Records of the Varian Empire
A new emperor
continues from last week
“What?” Moonstar exploded. “We should tolerate Human inhabitants?”
“That’s the Emperor’s command.” Governor Skydreamer looked exhausted. His daughter’s temper wasn’t really easing an already hard situation. “You will have to look after Isabel Blackmore, Sunray will spend his time with Dickon Blackmore.”
Beth’s siblings, Blondsun thought. Luckily Moonstar doesn’t know who Beth really is.
Moonstar had met Beth when she passed herself off as squire Benedetto Black. She knew Beth was a woman and a noble maiden who had run away from her father’s house, but she didn’t know the actual household – the Blackmore Dukes of Havenstock, who were now sending their off-springs to keep an eye on Jinxie on behalf of the young Emperor.
Moonstar had never liked Humans and hated spending time with them. Blondsun tried to appease her, telling her the positive side of Humans, but Moonstar wouldn’t listen.
“I know you and Sunray love those ignorant barbarians, but you’ll never convince me they’re good!” she repeated every time Blondsun tried to talk some sense into her.
Even his brother Silverstar had hated Humans – until Penny had walked into his life. Moonstar’s aversion seemed even more deeply rooted, although Blondsun couldn’t figure out why.
“You should forget my sister,” Sunray suggested at last. “She doesn’t love you. You’re not animkunulo, Blondsun, try to find someone else.”
“Why does she sleep with me, then?” Blondsun asked, depressed.
“You remind her of her first love,” Sunray answered.
Startled, Blondsun stared at him. Moonstar had never mentioned a first love.
“Joystorm was eighteen,” Sunray explained. “He was killed by the Hunter. He was my best friend. He was young, handsome and in love with her, much like you are. When I first met you, you felt familiar, and when you ended up with Moonstar, I realized why. But they were animkunulo, you could only be a surrogate. It’s not really her fault, but you better forget her.”
Blondsun lowered his eyes and sighed. “You mean I’ve been living a four years illusion?”
“I mean you deserve better, Blondsun. You left your family to be with us, I want you to be happy with your choice. Find someone who truly loves you.”
Sunray was right. Moonstar didn’t love him. His first love was unrequited and it was crumbling down.
Blondsun closed his eyes and went into a trance. His astral being left his body and reached Xendaria in a heartbeat. Invisible, he followed Kurt and his family live a normal Human day.
He watched Kurt open the shop with Penny on his heels as Beth breastfed baby Sarah. He listened to their laughter and their chats. He observed the parents and the children, envious of the happy Human family. They’d soon grow old, but they had each other.
Blondsun’s astral body went back as the sun set on Xendaria. The young Genn opened his eyes and sighed, still a little dazed by the trance. He slowly moved his numbed limbs and got to his feet in time to join dinner at the Governor’s table.
The noble Humans had just arrived. Isabel was eighteen and looked haughtily unhappy – much like Moonstar. Dickon Blackmore was different. Brown hair and blue eyes like Beth, he was twenty-one and introverted, so he didn’t talk much – more out of shyness than anything else. He was already married and his wife and firstborn, James, were with him.
Blondsun waited until the end of the dinner when the Humans retired for bed and the Governor’s off-springs took refuge in their apartment. Sunray pretended to be very tired when he saw him, and went to his bedroom. Moonstar glared at her brother as Blondsun sat near her. She closed her book with a snort.
“What do you want?” she snapped. “I had a very bad day!”
“I’m Genn, not Human,” he reminded her, sick of her tantrums. “Don’t lash out at me only because you’re mad at them!”
“I never liked Humans – unlike you,” she retorted.
“Which didn’t prevent you from using them when you thought it appropriate,” he replied. “Much like Vario X did with the Genn.”
“Please, spare me such comparison,” she said, disgusted.
“It’s appropriate,” he said, sarcastic. “You used Kurt to go to Agharek, where otherwise you would have never set foot. You used his sister Penelope as your substitute while you were away, but openly shun her as soon as you came back. That was only four years ago, Moonstar, nobody has forgotten.”
Moonstar’s eyes narrowed. “What’s your point, Blondsun?”
“I’m trying to figure out if you’re just a selfish and manipulative person who used me as well,” he said. “I guess so, as you never told me anything about spending our lives together.”
