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***An excerpt from Dark Fey: Standing In Shadows, where Mardan and Gairynzvl find themselves, yet again, across purposes; yet in this scene Gairynzvl surprises everyone….***

Getting up from the place near the hearth where he sat meditatively, Mardan fixed his wings with resolute purpose and moved towards the Dark One brooding on the opposite side of the room, yet even as he walked nearer, Gairynzvl turned aside, unable even to entertain the possibility of  another quarrel with the quick-tempered Celebrant, but when Mardan reached him, he stood wordlessly for a moment before speaking.

“She cannot help it, you know that.”  Mardan reminded him, tempering his own annoyance with Ayla’s perpetual emotional frailty with as much insight as he could manage.  Moving closer to speak more confidentially, Mardan lowered his voice to nearly a whisper.

“I cannot comfort her; she will not allow me close to her in the shadows and confusion that have enveloped her.  It would seem that you are the only one, at present, who can.”  He did not realize what he was saying, but his words rang in Gairynzvl’s thoughts as the Elder’s questions, put to him just days before, resounded in his thoughts.

Will you share your strength of purpose, your tenacity and resilience with her where there are only shadows of confusion?  Will you comfort her even when there is no comfort to be found?

Returning Mardan’s piercing gaze, he shook his head subtly, speaking in an equally soft tone so that only he could hear.

“It was not my intention to steal her from you.”


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