AN: This is the 7th and final chapter of Part 1. Bear with me while I work on the second installment, it doesn't exactly follow the Eldest story line completely. Thank you for reading and reviewing!

Ancient Language Translation: Svit-kona eka celobra ono un malabra un se onr sverdar sitja hvass. Wise woman I honor you and may your sword stay sharp.

Cinna was the first to wake the following morning, her internal clock woke her an hour before dawn. Raja was already awake and standing by the door. Let's go for a dawn flight, there is someone I want to meet. Now interested Cinna pulled on a pair of second hand breeches and a homespun shirt from a pile near the door. Raja clacked his beak impatiently as she kissed Murtagh's cheek and laced her boots. When she was finished she followed him outside, the sun had not yet risen above the mountain so Cinna's night vision activated, her eyes merely pinpricks in the darkness.

She climbed onto Raja's broad back, immediately he rose into the inky sky, screaming his lamentations to the heavens. The strength of his cry awakened a few citizens and they rushed outside in alarm. Upon seeing, it was them they returned to their dwellings, all save one. Raja began a steep dive; Cinna gripped his body with her legs and spread her arms to the side, as if hoping she too could take flight. Raja's talons clicked on the stone as he landed gracefully. Angela the herbalist stood outside her chambers, she smiled when Cinna's eyes met hers. "Greetings Rider but Not of Dragons, I have long awaited your arrival." Cinna slid off Raja's back and onto the ground and patted his side, "Hello witch, what a relief it is to meet someone closer to my own kind than I have met yet."

As the women clasped hands Solembum came to stand beside Angela, Welcome Rider, everything you seek is near at hand, but will you be ready for it? Cinna crouched and held her hand out for Solembum to sniff, which he did. With a sneeze he backed away into the darkness, projecting his thoughts, Good and evil, perfect control and controlled perfectly balanced. Angela smiled, "Both of you come in, I have things I wish to discuss with you." Cinna followed, "I'm Angela by the way", the herbalist stated, "I already know who you are." When they sat, Angela poured them each a cup of tea, "War is brewing Cinna, you saw a battle here not to take place not too far into the future here, so have I, and therefore I took the liberty of acquiring armor for you and Raja." Cinna gasped, "H-how? There was never a time of Griffin Riders." Angela smiled, "My dear, Alagaesia isn't the only place in this world."

She disappeared for a moment and returned with an armload of armor. Quickly she separated the pieces and beckoned to Raja. "Unlike dragon armor, this set has wing pieces so you can fly despite archers." Cinna tested the metal between her hands, it was springy and flexible. As they slid the wing sections on Raja flexed a wing experimentally, they allowed full extension and retraction. Body plates were fitted close to the slender body, his belly, tail, and legs were likewise protected. On his noble head went a helm that left the lower half of his beak free to bite, but rejoined to protect his neck. Cinna's blue eyes filled with tears, she wiped them away with an impatient hand, but not before Angela saw. She cupped Cinna's face in her hands, "Oh my child, not enough of the world has shown you kindness, has it?" Cinna shook her head, long locks of hair slightly obscuring her face. "Let me tell you of your people."

As Angela spoke Cinna pulled on the armor, it was made of the same material as Raja's. "The Griffin Riders came from a land across the ocean, far to the north, past Vroengard, in a place of eternal winter. "No dragons lived there so the humans, elves, dwarves, and other beings made alliances with these magnificent creatures." Angela paused to buckle the plates of Cinna's armor together. "And yet unlike the Dragon Riders the inability to lie in the vicinity of griffins has enabled their people to flourish without corruption." Cinna now put mail gauntlets over her hands, and a helm on her head. Angela had to sigh at how prepared and battle hardy they looked. When Cinna finished testing the armor Angela helped her to remove it. Now the witch's eyes darkened, "I don't know if I should give you this, I've debated with myself, but you and Raja cannot hope to prevail without it." She disappeared once again to return with a wrapped package. She set it in front of Cinna who hesitated; she could feel the power radiating from it. Cinna's gaze flicked to Angela who nodded.

