Chapter 27:


Curiosity Killed The Cat

Kothur was given a private room in the building for now. He sat on a couch with his hands covering his face. He gripped his hair in anxiety. After telling them about his eye, the men had concluded that they would be taking it in exchange for keeping him safe indefinitely. They believed they could use it better than he could since he wasn’t a Rydes. The surgery was scheduled for later tonight.

He was terrified. Defecting? Surgery? He really fucked up. Why did this have to happen to him anyway? Why did he listen to that bastard, Fehram? If he knew this was going to happen, he would have told him to go to hell. ‘Ending’ be damned.

A knock at the door made him jump. He was worried it was one of the men, but the voice said it was Mylise. He opened the door for her and greeted her, pretending as if nothing was bothering him.

“Can I come in, Kothur? I feel like we should talk.” Her arms were crossed, but her attitude was as cool as ever.

“Of course, Mylise. What’s wrong?” He was going to leave the door open, but she told him to close it. That made his heart race a bit. Not only because it was her, but their last interaction was so awkward as well. He did his best to not think unnecessary thoughts.

“I was really surprised to hear that about you earlier. Did your eye start seeing people’s past after your traumatic event?”

He looked away and nodded. While she looked troubled about what to say next, he asked her a question of his own. “Mylise, I was really glad to see you again. You’ve been missing for so long. Are you in trouble? Is there any way I can help you?”

“You always were too kind to me, Kothur.”

“What do you mean?”

She shook her head. “Sorry, that isn’t what I wanted to talk about. Do you sometimes hear a voice when you use your power?”

Kothur was taken aback. “Yes... How do you know about that?”

Mylise put a hand on her head, her face in discomfort. “I’m not sure. I feel like I know. When you showed me your hand the other day, I felt like you would know. I was just hoping you could tell me more about it.”

He thought about what Fehram told him, a high-stress event and dael exposure. “When did it start for you?” He said that, but honesty, he felt something else tug at the back of his mind. There were too many coincidences about her.

“It’s been twelve years now.”

Ah, there’s no way. That’s how long it’s been since I met that girl. He had to press her about it now. He has wanted to remember everything for so long now. He took a step closer to her. “Mylise, I once said that you look exactly like a girl I met. That was twelve years ago as well. What do you remember about that day?”

“I... I told you before I’ve never seen you. I’m not lying. I couldn’t be the one that met you.”

“That girl also spoke the language of the Rydes’, but not English. How do you know both languages so fluently? You couldn’t have learned it so quickly.”

Mylise gripped her arm with an expression he’s never seen her make before. It looked like she was conflicted. “...there’s no way I could tell you. I left so I wouldn’t have to talk to you about this. If you don’t know anything else, I should leave.”

“Ah, please wait!” He put one hand out as the other reached into his pocket. He decided once and for all to let go of the hope he carried in his pocket. Hoping not to seem too crazy, he presented the single bullet to her and smiled. “You may not know why, but I saved this for you. Please accept it.”

Mylise took it from his hand with apprehension. After she stared at it for a while, she lifted it high and smiled. Suddenly she clutched it to her chest and closed her eyes. “Why would you give me something like this...? If I remember correctly, you were the one that ran away from me.” She looked at him with eyes half blue and half green straight down the middle.

Kothur stepped back at a loss for words. It was the same shade of green that he remembered.

She smirked at his reaction. “Are you not happy to see me after all these years? I’m hurt. Didn’t you come all this way just to find me?” She came closer to him, clutching the ribbon on her shirt. “Or do you only care about Mylise now? It's weak, but I can talk to Mylise and you when you use your power. A small piece of myself in that eye connects you to me. Over time I learned a lot of things. I know you think about her during the day. Do you think about her at night too?” Her ribbon slid off into her hand as she undid her first two blouse buttons to show him what lay beneath. She laughed as Kothur was frozen in place, forced to look.

She pressed herself into him with her hands on his chest. His sharp intake of breath made her smile. “Do you know why females are chosen to be spies, Kothur? Because men become so weak in front of a pretty woman. Their instinct to protect the fairer sex leaves them open. They will trust her easily and let their guard down. Even their reaction time slows.”

With a shove he easily fell backwards onto the floor. He tripped over her leg that he didn’t notice she had put behind him. She climbed on top of him before he could recover and tied his hands to the radiator against the wall with her ribbon. Kothur let out a cry of shock.

She put a finger to her mouth while the other touched his chest. The weight of her body on his torso was hard to ignore. “I wouldn’t be too loud, if I were you. Those men wouldn’t take someone like you doing this to one of their officers too kindly. You know how it is, men not allowed to touch the women at their workplace, especially the ones above them.”

“You’re... an officer here?”

“Did you think Mylise was being held against her will here? You're just as easy to manipulate as you were back then. Mylise was already a Rydes officer before she joined the school as a teacher. It was her job to bring intel and cause disorder where she could. Since you were going to become the next principal, you became a target. Sibelle was as well, since she was going to be that hero’s wife. You were supposed to die as well, you know. Mylise convinced them otherwise.”

Kothur didn’t know what to do with that information. Rather, he didn’t want to know something like that at all. She leaned over and gently removed his eye patch. She looked enamored with the sight of his blind eye, dark with a grey line down the middle.

“It’s beautiful. The Rydes have known about this dael phenomenon for a long time, but it’s so rare. It’s amazing that you and your brother have eyes like this. Your bloodline is blessed! If I conceive a child with you, it might be blessed as well. I could just tell them you forced yourself upon me, and then you would be put to death like you were supposed to. Ah, but I might have to wait until after the operation. I want to do it with my own hands. As revenge for making me have to use that knife against myself back then. It really hurt, you know.”

Kothur looked at her with panic and confusion. “What...? I-I don’t remember.”

“I was out in that forest all night before you found me. I hated the thought of being stuck in the body of a Weit girl forever and tried to use that full moon ritual to get back to my original body. Framing a Weit boy like you for murder would have just been a nice bonus, but it all worked out in the end. I was able to live in my own body again. Maybe it would be best for you to see a piece of this life for yourself. Whose memory would you see with that eye? Mine or Mylise?” She removed one of his gloves and enveloped her soft hand in his.