Wyllo sat on the ground with a little blonde girl on her lap, the child focusing incredibly hard on the stems of her collected wild daisies, trying to make the perfect crown. The child’s mother sat next to them, on a small stool removing the ends of snap peas. The country air smelled of greens, the ground and squash blooms as the sun beat gently down on Hillsbrad. She had her eyes closed, face to the warm rays and palms in the rich soil propping herself and the toddler up.
“Auntie Lyllo…” A little voice pipped up curiously and Wyllo opened her eyes to set her gaze on the child who was the spitting image of her lovely mother.
“Yes Sunbeam?” The Ranger answered in a soft, affectionate tone.
“Ya don’t haveta to go right?” Her big sweet eyes pleading with a quivering bottom lip.
Wyllo pulled the girl into a fierce hug, nibbling at her nose causing a chorus of giggles.
“Noana, your Aunt has work in the City…” The other woman pipped up, hands still moving by habit without regarding her work. “Thank her for the visit.”
The child nodded sadly and wrapped her little arms around Wyllo’s neck. “Thank you Auntie Lyllo…” She spoke the words dutifully.
It was a quick visit, they always were. A weekend here, three days there. The Bloodshield farm was more than a home away from home. It was sanctuary, where life slowed down and made sense. It had been since she was a girl. Her parents were lovely people but sad, mourning an unthinkable loss. It was Ms. Bloodshield who offered her supper on the days her own mother was unable to get out of bed. It was this house that was full of life and light when her home was so dark.
Even now as an adult this quaint farm was the only true home her heart knew. Following the odd conversation with Vel and her mother Saturday night there was only one place she could go to clear her head. The sanctity shattered shortly after her arrival with a letter from the Monk. She had read it so many times, the words feeling so odd to her. It was business, professional. Simply information, a very large shipment of unorganized dragonhawks.
It took her away from her family, pulled her back too the odd situation she didn’t truly wish to think about. It was for the dragons, to be sure they were taken care of and by the sound of it, she had a lot of work to do, as the letter spoke of the animals yet again as cargo, as things, objects. A shipment of vases, of grain, of dried fish. They were only a commodity to a woman she had thought she was getting to know… but found out all too rudely, she had no idea of.
She hugged Seth, the gesture lingering as if the thought of letting go was unbearable. She felt tears and she didn’t know why, there was nothing to cry about. It was just a job, just a girl, just… The beautiful ranch faded from view behind her, replaced with the Forsaken guard tower ahead as she moved from Hillsbrad to Silverpine ready to return to the City, very certain after her respite she was no ones leverage. It was gossip taken too far, her boss was only that, it seemed now, all to clear to her.