Forty-one – 01

[This post is from Hecate’s point of view.]

She could taste his fear, even at this distance.  They could hear the screams, though distant and faint.  Hecate’s jaw tightened as she stared off toward the wall, though she couldn’t see it from where they still sat by the fire.

“What do you think it is?” Thom asked, his voice a hushed whisper.  There was no reason for it—there was no enemy here to overhear them—but he did it anyway and somehow it felt right that he did.  That more than anything left her slightly frightened, a little shaken.  “Well.  Who.”

“I know who it is,” she whispered, cradling her nephew against her chest.  Lin had one tiny fist wrapped around one of his father’s fingers, the other fist somehow tangled in the fabric of her shirt.  “I don’t have to guess.”

He stared at her for a few seconds, lips thinning as he huddled in the blanket she’d thrown around his shoulders.  “Who is it, then?”

“Olympium,” she breathed.  “It’s them.”  They’re coming for me—but maybe more than just me.  Maybe.  She hoped against hope that it was for more than just her, though she’d rather they not come at all.

Thom winced, a shudder running through him.  “Are they going to need you out on the wall?”

Hecate closed her eyes against stinging tears, jaw tightening slightly.  “No,” she said.  “No, this is where Matt wants me and this is where I’m going to stay.”  He’s worried enough as it is—and has enough to worry about on his own.  She felt sick to her very core, terrified.  They would make a target of him as much as they’d made one of her.

“You’re scared.”

“Of course,” she said.  “I’m not a fool, Thom.”

At least, not about this.  Not about this—not this time.  I know what they’re capable of.

But I’m also starting to know what we’re capable of, and I have to believe there’s a chance.  I have to.

There’s no other choice.

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