Magpie had been dreading this for quite some time. It had been bad enough when she was merely visiting the Moonlit Gardens in her spare time. Now that she and Narael were there to stay... She took his hand and gave him a smile full of much more confidence than she felt. Narael smiled back, but he looked a little sick to his stomach. She hoped it was just homesickness for the world, but she had the distinct feeling it wasn't. She herself felt the finality of her last trip over the familiar bridge move back to make room for her nervousness about the coming meeting.
Souls on the banks murmured greetings to her. They knew that she was there for good now. Magpie was old. She'd lived everything she had wanted to live. Her time had come. Narael said his had too, and indeed he was old as well, but Magpie had the feeling he mostly considered her time to be his.
Narael looked around shyly, taking in the afterworld. And awkwardly trying not to look at the stony blond figure emerging from the expanse of cottages, Magpie noted. She gave his hand a comforting squeeze. She had the feeling it would be he that walked away the more miserable man from the coming confrontation. Her husband had always been too timid. He couldn't argue to save his life. Well, not with strangers.
Talon waited for them on the edge of the crowd, eyes narrowed, arms crossed. He still looked so young. He always would, of course, but every time she saw him Magpie's stomach gave a twist of regret. He'd been barely one hundred and eighty when he died, caught off guard on what should have been a simple find-and-retrieve mission to collect some famous relic or the other. It was probably her greatest regret that she'd been unable to save him, and he'd been unable to ever meet their daughter.
She let go of Narael's hand to embrace Talon briefly, and then stepped back to make introductions.
"Talon, this is Narael. My husband. Narael, this is Talon. My, erm...other husband," she said, gesturing awkwardly between the two of them.
Talon gave Narael an acidic once over, but the other fairy man refused to meet his eyes. The jealousy and quiet rivalry emanating off of both of them was enough to make Magpie squirm.
They stood in silence for a minute, the seconds stretching out impossibly. Just when Magpie began to think she might explode, rescue came in the form of her parents. As soon as she caught a glance of them weaving their way through the crowd toward her, she bolted off.
"Right. Well, I'm going to go talk to my parents. I'll find you later," she called over her shoulder. Both of her husbands shot her looks that screamed how could you leave me alone with him, but she didn't look back.
She'd deal with it later. After all, she had forever.