Isellta held Jay’s hand as they walked down the darkened hallway.
Jay squeezed his hand.
Robin scanned the monitors one more time.
If he ain’t there…
His mind fell silent.
Two figures walked down the dark hallway.
One was tall and broad-shaped.
The other was thin and delicate-looking.
Robin slowly sat in his chair.
He watched them move from monitor to monitor.
Is it you?
Isellta tightened his grip on Jay’s hand. “Jay. What if I’m wrong? What if he isn’t there? What if…”
“If he isn’t there, we’ll go into the kitchen and eat our way through Preyuna’s secret stash of Dove ice cream bars. She’ll be furious about it, but it will make you feel better.”
Isellta blinked quickly. “She likes ice cream?”
“Ice cream bars.”
“Do they taste good?”
Jay smiled. “So good.” He chuckled. “You’ll probably like them more than you like pickles.”
Isellta flapped his wings.
Robin’s breath caught in his throat.
He wanted to cry and laugh all at the same time.
I know that wing flap.
My stupid little fey.
They entered the control room.
Robin covered his mouth with his hands as Isellta entered the room.
Isellta sat down at the monitors.
Robin was on the monitor and he was looking right at him.
He uncovered his mouth.
Isellta smiled and Robin felt warm all over.
He reached forward and touched the screen.
Isellta touched the screen.
I wish you were here with me.
He felt a powerful need to run to him, to jump into his arms, to hold him.
Does he feel it too?
Robin’s legs jittered.
I need him.
I need to go to him.
I need to just grab him and kiss him all over that face of his.
“Isellta. I love you.”
His good eye teared up.
He loves me.
He does love me.
Even though he felt like crying, his wings flapped.
“Robin. Come to me. Save me. I miss you. I need you. Robin. I love you.”
Robin felt like someone had spiked his insides with fish hooks and fishing lines and they were pulling him. Trying so hard to pull him forward.
He loves me.
My Isellta loves me.
He ain’t that heartless fey, after all.
He’s my Isellta.
My soft, sweet Isellta.
Isellta spoke again.
And, even though Robin couldn’t hear his voice, he still got the message.
Come to me.
“I will. Isellta, I will. I need you so bad.”
There’s so much I wanna tell him.
But not now.
I want him to hear it.
He looked at Isellta’s smile.
The fish hooks dug in deeper and the fishing lines pulled tighter.
“I will come for you. I promise.”
Antioch took the elevator down to the basement level.
He left the elevator and walked down a curved hallway. Bared lightbulbs hung from the industrial-styled ceiling.
He stopped at the first door on his right and knocked on it.
Capernaum answered the door. “Antioch. I see you managed to get out of your…meeting?”
“Yes. As for the project I assigned to you?”
“It is complete. XQ’s memories no longer exist in our archives.”
“And there are no duplicates anywhere on file?”
Antioch thought about Raven and smiled. “Good. I knew I could rely on you to get it done.” He sighed. “Do you mind if I just sit here a while?”
“Come on in.”