“Joie – lynn,” I heard a man’s voice, cooing, coming from the nursery. It was not Sebastien’s voice, but it was no less familiar to my ears. “What a little miracle you are,” the voice continued.
I turned the corner to see my infant daughter in the arms of the Fallen One. Azazeal. If he had noticed my entrance, he did not give any indication that he had. Instead, he continued to coo at and nuzzle my infant daughter, “Did you know that your Papa, he was once dead,” he said as if he were telling her a grand Faerie tale, “but your Maman, well, she asked her friend for help so that she could bring back your Papa,” he nuzzled her closer now, “You are just like her, Jocelyn – just like your Maman, in that you know exactly what you want. ” he traced a line across her cheek and into the profusion of her dark hair with the back of his forefinger and bent to kiss her.
“Stop.” I said from the doorway. I narrowed my eyes at him, every nerve in my body taut like those of a mother lioness prepared to strike the enemy that threatened her cub. He could not be allowed to place his kiss upon her. “You will not mark her, Azazeal,” I drew myself up to my full height and gathered every bit of Fae glamour around me that I could muster. “Your business is with me.” A sudden memory rushed to the fore of my awareness. Any hack scholar of biblical lore would have known it. It was a long-shot but worth a try. “And even you are not allowed to destroy the innocence of a babe.” I added, hoping that it would get his attention. if not acknowledgement.
Azazeal pulled back and offered me a smile that was not at all pleasant, “Faelyn! How nice of you to join us. I was just telling your lovely little daughter the miraculous story of how she came to be. Would you like to join us?”
“I am here now, am I not?” I said flatly, inching my way along the wall toward them. I fought to keep my demeanour on an even keel but I knew that he could smell my apprehension. We were the same in many ways. How could he not? I resisted the urge to lunge at him to snatch my infant from his grasp, and thankfully intellect won out over deepest motherly instinct.
“Yes, you are,” Azazeal still held Jocelyn, who was looking up at him. She reached out toward him with tiny, innocent fingers. This did not escape his notice and he turned his eyes back to her with an even wider smile. The smile he gave to her was one of both awe and sheer pleasure. Whether it was pleasure with actually being near my daughter, or seeing me made obviously uncomfortable, I was not certain.
“As I was saying, before your Maman so rudely interrupted us,” he purred, he flashed me an irritated glance before turning his attention back to Jocelyn, “she tried for many, many years – centuries in fact – to bring your Papa back from dead. But no matter what she did, she failed. You certainly would not have recognized your Maman as she was then, Joie-lynn. ” He was pointedly using the nickname that Sebastien had bestowed upon our daughter. He glanced at me and continued, ” She was almost always sad and every night at the foot of your Papa’s cold, black, stone sarcophagus she would cry herself to sleep. Ah, Jocelyn! It would have broken your little heart to have seen your Maman that way,weeping like that! It was almost as heart wrenching as the tears of angels, little one.” Azazeal let Jocelyn tug at his shirt collar that she now grasped tightly, crumpling it in her infant hands, letting out what seemed to be a fascinated gurgle.
“Then one day, a friend of hers, whom you’ve only just met, told her that he had the answer to that problem which had eluded her all of that time,” he continued, “If she would but make some small concessions on her part, he would grant her the very thing she sought so desperately.”
“However, her friend never once bothered to name the concessions,” I corrected him softly. I was beside them now, my heart pounding in my chest as I reached out to touch the edge of her blanket.
Sensing this move, Azazeal turned away just in time to cause my fingers to grasp only air. I felt a stab of concern grip my chest and fought the rising urge to scream. But Sebastien must not hear – must not know what was going on in the nursery just down the hall from our boudoir where he continued to sleep peacefully.
“No, that is true,” Azazeal said conceding. He rocked my precious bundle that he held in his arms back and forth there in the dark. Jocelyn was quite fascinated by him and the sound of his voice and she smiled up at him with an infant’s toothless grin. He smiled back down at her then pulled his eyes away from her to gaze at me as he spoke, “but they both knew that when the time was right, he would.” He took a step toward me as if to give the baby to me, but rocked back on his heels, a little, letting me know as I reached to take her, that he was not finished with recounting his story to my daughter.
“And on the night that he did decide to reveal it, your mother was only too glad to render the things that she had promised. For she knew, if she did not, that her refusal would place you, herself, your Papa, your sister, her beloved Island kingdom and all she held dear in mortal danger.” Azazeal gave Jocelyn a nurturing caress over her nose and she let out a cry of delight. He turned his eyes for a moment to gaze back at me, “However, we both know she would never do anything as unwise as that, now don’t we?” His words had been gentle, but the warning within them had been quite clear.
Muse: Fanny Fae / Faelyn
Fandom: Original Character
Word Count: 1040
(Special thanks to both the Writer and Muse of 1st_of_the200 for the ongoing RP and collaboration on this long-term plotline! )