All the guests rose their glasses in the air.
"Were all here by choice!" Axel said raising his own glass.
"By choice" everyone around the table repeated.
Xiannon walked into the Kitchen and picked up her jacket, and a lantern and walked
back over to the table.
"Put the coffee on, I'm going for more wood" she told Brix and Alexis.
"We'll take care of it" Brix answered back.
Xiannon walked outside the Mill, and hurried up the hill. At the top of the hill, she
stood beside a large wood pile. Using her hand to shield the lanterns light, Xiannon
signaled the men in the woods, one.. two... three times.
Afterwards, Xiannon turned around to get some wood, but stopped and stared in
"..Arie..?" she whispered.
Arie was shivering from the cold, and was covered in mud. She climbed downhill,
hugging the book close to her. One she got to Xiannon, she looked up as Xiannon put a
hand under her chin and examined her.
Meanwhile, everyone was eating with relish, Brix and Alexis were now standing in the
"And... how did you and the Captain meet?" The Mayors wife asked Shexia.
Axel seemed to get a little uncomfortable about that question but Shexia touched his
hand gently to reassure him.
"Arie's Father used to make the Captain uniforms." Shexia answered the question.
"Ahh.. I see.." the Mayors wife muttered.
"And after he died, I went to work at the shop. A little more than a year ago, the
Captain and I met again." she continued her story.
Axel quickly moved his hand away from Shexia's, and over to his glass.
"Curious, isn't it? I mean, finding each other again?" the Mayors wife asked.
"Oh yes, very very curious" the Doctor's wife (Vexen's wife XD ).
"Please forgive my wife, she hasn't been exposed to the world. She thinks these silly
stories are interesting to others." Axel apologized.
Shexia grew silent, feeling ashamed.
Xiannon walked up to Shexia, and whispered in her ear, "Excuse me Madame. Arie is
"Excuse me" Shexia told Axel, and pushed away from the table.
Everyone stood up from the table, as Xiannon pushed Shexia, who was still in the
wheelchair given by Vexen, out the Dining Room.
After Xiannon and Shexia left the room, everyone turned around, about to get back
into their seats... until the Gardia Civil Captain spoke up.
"Have I ever told you that I was acquainted with your Father, Captain?" he asked
"No. I had no idea." Axel answered back, sitting down.
As Axel sat back down in his seat, everyone else did the same.
"In Morocco, I knew him only briefly, but he left a great impression. An excellent
soldier. The men in his battalion said that when General Vidal died on the
battlefield, he smashed his watch on a rock so that his son would know the exact hour
and minute of his death. So he would know how a brave man dies" the Gardie Civil
Captain told Axel, as everyone's eyes were fixed on Axel now.
"Nonsense. He didn't own a watch." Axel told the Gardia Civil Captain, and continued
Meanwhile, Arie was floating in the warm water of the bath, in the bathroom. Whilst
Shexia sat in her wheelchair in the bathroom.
"What you've done hurts me." she told Arie, looking at her dress which was now
"After your bath you'll go to bed without supper." Shexia scolded Arie.
Arie didn't say anything, instead she just stared into space.
"Are you listening to me?" Shexia asked Arie.
Arie lifted her head and looked at her Mother.
"Sometimes I think you'll never learn to behave. You've disappointed me, Arie. And
your Father, too." she said, turning her wheelchair around, and heading out the
"You mean the Captain?" Arie asked Shexia.
"Him more than me." Shexia replied, and exited the bathroom.
As Shexia left the bathroom, the faintest smile of satisfaction was visible on Arie's
face, since she did hate Axel, and Shexia said that she had upset him.
Just then, Xena flew back into the bathroom, in her insect form.
"I've got the key. Take me to the Labyrinth" Arie whispered to Xena.
With the book and the key in hand, Arie walked down the steps into the center of the
well, Xena leading her the way.
Once she got down into the center of the Well, she examined the engravings on the
Monolith: a Faun, embracing a girl and a baby.
Xena then transformed into her Fairy form, as Lexaeus stepped out from the shadows,
eating a piece of raw meat.
"...Hello.." Arie muttered.
"I got the key out.." she told Lexaeus, holding it out in front of her.
Lexaeus looked at Arie, and then back at the Monolith.
"That's me, and the girl is you." he explained to her.
"And the baby?" she asked him.
Lexaeus stepped a little closer to Arie, and ate another piece of the raw meat.
"So... you retrieved the key. I'm glad." he smiled at Arie.
Xena then flew over to Lexaeus, landing on his shoulder. Lexaeus handed a bit of the
raw meat to Xena, which she ate happily.