Slowly Cinna unwrapped a scabbard. With a bit of urging Cinna stood and drew the blade. It was almost as long as she was tall. The hilt was wrought of ornate silver with pearls and sapphires imbedded in it. The tips of the pommel were shaped into deadly beaks. The blade as dished and slightly curved and engraved on both sides was a griffin feather, rich in every detail. It was etched with the exact shade of Raja's banded feathers, russet red and deep cream. It fitted her grip as perfectly as if a mold had been taken from her hand. Cinna belted the scabbard to her waist and swung the sword in a smooth practice swing. The balance was perfect for her style. "Angela, who forged this sword?" The witch smiled, "Your sword's name is Fae'ling, which in the ancient language means "roar of the wind", and your mother forged her for the first Griffin Rider, Cassius Brutus, ages ago." Cinna's heart nearly stopped, "You know my mother is?" Angela nodded, "Even better, we've been friends since childhood." Raja hummed low in his throat, happy that Cinna was happy.

"I don't know how to thank you Angela." Cinna whispered breathlessly. The witch smirked, "Spend the day with me, I wish to study you and how you work with your power." Cinna nodded eagerly, "Will this suffice as the testing that the Twins had in mind?" Angela nodded, "I am stronger than they are and a woman on top of it." Cinna stood, gathering their new armor, "I shall return shortly, after I eat breakfast with Eragon and Murtagh." Angela nodded, "I expect you back here no later than noon." Cinna nodded, "I shall see you then." Then there was a knock a door, Angela answered it, Orik stood in the doorway. "I was sent by Ajihad to tell the Riders that they can eat in the dining hall when they're ready." Cinna smiled warmly, "Thank you Orik and I'm sorry for how I acted when I was brought in." Orik chuckled, "No harm, no foul, Child, I would have done the same thing." Then he turned and left. Cinna climbed onto Raja outside Angela's chambers a few moments later, Angela watched them fly back to the dragon hold with an odd glimmer in her eye. Raja insisted on circling the hold twice before lighting inside.

Eragon and Saphira were already awake. Eragon smiled at them, his hair standing in every direction, but dressed, "Good morning." Cinna nodded and went over to wake Murtagh. Cinna sat beside him and slowly began to brush his hair away from his face. Murtagh's eyes flicked open and slid into focus, he smiled lovingly at Cinna who smiled back. He kissed her briefly, "Good morning," he mumbled, sitting up and rubbing his eyes. Eragon belted on Zar'roc and yawned widely, "What's for breakfast?" Cinna smiled, "We can go down to the dining hall, it has room for all of us." Murtagh stood up and stretched, reaching for breeches and a shirt. Cinna stored the new armor in a closet off the main room. As Murtagh and Eragon laced their boots, Cinna ran a comb through her hair; it was still shiny and healthy-looking from its scrub the day before. She began to braid it but changed her mind and let it hang free down her back.

Now they were ready, Murtagh swung onto Raja behind Cinna and Eragon made one leap onto Saphira's crouched form. Without needing urging from their riders, dragon and griffin rose out of the ceiling and into the dawn. Easily they spiraled down to land a few moments later outside the dining hall. Orik was waiting for them, "Good morning Riders, breakfast is served." Eragon, Cinna, and Murtagh had to gasp; every sort of breakfast dish was spread out over the long table. Also waiting were a dozen assorted hogs, deer, cows, and other livestock for Raja and Saphira. Cinna immediately chose bacon, sausage, ham, and cheese and piled it high on a buttery croissant. Eragon and Murtagh just grabbed meat and cut into it. Bones cracked and blood oozed as Saphira and Raja feasted on their food. For an hour they filled their bellies, harsh trail life had taken its toll. Orik just stared, "I had no idea such small ones like you could eat so much, it could be arranged for you to eat more often." Cinna swallowed thickly, a chunk of French toast slathered in syrup had hung limply from her fork a moment ago. "If it is not an inconvenience." Orik nodded, "Any time you like, feel free."

