Chapter 32:

Chapter 32: Confession.

The Master and The Slave

Neya opens the door slowly, then she peeks through and sees Nesto laying on the medical bed with bandages covering his chest, hand, and neck. Neya fears were blown away when she saw her servant smiling face while he took a couple of sip from the cup that Caretena currently holds for him.

Caretena notices Neya standing at the doorway, causing her to put down the cup on the end table, then stand up and proceed to walk out of the door.

"I don't want to be rude, but the tea here is horrendous," Nesto jest.

"Are you okay?" Neya ask.

"I'm still alive, even though my whole body feels numb, they said it's temporary so that's another good news," Nesto said.

Neya's feet and hands fidget as she stands in the doorway, she then places a hand on her upper arms as she looks down at the floor. Nesto notices her nervous behavior causing him to feel guilty and depressed.

"Will you forgive me?" Nesto ask.

"I don't know, but what I do know is that things won't be the same as before," Neya said.

"It won't, but it doesn't mean it won't get better," Nesto tries to think on the positive side.

Neya looks away while still un-moving from her position.

"Are you scared of me?" Nesto ask.

She quickly looks back at him causing their gazes to meet with each other.

"No..." She took a pause and look away.

"I'm sorry, I lied... I am scared of you," Neya said.

"I don't blame you. I understand fully where that fear is coming from," Nesto said while a tinge of sadness coated his words.

"How can you kill those people while having those eyes?" Neya asks while her heart tightens up.

"Eyes?" Nesto said.

"Those uncaring eyes, the same one my father had when he beat his own people, and the same one that mother had before she throws me to the wolf. How could you feel nothing while you hurt those people?" Neya asks then she took a step forward.

"During the war, the only way to keep my sanity is to just don't give any thought to it and follow your order. After a few more battles and killings, It becomes something normal to me and I hated it," Nesto answers.

"Normal?—What if your order is to kill me, will you have that same eyes?" Neya ask.

"I don't know how to answer that..." Nesto reply.

She notices that deep in his eye shows that he is contemplating the question that she asks. At that moment Neya knows that the man laying on the bed was not the same as before. Besides the contemplating nature of his eyes, she can feel that Nesto is trying to understand her fear because he cares for her.

He was not the monster like Caretena claimed because she realizes that he is just a man with a broken part in him just like her.

Neya inhale the air into her lung while closing both her eyes when she opened it again, she let out the air in her lungs escaped her mouth. Then she starts walking toward the stool that Caretena sat, and took a seat on it.

"I'm not angry at you anymore. To tell you the truth, I'm angry at myself," Neya said.

"Why are you angry at yourself?" Nesto ask.

"I'm angry because I'm weak. I let you fight for me and get hurt for me," Neya answers.

"It's my duty to protect you because I promised you that," Nesto said.

"Yes, I know that, but I don't want you to get hurt, and I don't want you to fight. I know what I'm asking of you is selfish of me," Neya said.

Nesto let out a gentle smile, "I was right to choose you as my master."

"How about we reach a compromise?" Nesto ask.

"What kind of compromise?" Neya ask.

"I'll protect you with all my might, but when you get strong enough. You will do the same for me, and then I won't have to fight as much as I do right now," Nesto suggests.

"How do I even get strong? I don't know how to fight or cast a spell," Neya mumble.

"I know you will find a way," Nesto said.

"Why do you have so much faith in me?" Neya said while couldn't help herself letting out a smile.

"It's because you are a good kid and a good master," Nesto said.

Neya took his hand and held it tightly while she feels her heart is warming up with gratitude. This man beside her will always believe in her, that faith makes her believe that she can become the girl that this man admires.

The door opens to a group of people familiar to Nesto and Neya. Digia and Lilia had a worried expression on their face as they saw Nesto laying on the bed after they enter the room. Caretena brought a fresh towel while she enters the room and places it on the wooden drawer in the corner of the room.

"What happens?" Digia ask.