"She believed in you from the very beginning. She's so glad you succeeded." Lexaeus
told Arie about Xena.
Xena flew off of Lexaeus' shoulder, and flew around the well quite happily.
"Keep the key. You'll be needing it very soon. And this too. A piece of chalk."
Lexaeus told Arie, handing her the piece of chalk that he brought out of nowhere.
"Two tasks remain, and the moon is almost full. Be patient." Lexaeus told Arie,
caressing her face.
"We'll soon stroll through the seven gardens of your palace" Lexaeus smiled.
"How do I know what you say is true..?" Arie asked him.
"Why would a poor little faun like me lie to you?" he asked Arie, smiling.
And with that, Arie turned around and walked up the stairs, exiting the well, and the
The next morning, Axel opened the warehouse. A large crowd of people were lining up
for rations. The soldiers kept order as Axel supervised the distribution of wheatm
cooking oil, and tobacco.
"Proceed" Axel told Xigbar.
"Have your cards ready for inspection. Let's go. Your name?" Xigbar asked the first
person in the line.
Xiannon, Brix, and Alexis came out of the Granary carrying baskets of bread.
Each piece was contained in a brown bag with a legend printed.
The Guardia Civil Capitan grabbed a piece and started
to recite the printed legend.
"This is our daily bread in Franco's Spain, kept safe in this Mill! The Red's lie
when they say there's hunger in Spain. Because in a united Spain, there's
not a single home without a warm fire or without bread." he shouted out
Arie got out of her bed and sneaked over to the bathroom. She shut the doors behind
her, and sat on the edge of the bath. She opened up the book and looked at the
"Come on... show me, what happens now?" she muttered.
Suddenly, a red stain appeared on the page of the page. Blood. It spread rapidly,
until it covered the whole page. Frightened, Arie shut the book and breathed heavily.
She then heard clattering noises coming from her and Shexia's room.
"Arie..!" her mother cried weakly.
Arie dropped the book on the ground, and walked quickly towards the bathroom doors.
She opened the doors, and to her horror, she saw Shexia standing up out of her bed,
the lower half of her body was completely covered in blood, staining her night dress.
Shexia extended a bloody hand towards Arie.
"Arie... help me..." she uttered, barely even a whisper.
Meanwhile, Axel was looking down at his pocket watch.
"Captain! Captain!" Arie yelled for Axel, as she ran outside.
Axel walked quickly up to Arie and looked down at her.
"Come quickly." she told him. And with that, he ran towards the Mill, Arie following
closely behind him.
The Gardia Civil Captain kept yelling out the legend from the bag of bread.
Later on in the day, Axel and Vexen stood near the front of the entrance of the Mill,
standing underneath a porch from the rain.
"Your wife needs uninterrupted rest. She'll have to be sedated most of the time. The
girl should sleep somewhere else. I'll stay here until the birth." Vexen told Axel.
"Make her well. I don't care what it costs, or what you need. Make her well." Axel
Later on during the afternoon, Arie was moved into a room in he attic. Xiannon, Brix
and Alexis made a bed with a large comforter ad several pillows, for Arie, Alexis and
Brix left the room. Arie put down her bags and sat on the bed, sighing.
"Don't worry. Your Mother will get better soon, you'll see. Having a baby is
complicated." Xiannon told Arie.
"Than I'll never have one" Arie told Xiannon firmly.
Xiannon walked around the bed and sat beside Arie, placing one hand on her head.
"...Your helping the men in the woods, aren't you..?" Arie asked Xiannon.
Xiannon sighed and thought of what to say.
"Have you told anyone..?" she asked Arie.
"No, I haven't" Arie shook her head.
"I don't want anything bad to happen to you.." she told Xiannon truthfully, and then
rested her head against Xiannon's shoulder.
Xiannon hugged Arie reassuringly.
"Nor I to you" she replied.
"Do you know a lullaby?" Arie asked Xiannon.
"Only one... but I don't remember the words." she told Arie.
"I don't care. I still want to hear it.." Arie whispered.
Xiannon started humming the tune of the lullaby that she had told Arie about. Arie
shut her eyes and began to fall asleep.
Later that night, Xiannon was alone in the kitchen, carrying a large canvas bag. She
knelt down to the ground, and lifted a loose tile in the floor. She brought out some
food, a bottle of Orujo, and some papers, and put them into the canvas bag. All of
these items were hidden under the loose tile by herself.
(To be continued in Chapter 6 >:3 )
Last edited: 31 December 2010
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