[This post is from Phelan’s point of view.]
Phelan listened silently to the sound of dripping water somewhere beyond his vision to the left. Laying on his back near the edge of the tents, he stared up at the striped blue and white above him, gaze slipping in and out of focus as he forgot the feeling of the damp ground beneath his back and ignored the faint chill to the air.
Things were changing and he wasn’t certain what to make of those changes, or if he should even worry too much about them. But he could feel the shift in his bones, down to the marrow. It was strange, but not necessarily frightening.
Not yet, anyway.
“What are you doing, Phelan?”
Jacqueline stood above him, her nose wrinkled slightly as she gazed down at him in apparent confusion and concern. Phelan smiled a little.
“Five feet from where the rain’s coming in?” The healer smirked slightly. “Somehow, I think I could come up with much better places to lay down and think.”
Phelan attempted an eloquent shrug from flat on his back, one he suspected fell well short of the mark. The look on Jac’s face told him that he was absolutely correct in that regard and he heaved a heavy sigh.
The tiny blonde put one hand on her hip as she watched him roll onto his side and begin to get up, eyes narrowing slightly as she studied him not with a lover’s gaze, but one of a now-experienced healer.
“I’m all right,” he assured her as he got his feet back under him and dusted himself off. Some of the dampness lingered, seeped into his clothing. He’d have to deal with that before too long or else Jacqueline would have something to really worry about.
“Uh-huh,” she said, still eyeing him. “Because you on the ground like that is totally normal.”
Now it was Phelan’s turn to shoot his lover a long, measuring look. Slowly, a wry grin crept across her features.
“Okay, okay. Maybe it’s less unusual than I am making it out to be but I still have every right to be concerned and curious, now don’t I? What’s going on, Phelan? Something’s got to be, right? Beyond the usual?”
He shrugged again and her gaze sharpened into a glare.
“Right,” he said quietly. “Sorry. It’s just—”
“No games,” she said softly. “No secrets. You promised.”
And he had. He’d promised that the only secrets he kept would be the necessary ones, and oddly enough their definitions of necessary seemed to align fairly well—something he’d taken as yet another sign that he’d finally found the person he’d been meant to find after all of the centuries he’d spent alone, paying penance for crimes that he wasn’t sure were all his to atone for, though he had to admit that he did have more than his fair share of things to pay for.
Sighing again, he took both of her hands in his and squeezed them gently. “It’s nothing that I’d call bad,” he murmured. “At least not at this point. Just a little concerning maybe.”
“Concerning,” she echoed, eyes searching his face for something he wasn’t sure she’d find—reassurance, perhaps. “Concerning how?”
“All the prophecies,” he said softly. “All the futures—everything that I’ve been taught, everything that’s been seen by people like Thom and Marin and my cousin and all the other Seers down through the ages. Something’s changing, Jac. I don’t know what it is but I can feel it.
“There’s been a shift and I don’t know what it means.”