Note: This is a cleaned up/edited “flash fiction” version of a dream. Effort has been made to stay as true to the dream itself as possible.
Just when I thought we would never be done with walking, the undergrowth cleared, and there, finally, terrifying, was the beast. It stood watching us as if it had been waiting all along for our arrival. Its red aura painted a wicked, pulsing light on the trees around it, their bark seeming to ripple and wither away in its glow.
My body quivered with the instinct to flee. Jaren, unnoticing, stood ready to fight. But still the beast waited. I reached out and shook Jaren’s arm to get his attention. I don’t remember what I meant to say, but the words that came out were, “I’m going to run.” He turned then, shock raising his eyebrows, but he didn’t say anything.
“My powers won’t work here.” I held out my hands, a combined gesture of display and helplessness. The marks on my palms were already fading. Jaren saw and nodded, his face impenetrable once again. But for the first time since I’d known him, I thought I saw fear in his eyes.
I turned to go, the flight instinct creeping back in, but hesitated. I looked back to see Jaren watching me. His armored form eclipsed the waiting beast, a bloody corona casting his features into shadow. Feeling something more needed to be said, but not sure what, instead I closed the gap between us, and took hold of his collar, hauling him down into a kiss.
I had thought about what it might be like before, though in such girlish fantasies, it had always been him coming to me, my mouth yielding under his. I’m not quite sure exactly what I expected, but found myself more than pleasantly surprised when there was no hesitation in him. As our lips met, his kiss was soft and urgent — and over much too quickly. As he broke away, I placed both palms against the cool surface of his breastplate, pouring the remnants of my power into him.
He took my hands and squeezed them gently, and I could see the fear had melted from his face. Somewhere in the back of my mind, I wished that it might be because of more than my magic, and that I might see him again to find out.
But Jaren dropped my hands and turned toward the beast again. The last thing he said was, “I will find you. Run.”