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Whoosh. The past week had been an absolute blur. I guess that’s just how it goes when you lose your… Rowan couldn’t even get the words out internally yet, let alone speak them. He’d known Jace since they were kids! A chance meeting with the prince on the shore of their pond at 11 had quickly blossomed into a long-standing friendship, a duo yet to meet its match when it came to working in sync on mischief, albeit with Rowan’s hesitations. From there, their steadfast teamwork in fighting for their home in the Wishing War 5 years ago. A number of near-death experiences, had taught them they couldn’t imagine a life without the other, and they began dating around the same time they started up university at Coras Academy, across the continent. It was a match made in heaven. Taking it slowly, they got engaged two years later, then married, and everything was coming up roses. They had a lovely honeymoon visiting the Shimmerspire Caves, the Wayward Waterfall, and the Wishing Meadow. Life was perfect. Perfect, that is, until they completed their return trip home, and Jace began to fall ill. First it was just a small cough, the occasional shiver. But as time went on, his condition worsened. He would develop fevers, be confined to bedrest on occasion, have trouble keeping his food down. His weight began to dwindle. It was horrifying for Rowan to watch his love’s health atrophy, and all his attempts to turn things around proved fruitless. On the eve of their second anniversary, Rowan was informed by the royal healers that it would likely be Jace’s final night. Rowan’s desperation crescendoed, as he planned to pull out the last stop. A true love’s kiss is supposed to solve all our problems, right? Well, that night, as he lay beside Jace, desperately wondering why fate had dealt them this card, Rowan turned to Jace, and the two locked eyes in silence, before leaning in. “I overheard the healers, I get that this is it for me.” Rowan’s eyes widened. “No, no, it’s alright, I understand you not wanting to tell me, hoping we could share one last, peaceful moment…” Jace reached across the mere inches separating the two, grasping for Rowan’s hand. “Will you… let me have one last…” The words trailed off, as Rowan was already leaning in. He assumed at this point Jace had already figured out this was on his mind. The two shared an intimate moment, Rowan’s hand on the side of Jace’s face, lips locked, before Rowan moved back, eyes darting back and forth, attempting to figure out if it worked. Jace’s eyes lit up, and Rowan’s mood lifted temporarily, thinking it had worked! Finally, these last two years of panic and desperate attempts to understand this illness, they weren’t all for naught! Rowan was elated! That was, he was elated, before Jace turned to the side to cough, dashing all Rowan’s hopes. Rowan wrapped his arms around Jace, pulling him close, and just lying there in silence, feeling his breaths. In, and out. In, and out. In, and out. In, and out... In… Out… Then, silence. Tears escaped Rowan’s eyes, as he shut Jace’s lids, not able to let go. Three days later, the funeral was held, the casket bore through the streets of Esencia, with Rowan following silently behind for the several-mile trip, head bowed. The citizens of Animæ showed up in full force, all desiring to pay their respects to the crown prince, he who had fought so valiantly to save them from the world-threatening foe just five years prior. At 23, it was far too young to lose a member of the royal family, and even more unheard of for his soulmate to be left behind. As they processed into the sepulchre, Rowan stepped to the back, allowing himself to be the last to see Jace’s body put to rest. Gazing one last time upon the face of his beloved, Rowan choked, tears streaming down his face again. What did I do to deserve this? Why did this have to happen? he thought in desperation, not expecting an answer, and none given. Rowan’s parents waited patiently outside the place of rest, horrified themselves at the situation. Rowan came outside, and immediately fell into their arms, body wracked with sobs. After a few minutes, he pulled back, wiped his sleeves, and simply said, “I have to go.” He turned around, and headed swiftly back to their quarters in the castle. Hoping to avoid having to run into Jace’s parents, because that was simply something he couldn’t fathom at the moment, Rowan packed up essentials, and changed out of his funeral clothes, into his typical travel clothes. Grabbing his bow and quiver, bag in hand, he nearly headed out the door before he spied Jace’s blue cloak hanging on the back of the door. Rowan put down the bag and quiver, and wrapped the cloak around himself, fastening the shoulder pads on over top. With that, Rowan took the back way out of the castle, to the stables, where Teyron, his wolf steed and companion, was waiting, ready for the trip. Rowan fled the castle under cover of twilight. He wasn’t concerned, knowing full well Teyron knew the way to the Triple R. After the last week, hell, the last two years, Rowan just needed some time in solitude. Plus, it had been a bit since he’d visited his pups. Rowan dislodged a half hour later, amidst excited barks, licks, and pounces from his many rescues. He stood his ground, that is, until Wolt came bounding up and jumped, knocking Rowan to the ground in a mess of licks, playful bites, and static electricity. Rowan laughed, for the first time in days, scratching lovingly and vigorously at the pup’s scruff. Yes, this is exactly what I need right now, he thought to himself. Four days passed in this way, Rowan embracing solitude and caring for Rowan’s Ruff Ranch, a name Jace had applied to the canid sanctuary years before, that had stuck, though Rowan made him promise to refer to it as the Triple R to spare him a majority of the embarrassment. This day began like the rest, going through his hygiene routine, making an egg breakfast, putting out food for all the pups, getting knocked over lovingly by one of the more vivacious pups. However, this time as Cor bounded up to make a run for him, Rowan spied an oddity to the side. He saw a large castle-like structure through what appeared to be a window, except the window was flickering in and out. The castle was the spitting image of Coras Academy, his alma mater. He didn’t have enough time to react to this information before he was knocked over. On the way down, he noticed it grow lighter around him, his body seeming to become enveloped in light. He grew confused as his head didn’t hit the ground as expected. Rather, he seemed to keep falling and falling. Rowan looked straight ahead, unable to turn his head, frightened into stillness, ready to accept his fate. Death, surely. It would only be fair. But fate seemed to have other plans, as the falling stopped. Well, it wasn’t quite that simple. There was a feeling first, as Rowan’s body seemed to hit something that buckled underneath him, allowing him to continue another 5 or 6 feet to what he assumed was the ground. This something seemed to have cushioned his fall, which he was thankful for, particularly as he watched his bow and quiver fall to his side, not blessed with the same cushion, but thankfully built with resilience in mind. Rowan turned around to get a look at the thing that cushioned his… Wait… that’s not a thing… That’s a… Rowan’s eyes grew wide in recognition, as the man who had cushioned his fall met his eyes, his blonde ponytail splayed around his head like the sun's rays. “Kl… Klein, is that you?” Rowan asked, incredulous, jaw dropping.
Shay, I thought you might really appreciate the blue flower collection I've been working on, considering how many blue flowers I've given you for your kith over the last month. Cheers!
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MY SKIN IS CLEAR, MY CROPS ARE THRIVING, MY GRADES ARE UP Thank you so much for this blessing, Rue, and for this fantastic surprise Mira! I thought you might have had a trick up your sleeve bc you were being pretty secretive about the commission, and this was a fantastic surprise to come across!!!
Re: horribly distort somebody's name
by Icepath » March 10, 2017 11:59 AM
@Andy Hand me