Kinnith also enters the room and leans on the wall beside the door. Grok the headmaster enters the room with a serious look as he walks to the end of the bed.

"Before we start asking questions, I have bad news for you both," Grok said.

"What is it?" Nesto ask.

"Neya is expelled from the academy," Grok said.

"What?" Lilia let out while everyone in the room had a confused look on their face except for Kinnith.

"Nesto you broke too many rules, I can't defend you anymore. All the lecturers agreed to expel Neya, so we can keep our neutral status. The student that attacks you was found dead, and he is not just any student. He is the son of the noble family that resides in Weyshers," Grok explains.

"We don't want the Academy to be mix up with Elven politics," Grok said.

"I'm sorry," Grok apologizes.

"You can't throw them out, they have only been here for three days," Digia said.

"Yeah, you will be throwing them to the wolf, if you kick them out," Lilia said.

"Girls... It's fine, I think it's time for me and Nesto to leave," Neya said.

Nesto turns to look at her master confused, but he sees now that she has determination in her expression.

"What? Why?" Lilia ask.

"We-No, I haven't been telling you the whole truth," Neya said while her grip tightens around Nesto hand.

"Stop... We don't care about your past, you are our friends, and we don't want you to leave," Digia said.

"I have to leave, this place has given me so much happiness and make me feel like a kid again, but it also makes me forget who I am. I need to leave, I need to get strong and protect the one I love," Neya said.

"Are you sure about this?" Lilia ask.

"I am," Neya said with determination coating her answers.

"Well you don't have to leave right now, you got until tomorrow to pack your stuff and be ready. I'm sorry again, but there is nothing I can do," Grok said the nodding his head to both of them and walk out of the room.

"If that your answers then at least we can do is pack your stuff," Lilia said to Neya.

"Thank you," Neya said.

"We'll start right now," Lilia walks out of the room while Digia following her from behind, leaving Caretena and Kinnith with Nesto and Neya.

"I'm going to leave too, I'm sorry for what I said at the dance," Caretena apologizes.

"You are right and wrong at the same time. I was weak and Nesto is just a regular human," Neya said.

"Just make sure you took care of him," Caretena said to Neya.

"Nesto, come by for a visit once a while, we all miss you back home," Caretena said to Nesto before leaving the room.

After Caretena leaves the room, Neya looks at the elf leaning on the wall. He looks back at her with a smile on his face, then he leans forward and took a couple of steps toward the bed. Kinnith rests his hand on the bed rail then he ran his fingers through his hair.

"Hmm... I try to defend you back when Grok was discussing with the other lecturer what to do with you," Kinnith said.

"Thank you... But may I ask, why did you do that? We barely know each other," Neya said.

"What I'm going to say may come out of nowhere and sound delusional, but I think I like you," Kinnith said.

"You like me? You mean as a friend?" Neya said while letting out a smile.

Nesto eyes widen when he realizes what is going on, he wishes he can walk away and give them both some privacy, but he can't. So he pretends to be asleep by closing his eyes.

"Well not exactly," Kinnith let out an awkward small laugh as he glances away.

"I think, I fell in love with you," Kinnith said.

Kinnith's confession shock Neya, it was unexpected because she barely spent time with him. Neya's mind was confused and her heart was beating fast, she glances at Nesto; finding him fast asleep. She can feel her cheek getting warm and her mind throbbing.

"How?" Neya ask.

"I actually don't know myself, but I been having feelings for you when we first met, there was something about you that makes my heartthrob. I'm sorry for putting you on the spot, but I think this is probably the only time I can tell you how I feel before you leave," Kinnith said.

"I don't know what to say, I never had... anyone confesses to me before," Neya said.

"It's okay, I don't expect an answer. I just want to tell you how I feel," Kinnith said.

"Why me? I'm not beautiful like other girls, my body is full of scars and I'm a damaged good. How could someone fall in love with me?" Neya said in disbelief.

"Your scars are who you are and it's beautiful. I have met many people that always put on faces, but you are different. Your emotion is raw and the truth, your kindness comes from your understanding of pain and loss. Everything about you is mesmerizing, I just couldn't focus on anything else when I'm near you," Kinnith said.