After eating all they could stomach Cinna led the way to the training yards Angela had described. As promised she was waiting for them, unfortunately so were the Twins. "This is how this is going to work", Angela said with a hard edge to her voice, "I will test Cinna's magical abilities and one of you will test Murtagh, and the other Eragon. I'll be watching for tricks and tests beyond what they could possibly know." Grudgingly the Twins paired off and it began. Murtagh, who possessed no magic, went first. Next was Eragon. The other Twin tested him mercilessly. When he asked Eragon to call the essence of silver Cinna and Arya's voices rang out. As everyone's heads turned to peer at Arya, only Angela noticed Cinna's upper lip curl into a feral snarl. The Twins fled and Arya turned to the Riders, "I wish to see your power Griffin Rider." Cinna smiled a proud, tight smile, shook her hair back and began to perform the task assigned. Cinna was a mediocre magician, able to perform basic tasks but nothing too complicated. Arya lifted her head and stared passed them all, "The council in Ellesmera must be notified, you will be transported there for further questioning, a trial, and a sentence passed." Murtagh's eyes widened, "Cinna's done nothing wrong!" Arya's cold gaze fixed upon his face, "There are no half Elves, no exceptions."

Angela looked furious, Raja hissed warningly, even Saphira began to growl. "Your judgment is clouded Arya, it is not for you to decide Cinna's fate, now I wish to see their abilities with a blade." Angela said, she expected to be obeyed. Utter, undisguised, animalistic hate boiled in Cinna's eyes, it took all of Raja's persuasion to keep her from leaping on Arya. Murtagh was to go first, Cinna sat on a stump and began to calm herself, melding her and Raja's consciousness together, and she already knew both Eragon and Murtagh were sufficient fighters. It was not long until Saphira snaked her head over and brushed them with her snout. Cinna stood, stretching all her muscles. You can do it Little One, use your head. Cinna smiled at Raja, Thank you, I could not do it without you None of the crowd had wavered and now looked extremely apprehensive.

Cinna stood in front of Arya and drew her sword, its blade rippled in the light. Angela raised a palm, "Begin!" Cinna leapt forward, aiming straight for Arya's heart. Arya parried and slashed at Cinna's side in a counter attack. This blow was likewise blocked; many blows such as this were traded, given, and received. Their glistening bodies and flowing hair spun in whirlwinds as their swords met in crashes of showering sparks. They would almost touch, golden hair mixing with midnight locks for a breath before momentum whirled them away from each other. For the better part of an hour, the battle raged, with each movement dozens of sweat drops stained the ground. The women's harsh breathing permeated the air, veins stood out over straining muscles as they fought to overpower the other. With a monumental effort, Cinna arched Fae'ling in a complex butterfly sweep, sending Arya's blade spinning into the dust. Fae'ling snaked forward to kiss Arya's throat, "Dead." Cinna spat.

She did not lower her sword until Arya bowed, "Svit-kona eka celobra ono un malabra un se onr sverdar sitja hvass." Then she retrieved her sword and walked away, the crowd parting for her as she disappeared into Trojehiem. For a long moment, the crowd was completely silent. Raja's loud, triumphant, screech prompted Saphira to bugle loudly. Every man and dwarf cheered deafeningly, Angela just smiled smugly. Murtagh ran up and embraced her tightly, planting a long, deep, kiss on her lips. Eragon and Saphira came next, Cinna hugged Eragon good-naturedly and stood perfectly still as Saphira's deadly maw ruffled her long hair. Orik bowed deeply to her, "I have never seen your equal with a blade young Rider." Cinna clasped his forearms and nodded her thanks. Behind them all came Raja, I knew you could do it my little one. For a moment they stood a hair's breadth apart, then Raja lay his feathered head on her shoulder, purring in contentment. Cinna and Murtagh returned to the dragon hold after a day of exploring the vast city. Eragon remained in Trojehiem with Raja and Saphira.

