The past few weeks had been the slowest of Tayes life, Forrest had missed their lunch date and had failed to make any sort of contact since. A week after he was supposed to call around, Taye had made the long ride up to the barracks to try and find him only to be told he hadn’t returned since their last meeting and no-one knew where he’d gone.
As the weeks past she’d tried not to worry but the more time that went by the more she felt that perhaps he wasn’t coming home to her, her mind filled with regrets she often pondered what could have been.
Neo her son had grown into a fine boy she thought breaking her first smile since Forrest’s disappearance. As she watched Lysander chasing the little boy around the lake desperately trying to stop him falling in, he did love the fish she chuckled. It would have been nice to have given him a father.
Moving away from the window she picked up the bowl of soup on the counter and headed towards her mothers bedroom. Knocking lightly she headed into the dim room, where her mother lay looking pale and drawn. Settling on the bed she smiled weakly ” I bought you some soup” she offered.
“Thank you love” Clara replied struggling to sit in the bed, Taye placed the tray on her knee and then turned to leave, “Sit with me a while” Taye half-heartedly smiled and sat nervously on the bed, she loved her mother dearly but she was in no mood for one of her mothers pep talks. ” Still no word?” Clara asked.
Taye shook her head ” No” she replied sadly “no-one seems to know what happened to him, theres been trouble in the mountains and an attack on the barracks but as far as anyone knows he wasn’t in either of those places”.
Clara nodded ” don’t worry love he’ll turn up soon enough”
Taye stood, “Yes ” she replied weakly ” im sure he will” she replied trying to make her escape.
“Taye love” Clara called ” don’t blame yourself, if its not your fault”
“We don’t know that” Taye protested ” he might have just realised what he was doing, jumped on the first boat and fled, maybe he didn’t want to marry me after all??”
“Shush now, that’s crazy talk” Clara scolded.
“You don’t know that” taye replied.
“Yes love I do, I saw the way that young man looked at you, there was love in his eye’s don’t you doubt that for a second”.
Taye sighed “Mother!!!….your so infuriating, things aren’t so simple, we don’t know what happened to him, …… forget it….. you’ll never understand” she replied storming from the room.
Reaching the living area Taye looked out the window, to see a large military coatch pulling up outside the house, she watched awestruck as a smart looking soilder in an officers uniform climb out and walk slowly towards the door.
she burst into tears, this was it they’d found him and here they where to tell her Forrest was not coming home to her. Sliding down the walk she landed in a crumpled heap sobbing. A few minutes passed and the solider stood outside knocking, he could see her she knew but still she couldn’t bring herself to answer the door.
Eventually Lysander came around the side of the house from the pond holding Neo’s hand. Coming to investigate the noise, she looked up to see them talking for a moment Lysander opened the door revealing Taye in a crumpled heap on the floor.
“What you doing?” he asked.
Taye wiped her eye’s “nothing” she replied feeling rather foolish in front of her brother, she managed small smile “Sorry” she apologised to the solider ” can I help you?” she asked, with a lump in her throat the size of an apple.
The solider smiled “Good day, are you Taye?” Taye nodded weakly “nice to meet you” he replied holding out his hand to shook her warmly ” Im Orion Carpenter, im Forrest’s commanding officer”.
Taye nodded numbly ” do you know what happened to him” she asked fearing the reply.
The solider smiled ” Yes I do, Im afraid he missed your dinner appointment, that was my fault Im sorry, can I steal you away, Prince Thomas wants to see you?”
“What about Forrest?” she begged, “Where is he??”
Orion smiled “Come, ill explain in the coach”
Taye looked panicked, but Lysander waved her away and she followed Orion’s guiding arm towards the coach ” why does prince Thomas what to see me?” she asked.
“Come I’ll explain”
Taye followed the solider to the coach, and watched as he opened the door being guided inside she peered nervously behind her where Lysander and Neo waved frantically, not even noticing who else was inside the coach until she practically sat on top of him. “Hey”
Taye span, finding Forrest lying down on the main seat, inside the coach, she burst into tears, throwing herself onto of him she clung tightly to the man she feared was dead. “I thought I’d lost you” she sobbed.
“Wished, more like” he said with a grin.
“Don’t joke” she sobbed ” I really thought you where gone”.
Orion climbed into the coach behind them ” He almost was” Orion replied “I dragged him upto the mountains, chasin demons. One almost go him too… right in the stomach. Taye suddenly withdrew herself concerned she might be hurting him
“It was touch an go for a while” Orion smiled “but the doc say’s he’ll live he’s over the worst….. I was just bringing him back the barrack but he insisted on visiting you first”.
“Thank you” she sobbed as the coach started moving.