"I don't know how I feel about you," Neya said.

"Don't worry, you didn't have to answer or replied to my feeling," Kinnith said.

"I'm sorry," Neya apologizes.

"Can you tell me, what are you going to do after leaving the academy," Kinnith said.

"Find a way to become strong, and maybe travel the world. I always wanted to go on adventures," Neya answers.

"Adventure... Sound nice," Kinnith said.

"Kinnith, I feel bad for barely know about you," Neya said.

"There's nothing interesting about me. I'm an orphan who has been living with Grok for the entirety of my life. That's it," Kinnith said.

"That can't be true, you presence ooze mystery, there must be something about you that I would like to know," Neya ask.

"I love to prank Grok in my spare time, you should have seen his face," Kinnith said while letting out a smile.

"Tell me more," Neya said with enthusiasm in her voice.

From that moment on, Kinnith and Neya keep on talking to each other about their life while ignoring the pretend asleep Nesto laying on the bed. Nesto kept on being under the pressure of awkwardness, he could hear the giggle and banter coming from the two of them.

During the chatter between the two of them, Nesto actually fall asleep for real.

Early Morning.

Nesto stretches his arms up in the air after lifting the supplies box into the back of the wagon. He still feels a little bit of soreness around the joint area of his body, it's more of a nuisance than a problem. He looks for his master and found that she is talking to her friends.

"I'm sorry again, to leave like this," Neya said.

"It's okay, but we'll be sad though without our newest club member around," Digia said.

"Just remember to write to us if you not too busy," Lilia said.

"Of course," Neya said.

"I want to give you a hug, but I know you have a problem with touching other people," Digia said.

"It's okay," Neya said.

"Here, take this," Lilia lifts a Claryfair flower in a small pot with both of her hands to Neya.

"For me?" Neya said while taking the potted plant off Lilia's hands.

"Yes, please remember to water it," Lilia said.

"I will," Neya said.

Digia sniffs her nose and wipes the tear off the corner of her eyes. Lilia then pulls her closer causing their shoulders to bump each other. Neya's eyes also start to water as she realizes that she may be won't see them again in a long time.

"Pioneers club!" Neya cheers.

"Pioneers club!!" Both of her friends cheers.

Neya let out a saddened smile, "See you later?"

"See you later," Lilia let out a smile as she replied.

Digia suddenly starts crying and hugs her green hair friend. Neya then starts to walk away from them and head to the wagon. Neya waves her hand at her friends before turning to face Nesto.

"Where is Kinnith?" Nesto ask.

"He said his goodbye last night," Neya answers as she pulls back a lock of hair behind her ears.

"Oouu, late-night secret meeting?" Nesto joked.

"It's not like that," Neya cheek redden and she elbows Nesto stomach causing him to grunt.

"Oh, that still painful," Nesto let out.

"I'm sorry," Neya laugh.

"It's fine, I can shake it off," Nesto said as he waves his hand around.

Neya climbs the back of the wagon while Nesto climbs the front of the wagon. He grabs the reign and wiggles it to signal the horse, so they would start walking while pulling the wagon behind it. Inside the wagon, Neya places the flower pot on the box in front of her and stares at it as she feels the vibration of the wagon.

"You know, it's a tiny world out there, maybe you could meet them again one day," Nesto said aloud.

Neya hugs both her leg as she sits on the carpet-covered floor, "I'm sure, I will."

From the distance, Nesto spots Caretena carriages moving toward the other direction that's lead to Targia. Nesto steers the horse toward the other route that leads to Hardersfield town.

"Miss Neya, are you sure about going to Harderfields?" Nesto ask aloud.

"Yeah, I'm sure," Neya said then after taking a long breath, she stands up and walks to the front of the wagon.

She took a seat next to Nesto and lean her head against his arms. Neya felt saddened to leave her friends but excited for the new journey that they about to embark on.

A journey to find her strength.