Even though they were enthralled by Cinna's victory, reality was beginning to set in. Murtagh and Cinna lay together in the dragon hold, talking quietly. "Murtagh, war is almost upon this land…what if…" His wiry arms tightened around her body protectively, "Don't talk that way, we're going to get through this, you, Raja, me, Eragon and Saphira." He turned them over so he could peer down at her. The blue plane of her irises reminded him of the tide of the ocean. Rolling shades of green and brown swirled deep in their depth seemed to swell as Cinna's pupils shrank to pinpricks, and a tear escaped one eye, only then did Murtagh realize the depth of her terror. "Hey, hey, don't cry, it's going to be alright." Murtagh soothed, gently laying kisses on her cheeks, eyelids, nose, forehead, and slowly worked his way to her throat. Cinna tangled her fingers in his hair and kissed his temple. When Murtagh reached the ties of her shirt, he peered back into her eyes. Cinna held his face in her hands and locked her mouth on his in a deep, passionate kiss. They saw something in each other's eyes. The realization they could very well die in this war. They loved each other deeply and this could be the only time they could be together.

Murtagh unlaced her shirt and threw it aside; tenderly he kissed the new, bare skin of her collarbone. Cinna's hands slithered into Murtagh's shirt and pulled it over his head. Murtagh's lips and breath ghosted over Cinna's lace-covered breasts. Cinna leaned up slightly so Murtagh could undo the clasp of her delicate bra. As Cinna's fingers danced of over the swell of Murtagh's muscles, particularly his abs and pecs, Eragon came bounding inside. Neither Cinna nor Murtagh noticed, Murtagh was busy nipping and sucking Cinna's breasts and she whimpered quietly. Eragon's eyes widened and he backed out of the room quickly and quietly as he could and dashed back to Saphira and Raja. What in the world are they doing? he asked them both as he projected what he had seen. Both of them fell into insane fits of laughter. Eragon stood there dumbly they argued who would explain it to him. In the end Raja shared with him his memories and instincts. Eragon's pale face blushed crimson, "Sorry I asked," he muttered under his breath and walked away shaking his head. Saphira and Raja looked at each other slyly, then rushed over to the door and stuck their heads inside. By now Murtagh and Cinna had divested each other's bodies of any and all clothing. He trailed his fingers down her body and halted at her heated core. Cinna panted heavily as Murtagh stroked her outer folds and swirled the soft, golden curls between his fingers.

Cinna moaned quietly, "Please Murtagh." Kissing her softly, Murtagh slipped a finger inside Cinna's velvet walls. Cinna's eyes snapped open and she arched into his hand. Smiling as he watched her writhe beneath him, Murtagh added another digit. A pained expression came over Cinna's features for a moment, but the tips of Murtagh's fingers brushed against a part of her that caused her to cover her mouth to stifle a loud moan. Looking deep into her eyes Murtagh knew Cinna wouldn't last much longer. Coming out of a pleasurable haze Cinna looked at Murtagh, with a wicked grin she ran one hand down his body and took his heated manhood into her grasp. Murtagh groaned and buried his face in her shoulder. Cinna skillfully manipulated her fingers and palm until Murtagh thrust into her hand. When he was on the brink of release he caught her wrist, "Let's save the fireworks for a little later," he chuckled. Despite herself Cinna giggled as well.

They kissed again, much to the annoyance of their spectators. Saphira snorted at the lack of progress. Murtagh's head shot up but Saphira and Raja ducked their heads out of the doorway before he saw them. Now Murtagh looked deeply into Cinna's eyes, positioning himself as he did so. With gentle tenderness he entered her body with a sweet, slow, languid thrust. Cinna clutched Murtagh's back as he moved inside her. He lifted his lips to her ears and whispered, "Are you alright?" Cinna answered by wrapping a slender, muscular leg around his waist to pull him in even deeper.

