Rosetta slowly opened her eyes. Light poured in from the cave opening and a bright white figure appeared in front of her. She rubbed her eyes to clear her vision. Rosetta was face to face with Milori's owl. The owl let out a small chirp and Rosetta leaped to her feet, screaming.
Everyone else sat up, groggy eyed.
"Rosetta? What's going on?" Fawn asked.
"Lord Milori's owl nearly scared the petals off of me!".
Everyone now stood surrounding Rosetta, brushing golden dust off themselves.
"What is this stuff?" Silvermist asked.
Tink rubbed some of the dust between two of her fingers. It was finer than pixie dust but didn't glow. She sprinkled some on her head and her eyes grew heavy. "You know what, I think I'm gonna take a nap," she yawned as she lowered herself to the ground and almost instantly fell asleep.
"Tink!" the others cried.
After a few short moments Tink awoke. "What happened?".
"I think this is some sort of sleeping dust!" Silvermist stated.
Both Silvermist and Fawn helped Tink to her feet.
"Has anyone seen Lord Milori at all this morning?" Fawn asked.
"Afraid not, sugar," Rosetta replied. Everyone else had the same answer.
"Where could he have gone?".
"Do you think he left without us?" Silvermist added.
"I don't think so guys," Vidia replied.
Everyone turned towards her. She stood near the opening of the cave holding something. Vidia handed Milori's cape that had Queen Clarion's crown wrapped in, to Tink. "I don't think Lord Milori left on his own,".
"What do you think happened to him?" Iridessa asked.
A black feather suddenly floated past them to the back wall of the cave. Lord Milori's owl snatched it up with its talons, and clenched his claws together until the feather disappeared.
Everyone instantly had the same thought. They were on their own and now had to rescue, not only Queen Clarion and Periwinkle, but now Lord Milori.
"How are we supposed to find them now? Lord Milori is gone! He's the one who knew where we were going! We're going to get lost out here forever!," Iridessa exclaimed.
"Iridessa, sweetie, calm down before you," Rosetta began before Iridessa started to hyperventilate and passed out, "Pass... Out... Again... Okay... What do we do now?".
"Well, we must be on the right track, why else would they take Lord Milori?" Fawn asked.
"She's right, why else would they take Lord Milori?" Silvermist added.
"Ok, so we're on the right track, but how do we stay on it?" Fawn asked.
"Both Lord Milori and his owl were leading us," Tink replied, "So maybe his owl can lead the way still!".
Everyone turned towards the large owl behind them. It nodded towards them in reply with a noticably feirce look in his eye.
"Great! So what do we do about Iridessa?" Rosetta asked.
"I got this," Vidia replied. "Iridessa, someone's messing up your rainbow!".
Iridessa instantly awoke and sat up. "What's going on? Who's messing up my rainbow?".
"Oh no one, it was just the fastest way to wake you up,".
"Don't kid about that kind of thing Vidia!".
"Oh fine, but it was still fun to see you freak out about it," she laughed.
"Now that everyone's awake, it's time to save my sister, Queen Clarion, and Lord Milori!" Tink stated.
Everyone nodded and walked over to their owls. As they were about to leap onto them a sudden roar echoed into the cave from the mountains above.
"What was that?" Iridessa cried.
"Would you believe me if I said an avalanche?" Fawn asked.
"Nope," she replied and proceeded to pass out on the floor again.
"Vidia, you got this?" Rosetta asked.
"Yep, give me a minute," she stated and leaped off of her owl.
Clarion awoke with a sudden alarm, a noise of some sort had awoken her. Periwinkle continued to sleep at the opposite end of the cage where she had fallen asleep staring into night sky. It was early, not even the first light of day had shown yet, but bowls that surrounded the cage were lit with fire, creating a dim light that spread across the room.
Another sudden noise behind her made her jump. The crows were still asleep, perched on the gnarled, rotting roots along the wall, but Nefarious was nowhere to be seen. She feared he was just trying to torture her even more.
Clarion cautiously turned her gaze behind her to the cage beside theirs. Something sat leaned up against the metal bars of the cage. When her eyes focused she saw a familiar figure.
Milori sat awake, covered in golden dust, awoken by haunting dreams. The ropes that had bound his wrists together were now gone. He let out a grunt of pain as he slowly, but still painfully, shifted so he faced the cage bars and brushed the dust off of himself. A faint glow could be seen across the way, where there was also a pair of sapphire eyes staring back at him. The very same sapphire eyes that he had fallen in love with all those seasons ago. "Clarion," he whispered.
"Milori," Clarion let a sigh of relief.
"Where's," Milori let out another grunt of pain, "Periwinkle?".
"Milori, you're hurt!" she spoke with great concern.
"I'm fine,", he let out a pained noise moments after finishing the sentence.
"No you're not, let me heal you," Clarion begged as she took his hand which hung outside of the cage.
Milori's eyes widened, her skin was colder than the winter wind and was dangerously paler than his own, she looked more tired than any fairy had ever been and dark circles hung under her sapphire eyes. She was growing weaker by the minute and there was nothing he could do about it.
"No, you'll need your strength. I'll be fine,".
"I can't bare to see you suffer this pain,".
"And I can't be released from this painful burden at the price of losing you,".
There was a look of desperation in her eyes, but the concern he had for her showed in his own.
"Please," he pleaded.
Clarion let out a sigh. She then let go of his hand and turned away.
Milori raised his hand to her cheek and lightly caressed her. Clarion held his hand against her face a moment, and when she turned towards him, he could see the tears welling in her eyes. "Clarion, it's going to be ok,".
She shut her eyes tight a moment, the tears rolled down her cheeks and dropped to the metal floor. Her gaze fell towards him again. He managed a small, unpained smile that brightened her and held his hand out to her. Clarion managed a small smile as well and placed her hand in his palm.
"Now please, try and get some rest," Milori spoke with all the love he had for her.
The sound of his voice and his mere presence comforted her, and this time he was real. Their eyes stayed transfixed on each other for a few quiet moments. His majestic, silvery eyes were kind and loving, but mysterious like an owl's. Clarion nodded and shifted so she was leaned up against the metals bars on her side, still holding his hand.
Knowing she was getting some rest put Milori's mind at ease as he watched over her. His body ached, not only from the throbbing pain in his side, but also for warmth. The fire near the edges of the cage tempted him, but he didn't want to leave Clarion. Every time he'd left her side something terrible happened, and he didn't want to lose her for good, but then again there was also his dream that worried him.
The crow had said, in the end you shall lose what's closest to you.
Milori worried that the crow's words would come true like the words it had spoken before. He and Clarion now both suffered the price of their love. If he were lost to her forever, she would be alone, trapped in a state of regret and guilt.
As he continued to sit there in pain his gaze wandered towards the crows. Each of them slept, looking just as evil as they did when awake. Oddly though, there was one crow that was still awake. It watched him with a pair of familiar emerald eyes. A wave of sadness washed over him, the eyes reminded him of a tragic event that was etched into his mind. Milori's gaze fell back towards Clarion, there she slept peacefully, still hand in hand with him. Then again his sight met with the crow and it tilted its head towards the cage Clarion was held in.
Milori felt another set of eyes watching him. He glanced over to the cage where he saw the faint outline of a fairy, a pair of teal eyes stared back at him. Periwinkle. She inched her way out of the shadows very slowly. The look upon her face asked one question. It was the look of a sister desperate to find her other half. Milori nodded in reply and a smile crept onto Periwinkles face.