“You see, my dear,” The tall woman said as she sashayed towards Azoloth, her hips swinging back and forth. She wore a silvery dress that seemed nearly translucent as if it were made of spider silk. The dress was low cut and clung to her slender figure as she moved. 

“Leave him be,” Y’smir cut in stepping up next to the woman.

The woman frowned at Y’smir, “While we may be thankful for our entry into this world, do not overstep your bounds, little druid.” Turning her attention back towards Azoloth, she continued. “We have a quandary on our hands. We are grateful to have our doorway back into this realm opened once more, from the stench of undeath and more vile things it seems we have work ahead of us. Yet there is the issue of your… friend,” she said the last word, distaste clearly evident in her voice.

Azoloth held up a hand to stop Y’smir from continuing as he listened to the woman. Then his eyes flicked to Trinsic. “I have a few questions if you don’t mind M’lady. Who are you? What is all of this? What is wrong with Trinsic?”

The woman stopped feet from Azoloth, seeming unwilling to approach closer. She let out a low, luxurious laugh at his question as if it were absurd. “My dear boy, I am Titania, queen of the fae of the Court of Stars, and this is the Wild Hunt. The Wild Hunt was once the force of law in this land during the age of dreams. We hunted oath breaks, kind slayers, and their like. When the Druids turned their backs on nature we were locked out, yet the way has been opened once more. Once more we shall ride the through the lands cleansing the corruption. Your… friend…” she said once more with disdain still clear in her voice. “He reeks of darkness, we should purify him. The Druidess who opened our way and restored the natural order to the grove has asked that we spare his life. We agreed to wait until you joined us. Moonkissed as you are, my powers could not bring you here.”

“Purify him?” Azoloth asked, not quite following what was going on. He looked down to Crimson who sat wagging his tail watching the woman. It was strange for him to be so passive when a stranger was that close. Looking back to the woman he spoke, “what do you mean by purify him?”

“The way we purify all who transgress against the natural world, with death.” She said moving closer to Azoloth. “Yet his fate is not fully ours to decide, he travels with you Moonkissed, and with a druid of the old path. There are ways these things are done.”

“Do not trust her, Azoloth,” Y’smir said, her voice harsher than usual. “If she be who she claims then she is a thing part of this world yet not of it. The ancient tales spoke to the fair and said they were not to be relied upon. They follow ancient rules that Humans rarely comprehend.”

Titania waved the Druidess’s objections away. “We follow the way of nature, bringing all into balance. Most humans cannot understand that, but you Moonkissed. For you to have been chosen you may understand.”

“Why do you keep calling me Moonkissed? Who was I chosen by?” Shaking his head to clear it as he spoke, Azoloth took a step back. A scent surrounded the woman, one of moist earth, flowers, and herbs. The scent made his head fuzzy and made it hard for him to focus on what she said.

“That is not for me to reveal to you, Moonkissed. There is but one thing for you to do. You must stand as arbiter. Decide if this man lives or dies. The darkness coiled within his soul is not of this world, he is a danger to all who love nature.”

“Y’smir what do you make of this?” He asked her. He looked over at Trinsic, who hung limply in the chains.

“I do nay know. If she be who she claims to be, then there could be truth in her words, but who knows with the fae.

Deciding, Azoloth turned once more to Titania, “I cannot allow you to harm him. I know Trinsic is a rogue and does not hold as closely to the vows of the Knighthood as do I, yet he is like a brother to me. We have sworn oaths to protect each other with our lives if need be.”

“So be it,” Titania said, her voice ringing like a bell in the still air of the grove. “The Moonkissed and the Druidess of the old ways have spoken, they would see our prey freed my brethren, see to it.” Then turning to Azoloth she leaned in, her breath caressing like a soft kiss against his skin as she whispered. “Rarely does evil come from acts of love, yet when they have in the past they have shaken the foundations of the world. Watch him closely Azoloth, let him not lead you into darkness as you have found the light.”

Then a flurry of movement, like the beating of thousands of wings surrounded them. Azoloth closed his eyes, stepping back, and he could feel the wind flowing about him. When he opened his eyes, the grove was filled with the sickly green light of the day. The strange darkness cloaking it having left with the fae, Trinisc had fallen to the ground and was slowly pushing himself up to his feet. 

Azoloth would have went to Trinsic to see to him, but in that moment Y’smir touched his shoulder. She stood a mere 5’4” to his 6 feet, “I am glad you are alright, you had me worried. First you were stupid enough to take on that bear single handedly, then when the fae came to us your necklace glowed like a falling star and they would not approach you. She refused to say anything to me of it and proceeded to bring us here. She seemed confident you would be along soon. Crimson refused to leave your side, when she tried to bring him with her magic he growled and nearly attacked her.” At that Y’smir gave a soft laugh. “I don’t think she expected that, She said he could stay with you then and brought us here.”

Before Azoloth could respond, a groggy voice interrupted them. “Could you two love birds cut it out and tell me what the fuck is going on?”

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