This short story is part of a series that I have been writing across a series of short blog posts. To read part one, you can click the link here.
Thank you so much for reading and enjoy!
“Who were those men?” Linyeve demanded over Kanalin’s desperate sobs.
“No one, it doesn’t matter,” she cried, face red and blotchy. “How could you let my daughter die?”
Linyeve clenched her fist furiously, the injustice of it all making her lose her temper.
“They killed her, not you and not me! She was dead the minute you hit the wall, now answer me. I have lived through this twice now, and I want to know why. Who were those men, and who – or what – was Ana? I want answers, and you are going to give them to me. I’ve earned them.” Kanalin’s eyes seemed to freeze over as she stared into Linyeve’s face, and she took a deep, steadying breath, holding Jakob close to her.
“I only wanted to protect my children,” she whispered. “A few nights ago, those men – the ones in cloaks – came to me and told me about the fire. I don’t know how it works, so don’t ask me, but they told me what was going to happen to Wrenstead. When they finally got me to believe them, I wanted to run away: of course I did, but they told me that if I did, they would come after me. They would kill us all, Jakob and… K-Kyla, too,” she let out a deep sniff, and then continued.
“They offered me a deal. They told me an orphaned girl was going to visit the village, and that I should go to her. I was to bring her into my house and keep her there. In exchange, they told me that they would take my children, and that they… they would keep them safe. Well, I mean, I’m not very strong and I told them that, so they introduced me to Ana. S-She showed me what she could do with that mind of hers – a family gift, they called it – and told me that she would keep you there. All I had to do was lure you to my house. I was to do whatever it took, an in return, my children would live.” She looked at Linyeve.
“They told me that you’d committed terrible, horrible crimes… and that you had no family. Of course, now I realise they were lying: they lied about all of it. They were never going to keep my children safe. They just wanted you. They said that you should have died, and that you needed to die… I didn’t ask too many questions, but I accepted their deal, and they left.”
“They said I needed to die?” Linyeve interrupted, feeling stunned. Even with Kanalin’s explanation, nothing seemed to make sense. “Why, because I didn’t die in Little Bringleton?” Kanalin didn’t answer, now preoccupied with the sobbing Jakob. “But Ana and this family… I’ve met someone like her before. Are they the ones doing this?”
Kanalin blinked, eyes wide.
“They’re not a family,” she said, her voice hushed. “They’re the family and of course they’re the ones doing it.” When Linyeve still looked confused, Kanalin began to scowl. “The royal family, girl – the house of Pyron.”
Thank you so much for reading! If you’re enjoying the story of “Pyron” so far, please do leave a comment below, and if you want to be notified when the next instalment is out, you can follow this blog through either WordPress or email by clicking on the links in my homepage’s sidebar. Thanks again!
You can read part nine of “Pryon” here.