“We cross over the Fire only when we come to it. Not before,” Migaru said, repeating one of her father’s favorite sayings. “Come on. You can have dinner with me tonight.”
“Eat in the mountain? With lord Inferno? No one but a lord or lady can do that!”
“I’ve been doing it for years, and I’m still alive,” she told him dryly. “You’ll be fine. I’ll race you there.”
Migaru took off across the plains that lay at the base of the Fire Mountain range with Rifoe right behind her. Their laughter was loud and their race made several passing Fires jump back to avoid being crashed into.
Unseen by both, a hawk swooped down to the ground, picking up its meal for the night before returning to the forest. It landed on the outstretched arm of a man in green. “I agree,” he told it. “It is time.”
“My thanks to you, lord Inferno. Dinner was delicious,” Rifoe told the leader of Fire.
“It was a pleasure to have you as well, Fireling. Besides, how could I deny a request on my daughter’s Day of Power?” He looked at Migaru, who was busy staring at her plate as though it was the most interesting thing in the world.
A knock on the door interrupted any further conversation as Fumilt poked his dark haired head into the room. “Sorry to disturb you, milord, but there is a visitor to see you.”
“Can’t it wait for a bit? At least until I finish dessert?”
Fumilt shook his head. “I’m afraid not. He says it’s important.”
“Very well. I’ll meet him in the main hall.” Fumilt nodded and closed the door on the three. Inferno looked at the table still full of food and sighed. “I’m sorry to have to do this to you. If you would excuse me though.” He rose and closed the door behind him as he left.
“I suppose I had better get going then too,” Rifoe began slowly.
“Right. Yeah…Yeah,” Migaru said quickly. She rose with him and walked over to the door leading to the mountain’s entrance. “Thanks for coming?”
He grinned. “Of course! Like your dad said, how can I refuse a request on your Day of Power?” He easily dodged her mock hit and smiled again. “’sides, it was fun. And it meant I didn’t need to compete with the rest of the family for food at the table.”
Rifoe’s huge family was forever a source of amusement and frustration to him. While it was great to have so many people, it all the meals were a huge to do and generally a contest to see who could get at the food first. “Good thing I had you come over then, huh?”
“You know it.” Then, before she could move away, he gave her a quick hug before darting out the door. “Bye Mig!” he yelled to her.
“See you Rif!” Migaru called back to him. She watched out of the door until he was out of sight. Turning, she went back inside and began to return to her room when Fumilt stopped her.
“Lady Ficis? Lord Inferno requests your presence in the main hall.” Fumilt held out his hand. “I was told to bring you there.”