So this is a super super short chapter, but next one will be longer. I just wanted to get this up while I'm finishing the next chappy. WELL Sorry for the wait,as always, hope you ENJOY ;) and REVIEWING makes me super happy ^^

"I want to meet her." The girl bouncing on her heels whined. Tahllas and Kimi approached the group slowly, concern evident in Tahllas' gaze. When they finally reached the group, Kimi took a step back in surprise at the hand shoved in her direction and the smile in the red headed girl's eyes. "Hello, Kimi, I've been dying to meet you. For over a decade now. Tahl was always a grouchy pants and never would let you play with us as well. He's not very good at sharing." Kimi hesitantly shook her outstretched hand and the other girl's eyes widened. "Oh wait, introductions. Sorry, I'm Aria, cousin to Tahl, sister of Neiha and niece of Jorik." Aria smiled, pointing to the girl holding the boys hand then to the man with copper hair standing towards the side.

"Let everyone introduce themselves first Aria." Tahllas said, pushing Aria back while the woman who looked like Tahllas stepped forward.

"It's been a long time since you've touched foot on your homeland, Kimi Karlsdottir. I'm pleased to see your return. I am called Haeljra and am the mother of Thallas." The woman embraced Kimi, startling her. She did not seem to mind Kimi's rigid frame and soon let go to grasp Kimi's head. "That Shaman did nothing that I can't fix." She stared intently into Kimi's eyes, causing Kimi to immediately drop her gaze. "Much has happened in the time you've been gone from us." She said, a small frown forming on her face.

Uncomfortable, Kimi shifted on her feet, wanting to retreat back to her cabin. The memory of Jack still resounded in her mind and she could feel her unease growing. "Come on brats." One of the men to the side barked, startling Kimi. He gave a short nod to her ridged frame and the concern Thallas held in his eyes. "You can all meet her later; let them finish up what they must."

"But Uncle." Aria whined. He silenced her with a sharp look. Aria turned to look at Kimi before dropping her head and walking towards the two men. Seeing her sister follow the man, Neiha pulled the boy and followed after.

"You can't take them." Kimi stood up, her body in agony. She was barely holding her balance on her one good leg, but she refused to back down. Jack tugged weakly at her ripped pants, but she paid no heed. The two men turned to look at Kimi. She was acting, not thinking. It was hard to tell when to act and think over the past couple of days. One way would get you killed, the other save you for another day. The problem came in guessing which way you needed to follow. When they shouted something in a harsh tune, she knew she guessed wrong. The focus was away from the two girls though, and even though she didn't know if she would make it out alive now, at least she bought more time for two innocents.

Kimi blinked and noticed all in the clearing had stopped moving. All gazes probed into her and she blinked again. It was lucky she had made it alive for so long. Here, genders mattered and the fact that she was playing army girl was something she thought would immediately kill her when captured. They had done less for women simply wanting to be schooled. Searing pain flashed through her body but she was too far gone to scream. It was okay though, if the focus was on her, then she knew the girls and Jack would be okay for now. Dully her eyes rolled forward to the swinging blur of light above her head. Why was death something she dealt with on a daily basis but so far from her when she wanted it. Kimi closed her eyes.

Startled she fell backwards as her mouth parted in silent surprise. There was only Thallas and his mother now, both staring intently at Kimi. She could see rage in their eyes, but she could also see, feel, the sympathy bounding off the two in waves. Her head was pounding and she just wanted to go back and sleep. These past few blissful nights of sleep seemed like heaven as she tried to stop herself from blinking. She didn't want to relive what she left. Her whole body tensed and Thallas eased himself to the ground.

"It's unforgivable." She heard Haeljra whisper. Thallas slowly leaned towards her shaking body, hand slightly stretched out. Kimi kept her eyes focused on his stretched out hand, not wanting to see the anger or sympathy or any type of emotion. His hand slowly came to rest on her cheek, pulsing with warmth, crowding her senses with peace. A wave of lethargy swept over her body and she leaned into the touch. Her eyes could no longer stay open but she welcomed the blissful nothingness that she found herself falling into.