Chapter 5

Laey•ti was bored. She lay on her bed and played with the TalkTab Perrcia had given her. Pretty and blue and a light touch to the screen brought up her contact list, two names. Perrcia and Emergon Capü. Of course Laey•ti had tabbed him, and like before he was sweet and talkative and oh so polite! Completely devoted to Perrcia. Laey•ti sighed.

She looked at the door separating her from Lain•ya, there was not a sound coming from the other side. Lain•ya had told Laey•ti, she was tired out from her exhausting day. Laey•ti was not a bit tired, she wished she had her old face back, then maybe Perrcia would have let her come with her and Emergon dancing and maybe Finister would have been there. He had come to the island, he carried her onto the ship and she thought he was so strong, he was giving her riding lessons. He was rather cute and his hands were so gentle, he seemed a little on the shy side, until the day she fell off the tarnick during her riding lesson. He was beside her and grabbed her pulling her on his mount in front of him. They were face to face and he kissed her, she had never been kissed so gently, she felt his tongue touching hers and then his hands were touching her everywhere. She was naked under her gown and could feel his nads swelling. With shaking hands she undid his trousers and guided him inside her. As they nuked on the tarnick Laey•ti started to cry. Finister stopped, alarmed. “MiLady? Am I hurting you?”

“No.” It was the first time Laey•ti hadn’t been forced, she had no idea how good it could feel to be intimate with a man. Laey•ti flushed with the memory of the moment and her mound grew hot and damp. Finister, she whispered his name, of course since she had the face of the princess, her moments of pleasure would be few she thought.

Laey•ti sat up and pulled at her night dress, the thought of a dress designed just to wear while sleeping amused her, she smiled at the thought and walked over to her dressing table to pick up a pair of gloves, like everything she had now they were of the finest quality. She had asked for gloves like Perrcia wore, with the ends left open so her fingers could stick out, of course the request was denied, her gloves had to match Lain•ya’s. She had taken her knife to this pair, of course the ends were ragged, but they would do. As she pulled the gloves on she tossed her TalkTab on the table, it skittered across and landed on the floor in front of the door.

When she leaned over to pick it up she noticed something from under the door, a moving light, someone was sneaking around Lain•ya’s room! Laey•ti threw open the door and called for the lights, the peasant girl in the middle of the room spun to face her. But it wasn’t a peasant girl it was Lain•ya in a brown skirt and top like Laey•ti wore, before she was Laey•ti. She approached Lain•ya with a question in her eyes.

“I’m going out.”

“Out? Without Perrcia? Dressed like this?”

“Yes, don’t tell anyone. If anyone finds out, you didn’t know anything. Go back to your room.”

“How are you going to get out without anyone seeing you? Does your room have a secret passage?”

“Stop asking questions. Look, I’ll be back before dawn, just go back to your room and forget you saw anything.”

Laey•ti retreated to her room, quickly she pulled off her nightdress and pulled out a box from under the wardrobe. She had saved her old clothes, in case of emergency she told herself, never expecting she would actually ever put them on again. Instead of the usual top peasant Ronen girls wore, Laey•ti’s was sleeveless and laced up tightly against her skin, it had several pockets sewn into it. Into these she put the TalkTab, her knife, a bag of gold coins she had stolen since coming to the city. Bad habits died hard, she shrugged as she stuffed her pockets. Looked like she might need money now. Over this top she put a loose fitting top with sleeves and returned to Lain•ya’s room. There was no way she was going to be here at dawn to take the heat if Lain•ya didn’t return, nothing in her short life gave her reason to trust anyone. There was a lump on the bed that looked like Lain•ya, since it was moving, Laey•ti surmised it must be one or both of the maids. When she had asked about the secret passage she was watching Lain•ya’s eyes, that was how she knew where to search on the wall. She was wearing the gloves she had altered so she could run her fingers over its smooth service until she found the edge of the door, and then felt down it till she found the switch. A few minutes later she was carefully making her way down a flight of stairs carved into the inside of the wall. With no light it was slow going, fortunately their rooms were not at the top of the palace. The door at the bottom didn’t have a switch, there was groove in the wall like a handle set in the door, she pulled on it. It didn’t budge. She pulled again, still nothing. Lain•ya had to have gotten out this way, she thought. There must be some trick to it.

She stepped back to think. If only she had a light! Laey•ti pulled the TalkTab out of her pouch, touching the surface turned it on and it glowed softly, she angled it toward the door, it was then she noticed a matching handle a foot away from the first. With a hand in each groove she was able to pull the door open enough to slip out. Now she just had to figure out which way Lain•ya had gone.

The glow from the TalkTab showed a set of footprints leading away from the palace. Just one set, Laey•ti followed them, when the footprints got to the main path and she could no longer tell which prints were Lain•ya’s she stopped to think. She remembered that Finister had told her pailkits could be used for tracking. She knew where she find a pailkit, she headed toward the stables. Along the way she stopped to pick some radiqi leaves. Paillkits loved them. She arrived at the small outside pen were a single pailkit was, “Tresna, Tresna.” Laey•ti called softly, she held out the leaves and shook them so the scent would carry. Tresna came over to Laey•ti, using the leaves Laey•ti coaxed the little animal out of the pen. Perrcia had said she could ride Tresna, the nagging thought that she should perhaps tell Perrcia what was going on she pushed to the back of her head. Perrcia was dancing with her boyfriend, she wouldn’t want to know what was going on especially if Lain•ya was back before dawn, like she promised. Laey•ti led the animal back to Lain•ya’s footprints to get her scent, she hoped the animal would just start tracking and when she climbed on its back it took off at a trot. She had to hang on tight to the pailkit since she hadn’t bothered with any riding equipment, but with the animal’s easy gait it wasn’t much of a problem. She had grabbed a cape with a hood and pulled it up and forward to hide her face, she didn’t think she would be going anywhere there would be a lot of people, she doubted Lain•ya would go anywhere she could be noticed but just in case.

There was a man ahead of her, he appeared to be following the same trail as her. She nudged Tresna closer and a little to the side to see his face, and was surprised to see a familiar face.

“Reesori!” She gasped. She had only seen him that one time, but the similarity between him and Vendall made his face very recognizable. For a moment Laey•ti considered running back to the palace, back to safety, but the thought that Reesori was following Lain•ya stopped her. Her curiosity was greater then her fear, besides, with her TalkTab she could summon help in an instant.

Chapter 6
Chapter 7

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