For several long moments all Saphira and Raja heard was heavy breathing, punctuated with an occasional moan. At the height of their lovemaking by some unspoken sentiment Murtagh and Cinna reversed positions. In a whirl of golden curls Cinna moved on top of Murtagh without missing a beat. Saphira and Raja's eyes widened, and a soft kiss issued from both creatures. Cinna's head snapped around with inhuman speed and just glimpsed their retreating heads. For the moment she was distracted Murtagh gripped one of Cinna's hips and turned them again. Cinna was jolted into the present by the incredible sensations rolling through their bodies.

Cinna's back arched and her toes curled as her walls tightened around Murtagh. As they reached their climaxes Murtagh claimed Cinna's lips with his own in the sweetest, most loving kiss that could not belie their feelings. As they basked together in the afterglow Raja came inside and actually climbed into the bed, lying beside them with his head on Cinna's hip. As she gently stroked his feathered head he looked at her with his intelligent liquid eyes.

I'm glad you found someone to love. Cinna smiled, There's always room in my heart for you. Raja began purring, And I for you. A few moments of silence passed, Murtagh had dozed off. Raja? The griffin cracked open one great eye, Yes? Cinna's eyes filled with tears, I'm you don't have anyone to love. Raja's mental laughter confused her, I have you, friend of my heart, and you are all I need. Cinna extinguished the lamp with a quiet word and whispered to Murtagh, "I love you." A long arm snaked around her, pulling her close, "I love you too."

The loud pounding of booted feet above the dragon hold startled Cinna and Murtagh awake. Come, get up! A battle is at hand! Raja cried, rising onto his hind feet and screeching his excitement. Hurriedly Cinna and Murtagh dressed, grabbed their armor and flew to the base of Trojehiem. Angela rushed up to meet them, "Hurry, put your armor on!" Cinna began fastening Raja's while Angela buckled helped her into her own. Before donning the chest piece and helm Cinna engraved with magic the symbol of the pact on the chest piece and on the helm her gedwey insignia. She put the pact symbol on Murtagh's chest and both on Raja's.

When she'd finished Angela practically threw her onto Raja and slapped his rump, "Fly!" Cinna gripped Raja tightly as he trumpeted his primal cry. The Varden warriors cheered to see them streaking across the sky. They spotted Eragon and Saphira in the armory's cave and landed at the mouth. She leapt off and looked them over, "Shall we dance Rider?" Eragon hugged her tightly, "Only with my girls." Cinna hugged back and petted Saphira's nose. Raja and Saphira touched noses and growled quietly. Cinna drew her sword and faced the mouth of the cave, Raja at her side. Eragon and Saphira took their places beside them.

"Many as one, and one as many," Eragon intoned. "To the skies and to the death, together we fight," Cinna finished. Raja and Saphira roared in agreement, fire spilling from Saphira's maw. With the precision that could not be natural, both Riders and their steeds soared among the troops, bolstering courage and lifting morale. Now they went to Ajihad's side, to hear what their leader had to say.

The Varden's leader was already garbed for war, he and Jormundur stood pouring over a map. Arya was there as well. Eragon was dimly aware of a rush of adrenaline and hate course through Cinna so strongly that when Saphira opened her mind to speak with her, he felt it. Raja shuffled his wings, Do not do anything in front of Ajihad you may regret. With a force of will Cinna ignored Arya and listened to what Ajihad had to say. "Cinna, you and Raja are the only ones who can fly, archers or not, save your strength and await the battle, you take orders from no one." Cinna nodded and awaited to know any other orders.

"Eragon, Saphira, and Arya, it is your job to collapse the tunnels, someone will inform you when the battle is at hand." When they left the study Cinna and Raja took to the skies again, searching for Murtagh. They found him in a battalion not far from the armory, armored and carrying his sword. Cinna dismounted and rushed into Murtagh's arms. For long moments they said nothing, finally Murtagh flung their helms off and kissed her fiercely. When they broke apart Murtagh shuffled a moment before pulling an old, but beautiful ring from his left hand. The band was wrought of slender, ornate silver. Nestled in the middle was a sapphire brighter than Saphira's scales and as deep as Cinna's eyes.

