruffled his wings at Halyn.

Daya burst out in laughter, "I guess you're not supposed to touch me when he's around," she said.

Halyn frowned, "That's not for a bird to decide," he brooded.

Daya tilted her head, "Oh don't worry, I'll let you touch me anytime you want," she purred and pulled herself onto his lap.

"I'm going to hold you to that," he warned her with a grin.

"I bet you will," she kissed him lightly.

Just an hour after they had eaten Halyn announced they had reached the other side of Lorrim. "Do you remember where you lived?" he asked.

Daya wrinkled her nose like a rabbit. "It was on the edge of a forest, and there was a stream just behind my house, a very small stream."

Halyn nodded, "I think I know where you're talking about. Just a little farther." Daya smiled and followed him through a nest of houses. The area was empty for the most part; all the men were down at the docks and many of the women were at the market. Children ran from house to house and a few young ones stopped to look at the dark skin and hair of Daya because they hadn't seen anyone aside from their fair Astani relatives.

Daya looked around her trying recognize anything she could but it wasn't going well until she saw a tree in between two houses the was gnarled like an old face. "That!" she pointed, "I remember, we called it the Old Man Bark. We ran around it ten times before we hid." Daya ran over to the tree and ran her fingers over the gnarled face. "And then when it was dark we ran this way." Daya ran around houses apparently following some childhood map in her head with Halyn in tow. They were almost to the edge of town where a forest separated Lorrim from the next town over when she stopped in front of a wooden house bleached from the sun and salt. "This is it," she whispered staring at the house, "This is home."

Halyn came up behind her and took her arm, "Don't have your hopes up ok?" he said softly.

Daya, unable to hide the happy glow on her face, smiled up at him. "I'll try," she said.

Halyn nodded and walked up to the door and knocked.