“We are living together,” she shrugged. “What do you want, a Human wedding?”
“No, I want an animkunulo,” he answered. “And you’re not mine. You like sex, and me or another doesn’t make any difference to you.”
She frowned and averted her eyes, not denying what was now plain obvious even for Blondsun.
“Very well, Moonstar.” He rose, taking in a deep breath. “Find someone else to spend your nights with.”
He turned his back on her and headed for Sunray’s room. He had often crashed on his friend’s spare bed in the past – except now it would be a permanent solution. Unless he moved out of the palace and went to live on his own.
He hoped to hear her voice calling him, but she didn’t. He was alone.
“Hello, Blondsun.” Beth carefully closed the shop door to avoid customers could see the Genn’s glorious beauty. He had materialized in the room with a spell, obviously aware she was alone – how he could see them from Jinxie still baffled Beth, but she was only Human and he was a Genn magic user. “Kurt is upstairs with the girls.”
“I know.” Blondsun stared at her with his sapphire eyes.
“So you’re here for me?” she asked, puzzled. She had stopped wearing male clothes after the wedding and felt more feminine now – but envied Blondsun’s unchanging features.
“Your family…” Blondsun hesitated. “Do you hate them?”
“No, even if they made my life hard,” she smiled. “Sometimes I miss them, especially my brother Dickon.”
“Dickon is very sweet.” Blondsun pondered. “Unlike Isabel who is a brainless and haugthy maiden.”
“How do you know?” she asked, amused.
“Dickon moved to Jinxie,” he answered with a smile. “Emperor’s orders. He brought his wife and his son. Isabel is there too. You can imagine how happy Moonstar is with all those Humans around.”
Beth chuckled. “I can imagine!” She stared at him. “She must be making your life impossible.”
“I live on my own, now,” he said, lowering his eyes. “She never loved me anyway.”
“Poor Blondie.” She hugged him. “Go to Kurt and tell him. And when you go back to Jinxie say hello to Dickon from me.”
The Blackmore Duke had five children that had survived into adulthood. The firstborn and heir, Dafydd, now twenty-five. The second born and hopefully dead – as she had brought mostly shame to the family – Elisabeth, who had vanished years ago. Dickon, twenty-one, and Isabel, eighteen, who were now living in Jinxie by the Emperor’s order – mostly because Isabel had failed to impress him, so until her father found her a proper husband, she would be exiled among the Genn. And James, twenty, the spiritual one who would some day enter a monastery, not interested in his father’s estate.
Dickon was glad to be out of the Blackmore Palace of Havenstock. He had called his son James like his younger brother because he preferred him to the haughty eldest. He was very close to Elisabeth and James, while Isabel adored Dafydd and the Blackmore pride. She was a true Blackmore, but Dickon often wondered if he wouldn’t have been better off if he had been born to a less noble family. Sometimes he had considered running away like Elisabeth had done.
Then he had met Abigail and fallen in love. He had married her and settled, forgetting his escape plans. He had volunteered to follow Isabel to Jinxie, as it was improper for his unmarried sister to go there on her own. Abigail was happy to get out of the Blackmore Palace too, so they had packed with a smile – unlike brooding Isabel.
Dickon liked Jinxie, although all those Genn awed him with their beauty and their many talents. Especially Blondsun, who looked – and was – so young but already a very good magic user, made him feel worthless. Blondsun was four years older than him but looked ten years younger.
Dickon was startled when the Genn magic user went to talk to him.
“Can you keep a secret?” Blondsun asked, dragging him aside with a mysterious smile after a brief introduction.
“Sure,” he answered, puzzled.
“I bring the greetings of your sister Beth.”
“Elisabeth is alive?” he asked, incredulous. “How is she?”
“She’s married, two beautiful daughters and sends her love. If she’ll have a boy, she’ll call him Dickon.”
“I would have called my first daughter Elisabeth.” Dickon beamed. “Where is she, who did she marry?”
“The left-handed warrior twice champion of the Gladius Games,” Blondsun sounded amused. “They live in Xendaria now.”
“May I write to her?”
“Sure. I’ll let her have your letters…”
This short story (and all the other Records) follows CVE2 – The Left-handed Warrior that tells the story of Kurt and Blondsun dealing with Vario X.