"Raine, you see it for yourself this morning. Dorian is so nice to me, he cares so much about me." Lidya tried to make Raine to see the other side of this revelation.
"Lidya, being nice and care are not equal to be together." Raine disagreed with that logic, it was so rare for her to voice out her opinion.
Lidya shook her head. "We have to be together with someone one day, thus why aren't we with someone who can protect us?" She shook her head again. "No, actually we protect each other."
Raine didn't interrupt her, she let her to talk more about it.
"Once we bonded, we become stronger, the both of us." Lidya emphasized it, as if that was good news.
However, Raine couldn't see what Lidya saw. Her heart was reeling with one word. "Bonded?"
"Ah" Lidya cleared her throat awkwardly. "You know, once the elder has pointed the shadow warrior, he will be with you forever and then after that you will copulate"
Lidya didn't feel good to explain this thing to Raine, it was a common knowledge for them, so this wasn't something that needed to be explained.
"Once you bonded, you will become stronger." Lidya quickly jumped to the result. "Both of you."
Yet, the result wasn't Raine's concern, but the process. How was that possible? What on earth there was such a rule?
Even though, Raine slept with Torak, but they did nothing. Torak had never done something that made her uncomfortable. He would just hold her in his arms.
And now, Lidya said she would be with completely stranger and bonded?
"No. Lidya, I can't do that!" Raine shrieked, she abruptly stood up. "I I have mate" She said, hoping Lidya would understand.
Torak would never let this happen.
Lidya frowned this time. "We don't use word 'mate', Raine. That words for Lycan."
Raine shook her head. This happened so fast. "But, I am his mate!" She almost shouted at her, how many times she had to say this until they could understand?
"Raine." Lidya stood up and followed Raine's steps as she grabbed her shoulder. "Torak Donovan, the Lycan is cursed by the Moon Goddess herself for not having a mate for his entire immortal life, and for us a guardian angel will never relate to something like that, Raine. That's not for us."
"Lidya You don't understand" Raine took two steps back.
"Raine, don't ever mention Torak's name in front of other people" She warned her. "That's for your safety. Lycanthropes are not welcomed here."
Raine was overwhelmed, there were a lot of words that roamed around in her head that she wanted to voice out, but she didn't know where she should start. Her heart felt so tight because of agitation.
"Raine, you can't run away" Lidya hurriedly grabbed her hand as she turned around, just about to escape. "The shadow warriors are everywhere, once you get caught, the punishment will be severe." She looked around her, afraid if there was someone else heard their squabbles.
"Lidya" Raine struggled to make Lidya released her tight grip. "I can't do that" She was on the verge of crying now.
"Raine, I have told you before, the things are not as bad as you are thinking now." Lidya tried to assure her. "Look at me and Dorian? We love each other now, can you see? It is not that bad."
"No." Raine shook her head adamantly. "If you have to live under their rule and if both of you benefit each other, but why they are the one who control you?"
Lidya bit her lips, but didn't let go of Raine's hands, she held them tightly.
"What happened here!?" A rough and hoarse voice sounded from behind Raine as heavy steps approached them. "Lidya, what is it?"
Lidya hurriedly pulled Raine closed to her and whispered. "Please don't struggle, or things will get worse."
"It's nothing Lex, everything is fine." Lidya said, fortunately Raine cooperated and no longer struggled from her.
The man named Lex tilted his head as he tried to see Raine. "I have never seen her." He pointed Raine with his sharp chin.
"She is the one that I have reported last night." Lidya replied.
Now, all make senses for Raine why Lidya was eager to go even in late hour to make a report about her.
"Oh, I heard that, another guardian angel." Lex nodded. "This is a rare case, I thought all the guardian angels are here, I don't know if there is your kind still out there."
Lidya nodded. "I am surprised too."
"You better bring her to the Elder immediately, we need more help with the border." Lex said begrudgingly as he remembered the wizard hunter had crossed their border again.
"Yes, yes. I will take her to buy dress to wear to the place of Elder." Lidya could feel Raine glared beside her, but she ignored it.
Lex also realized Raine's reaction as he was squinted his eyes at her. "Tell me if you need anything." He said to Lidya, but his eyes didn't leave Raine.
"Sure." Lidya smiled sweetly until Lex turned around and left.
"Lidya you set me up?" Raine asked incredulously once Lex was not within earshot. "How you can do that? I thought"
"Raine, don't think bad about me this is for your own good" Lidya frowned. "As guardian angel, we don't have place to go, nowhere is safe except here."
Raine didn't believe with what she heard. "If you go out there and those creatures sap you energy it will be a big deal, but if you stay here and used by them, it's not worth to mention?"
Raine felt it was totally wrong and for the first time she talked for herself.
"No, but we can live in peace here, they provide us with protection that we need, this is a compromise." Lidya released her grip on Raine's hand. "Come with me and we will pick something nice for you to wear to meet your shadow warrior."
Raine shook her head.
"Or, they will drag you there and the end will be the same. You can't escape Raine, they are everywhere." Lidya's voice softened as she pulled Raine into a hug. "You will love your partner eventually."
Raine didn't answer that, her mind was thinking about the possibility to escape from this place, but where she had to go? How she could find Torak? This place seemingly miles away from Fulbright City.
But, when she thought about it again, she could think about that later, the most important thing now was to run away from this city.
"Let's go." Lidya wiped tears from Raine's cheek. "Don't cry. Your partner will love you." As she said that, Lidya brought her to continue their trip to the place where she could find fine clothes for Raine to wear while talking about the love story between Dorian and her.
Raine didn't listen to that as she busy to see her surroundings, looking for a chance to escape.
However there was one thing that both of them didn't realize the moment they walked away, the Apricity River, which never froze, suddenly glistening as ice formed on the surface of the river, crept slowly and spread like the wind.