Chapter 27

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It was lunchtime when Arhyvhynne noticed that Ghemella was showing signs of not being completely restored to health. They had stopped for a quick meal, their first break since leaving the Towers and their encounter with the vhultards. Though the Guardian tried to hide her obvious discomfort, she was beginning to look pale again and had a slight fever. Arhyvhynne reprimanded her for not saying anything and went to work on another healing, this one being more potent. The healing, in conjunction with some food, helped Ghemella to feel better. Before long, the threesome set out again, reluctant to spend any more time than was necessary for food or rest.

Ghemella rode at a brisk pace and Arhyvhynne kept a close watch on her, looking for signs of a relapse. Uriel tried to concentrate on his riding but was unsuccessful. Aided by the steadily falling rain and repetitive scenery, his thoughts kept straying. First there was Arhyvhynne. Uriel felt terrible about his sharp words to her back at the Towers on the previous day, but was too stubborn to apologize. Especially now that he was on the defensive. He thought she was beginning to suspect what his true relationship with Eyrmysse was. Then there was the black robe herself, his anger at being away from her equal to his longing for her. He also thought of Khyrhyelle, of what might have been and felt some guilt that he had been with one of her daughters. And whenever he had an attack of guilt, memories of Lynn and Danny were not far behind. Overshadowing all his thoughts, however, was his fear that he was riding headlong into his own demise.

So the hours drifted by with only an occasional trifling word or comment until Arhyvhynne pulled up and stopped the party. The High Witch wanted to check the Guardian and it was for good reason. Ghemella once again showed indications of being affected by the welt inflicted by the vhultard. Though the weather was warm and muggy, she was shaking and her flesh was cold and clammy. It was apparent she was in need of further treatment.

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