"My mother gave me this before she disappeared, I would have sold it long before but I'd always hoped that I'd find an amazing woman that would steal my heart, you're the one I never thought I'd have." Cinna's eyes filled with tears as he slipped it onto her left hand, "I want to ask you for your hand, I have nothing to give you but my heart, would you have me?" Cinna threw her arms around him, "Of course I'll have you." Murtagh stroked her hair back from her face, "When this is all over we'll make a home together and raise a family." Happily he kissed her, they broke apart as warning horns sounded. Murtagh jammed Cinna's helm onto her head, "Fly for us Cinna, us and Alagaesia."

As she and Raja flew off a tear coursed down Murtagh's cheek, which he let dry on his face. By now the battle was full and thick. Eragon and Saphira were forced to remain grounded until Fae'ling tasted the archer's blood. When they were dead Eragon and Saphira followed them into the sky, dousing the enemy in torrents of dragon fire.

The fighting continued for endless hours. Eragon and Saphira worked laboriously to defend Hrothgar, Ajihad, and Arya. Cinna and Raja fought solely for themselves, they did not have the assistance of fire so they had to fight with more of themselves. At regular intervals Raja landed to fight on the ground. Cinna held no mercy for her enemies, if and Urgal stood before her he died. Suddenly she was faced with a huge Kull. At over 8 feet tall he soared 2 ½ feet over Cinna's head. His grating laugh set Cinna's teeth on edge, "I'm going to have fun with you, girlie."

Suddenly Raja leapt over her and batted the Kull to the side as easily as a cat would a ball of yarn. The Kull went down with four deep slashes in his face. Through the tumult of the battle Angela's voice battered her defenses, Eragon's in trouble, to the base of Trojehiem with all haste! Cinna leapt onto Raja's back and he crouched to fly away but not before an Urgal's spear found its mark in her knee and broke off at the tip as Raja took off. Cinna shrieked, sweat rolling down her face. Are you alright, Little One? Cinna growled, trying to keep the pain at bay, I'll live but not if I can't get this wound to stop hurting.

Raja leveled his flight and landed. Eragon rushed toward them. Cinna slipped off and Eragon caught her. "What happened?" Cinna's face was grey with pain, "Urgal's spear." "It's got to come out." If it were possible Cinna's face got even whiter. I'll try to shield you from the pain as much as possible, Raja said, his voice tight. Eragon grasped the spearhead and Cinna's fingers tightened on his shoulder, "I'm sorry Cinna." With one fierce tug Eragon pulled the blade from her leg. Although her fingers bit painfully into Eragon's shoulder muscles, Cinna didn't make a sound. As blood flowed freely from the wound Cinna swayed, almost unconscious. "No you don't, stay with me," Eragon whispered. He removed their gloves and they whispered, "Waise heil." As the magic knitted the flesh back together Cinna's eyes rolled into the back of her head, "Eragon…Durza's coming."

They broke off the magic and drew their swords, Raja, go find Saphira! Raja launched himself into the sky, streaking through the bloody dawn. Durza appeared in the hall, Urgals at his side, "So my young Riders, we meet again, it was foolish to escape me in Gi'lead." Cinna spun Fae'ling with a wordless snarl. The Urgals charged Cinna, catcalling and circling her. Cinna just smirked as they closed around, then with a thrust of her sword she stabbed one Urgal in the heart and leapt away. The crowd of Urgals followed, slashing at her retreating form. Eragon was still battling Durza as a huge Kull entered the hall.

Standing at over 9 feet tall he picked Cinna up by the throat and threw her across the room. Only a quick twist saved her from being impaled on her own sword. She heard Eragon's scream of pain as Durza laid open his back and launched herself at Durza. Her speed caught him off guard and she was able to lay bare the bone of his sword arm. The deafening shattering of the Isidar Mithrim caused them all to look upward. Saphira plunged through the opening, head first with Arya on her back. At their side was Raja, screaming his battle cry. As Eragon buried Zar'roc in Durza's heart Arya leapt off Saphira's back and drove her blade through Raja's armor to rip him open from sternum to flank. Cinna's wordless cry made Eragon's hair stand on end.

