[This post is from Cameron’s point of view.]
“Are you about to tell me that the forges of Avalon were magic?” Cameron guessed, watching as Neve’s smile began to bloom more fully. Something tugged at the back of his brain—something about Avalon itself, something he thought he knew but couldn’t quite remember, though not from lack of trying.
“Not just the forges, Cam,” she whispered, still smiling. “Avalon was magic—is, I suppose. Maybe it survived.”
“You think it’s possible?”
She shrugged slightly, staring at nothing for a moment as she rested her head against his chest. “Maybe. I haven’t been there for centuries, not since my father ordered us all to leave. It’s a long time for a place to survive without really being tended. I don’t know. Phelan might. Hell, he might have been there since then.”
“What was it like?” Cameron asked, trying to picture a place he’d only heard stories about, never actually seen. “I mean, there are a thousand stories about it but I have no idea which ones are true—what’s real.”
“Mm.” Neve sighed softly, glancing down toward Anne for a second. Their daughter was asleep, tiny mouth open in an ‘o.’ She smiled, differently this time, one of love and pride and oddly enough, relief. “Where to start. Well, it was tucked into the hills by a lake fed by a river with a waterfall. We were so high up, the mists would hide the way up to the village but we could see for miles even though no one who didn’t know the way could find us. The people—some of them were like me and then there were others who weren’t, were just normal people, and some that came from pairings of normal people and the Aes Dana, like the pairings that produced Brighíd and Cíar’s mother. It was peaceful there and yet somehow—somehow there was a fire to that place that I can’t adequately describe.”
“How long were you there?” Cameron asked softly.
“On and off for a long time,” she said softly, closing her eyes again. “It was the one place I was allowed to come back to, that Father didn’t stop me from coming to even when he told us we had to forget this world. He let me come back.” She opened her eyes, brow furrowing as she glanced up toward him. “You know, until now, I never wondered why.”
Cameron shrugged slightly, frowning. “Does it matter?”
“I don’t know,” Never said softly. “I really don’t know. Maybe. He was a lot of things but at the same time, he always had a reason for what he did—or didn’t do.”