20a (Argentum’s Song – PG)

Chapter Twenty

“Please, please don’t stop … that’s the most beautiful song I’ve ever heard!”

Martha must have managed to convey her sense of desperation through her whisper, as Argent returned the flute to his lips and played. Martha closed her eyes and went to rest her head on her hands. Only one hand was there to catch it and she nearly tumbled as she overbalanced to compensate. The missing limb almost pulled her into panic but the song soothed her by its embrace. Too soon the song ended again and she felt Argent lay his fur poncho around her shoulders as he sat down beside her. She looked to him in desperation.

“I’ll play again, I promise, I just have some questions I need to ask.”

Martha took him at his word and relaxed … that song was the only thing that made any sense in her jumbled mind.

“We can’t just stay here forever though … it’s dangerous. There is still at least one weirwolf out here somewhere.”

“I … remember … we were attacked by them I think … yes by two or three I think”

She felt like she was waking from a dream, or maybe the opposite like she was waking into a nightmare. She felt her vision slowly clouding over as she talked.

“… it bit me on the ar-”

She looked to where her arm should have been and, without the song’s help this time she did panic.

“Where is it! What happened … why did you take my arm?”

She turned toward Argent ready to make him pay for his theft … only, as she did, the song returned and she decided no one capable of bringing her such a message of peace could also have been responsible for her loss. As her breathing slowed and vision cleared she realized she didn’t care even if he was. Argent paused.

“It’s O.K.. I was bit once too, in the leg.”

Argent unwrapped the leather and fur from his calf and revealed a terrible scar.

“I know it’s scary and I’ll keep playing, just tell me what happened … I’m Argent by the way.”

“Martha. But don’t we know each other from before? You didn’t used to play like that though … I can’t remember much.”

However, as Argent played Martha found herself remembering and telling more. As she told about Ladin’s second betrayal to her family, she could tell it made Argent angry, and that felt good. Eventually, she came to the attack on the mining camp and stumbled over her words. She peered into Argent’s eyes. What would he think of her if he knew she had been responsible for giving the monsters access to Arny and Bart? She decided she needed him right now and couldn’t risk rejection so she skipped everything after being locked out of the cave.

“After that I don’t remember anything else other than the beast rushing me and grabbing my arm in it’s teeth.”

Argent stopped playing and looked at her reassuringly then he smiled as her stomach let out a grumble.

“I guess that means that you also can’t remember the last time you’ve eaten either.”


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