After the talk with the young sentinel, Vaelarian wasn’t sure if would be safe to return to the spire. He had hoped her youth would have made her be a little more open-minded than some of the older sentinels. She had already poked around enough that if she asked the right questions to the right people, she would have known most of the story anyway. He asked if she had visited the town near the moonwell and she said she had come from there, that the blood elf had escaped from there. She must have been talking about a different town. If she had gone there and talked to the priestess there, she would have known that he was bringing Lali back by force. She would have known he was at the moonwell the night the orcs had died. The young sentinel had not asked the right people yet, but when she did… Vael opted to tell her as much of the truth as he dared. Yes, he let the blood elf escape. Lali went with him. All three of them had killed the orcs. He left out the part about carrying the blood elf to the hills so he could recover. He left out the part where Lali kissed the blood elf. He left out that they had visited recently.
She still did not take it well.
She called him crazy and claimed he had doomed his granddaughter. He tried to explain that making friends with mages wasn’t as bad as having an orc’s axe embedded in your skull, but the young lady was only spurred further into disgust and repulsion at what he had done. She had huffed off into the small settlement around the spire. Certainly to tell everyone how Vaelarian Ashclaw had let a sin’dorei live. Not only live, but he allowed the vile thing to take his granddaughter as well, through a portal, to a city full of mages, to drain her mana and do some demon rituals with her blood.
Maybe he would be lucky. Maybe she hadn’t told anyone. He flicked an ear as he descended the steep hills near the spire. Maybe Avaniel would still want to see him.
He approached the spire carefully. Hiding each time a sentinel passed too near. Who had she told? Did everyone know? Maybe they were looking for him. Would they arrest him? He spotted Avaniel near the tower entrance. He snuck along the side of the clearing to the wall of the tower. He tossed a pebble near her feet. What if she didn’t want to come with him? She turned and looked his direction. She cautiously stepped towards the side of the building. He stepped closer to the back wall and motioned for her to follow. Did she see him? She did. She followed.
He was hoping she would be quiet.
“Vael! How much of it is true?” She wasn’t quiet. She folded her arms and tapped her foot, waiting for an answer.
He frowned. The girl had told. “That depends. What was said?” He definitely wasn’t going to agree that it was true that Lali was being used in some demonic sacrifice.
“You know what was said.”
Women. He swallowed. “I let a blood elf go.”
Avaniel grabbed his ear and yanked it. She held it tight. “You let him go.” She growled, “With Lali.” She released his ear. He rubbed it as she continued, “How could you do such a thing, Vael? Was it just so you could get me alone with you in your camp, without anyone to watch?”
Whoa, he said nothing about that! “No, no, Avaniel,” He watched her hands closely, making sure they stayed away from his ears. “I just want her to be safe.”
“Safe?” She shouted. Certainly, everyone at the spire could hear her. “Safe with a blood elf? Are you out of your mind, Vael? You should have killed him. She’d be a lot safer with the nasty thing dead.”
“He saved my life. He helped me kill orcs. He was the one who told me about the reinforcements and where they were coming in.”
She snorted, “So you’re using her as a bargaining chip to get more information? Don’t you care at all for her well-being? What is wrong with you?”
Others had heard. Two more sentinels appeared around the corner of the tower. He glanced behind himself at the other corner. Three more on the other side. He had no choice. “Avaniel, I’m sorry.” He bolted towards the bushes. Shouts went up. A sharp pain in his buttocks almost stopped him. He kept running. He swung his arm back. An arrow. He was shot in the butt. He headed up the hills towards his camp. They didn’t know the exact location, but they knew the direction. They would know to look for him there. He couldn’t stay long. He reached his small shack and grabbed his bags. He carefully extracted the arrow from his rear. He stuffed a spare shirt down the back of his pants to catch the bleeding then continued going south, descending the hill into Windshear Valley. He stopped at Windshear Hold to write a quick letter before continuing along the path to the Barrens.
Ashenvale is dangerous now. I’ll write with my new location when I get there.