Not even Saphira moved to stop her from striking Arya on the face with her sword, lancing a long cut from her eye to the opposite jaw, maiming her face forever. Using the last of her energy Cinna curled close to Raja, I'm sorry I couldn't protect you. Raja's voice was weak, but steady, It was not your duty to protect me from an unseen enemy, that lies on my shoulders, I'm sorry that I wouldn't have been able to protect you if she had targeted you. Tears now bathed Raja's ghastly wound, How am I supposed to live without you? Raja sighed, The same way I lived without you for centuries in my egg. Cinna shook her head, I could never forget you, you're the half that makes me whole. Raja's voice was fading, You are destined for greater things than to die for me, live, learn, and love with my blessing. A death rattle hissed out of Raja's bloodied beak.

Eragon and Saphira stood at their side, Eragon started to kneel by her but Cinna snarled, warning him away. Saphira felt his surprise, She's hurting Little One, be gentle with her. Eragon swayed and went down next to Cinna, she drew him close and Saphira covered them with a wing. She was alone except for Arya, and waited the end of the battle.

Despite their shock and injuries, Eragon and Cinna only slept a day in a half. Eragon beat Cinna by an hour. She almost fought awakening as a fresh wave of agony over Raja's loss crashed over her. Murtagh's grip on her hand gave her the courage to open her eyes. Tears coursed down her cheeks as she struggled to sit up. Angela's strong hands forced her back down. Murtagh's eyes conveyed every emotion that Cinna herself felt, enamoration, fear, sadness, and the courage to soldier on. Eragon and Saphira both expressed their condolences, Saphira soothed her by telling her, We are going to rescue the two other eggs, all of us, as soon as the service is over. Angela let her sit up slowly, handing her a wineskin. The alcohol helped clear her throat and mind. "Where is that murdering elf?" She rumbled low in her throat. Angela and Eragon looked at each other, "She's returned to Ellesmera," Murtagh said. "The cowardly, murdering traitor!" Cinna yelled, hands curling into lethal fists. Angela put a hand on her shoulder, "She will pay for the atrocity she's committed, of that you can be sure," the witch intoned, "Just don't do anything stupid."


Two weeks later Eragon, Murtagh, and Cinna had packed and were ready to depart. Murtagh and Cinna had been given a huge war stallion apiece. Cinna's horse was a huge beast splashed with brown, black, and white. He was a typical headstrong young stallion. Murtagh's was a red roan with a head a yard long. Raja had been buried in a tomb as grand as Ajihad's. Lovingly Cinna had removed his armor and washed his body but left his fatal wound intact. It was no secret among the Varden what Arya had done.

Cinna herself was inconsolable. Her mind was fortified even beyond Saphira's power. Murtagh was trying his hardest to soothe her, holding her tightly when she slept and when she cried, and the restrain the showed by leaving her alone when he could bear her silence no longer. In the early dawn hours before they left Murtagh awoke to see Cinna curled up with her head on his chest, purring gently. Murtagh smiled and caressed her cheek. Cinna raised her head and looked at him with clear blue eyes and the first smile he'd seen since Raja died. He leaned up and kissed her. "I'm glad you're back." Cinna kissed back, "As much as I can be." When she changed from her nightgown to her breeches and shirt Murtagh noticed she now had pinfeathers down the back of her neck and spine. He smiled as he thought about how much fun he would have playing with them.

AN: I want to thank all of my supporters that helped me throughout the course of this story. Especially my best friend and beta Rhy. There will be a part two with references to Eldest. Also, half of part two will be devoted to the rescuing of the eggs, my own story line. Look for me and I will have another story soon.

All my love, Drifter.