Sing Me to Sleep – 1

This is the beginning of my second August NaNo project.  It also answers two of the prompts from WriYe’s DreamWidth.  One is a picture prompt and the other is a word prompt: Tissue.

**

Inspirational-Words-of-Wisdom-211It was a beautiful day in Berlyn.  The sun was shining and birds were singing in the trees.  The air was becoming crisp as the season turned from summer to autumn.  Taurys sighed softly as he glanced around the field.  He couldn’t help but smile when he saw his daughter.  There was a time he’d feared that he might never see her again.

She plucked a fluffy blowball out of the grass and blew against it.  In an instant, the tiny white fluffs flew away, carrying the seeds of the dandelion.  Milda giggled and watched the seeds, turning in place to follow them as they swirled around her, carried by the wind.  As soon as she spotted Taurys, a sunny smile touched her features.  “Papa,” Milda said, bouncing forward.  She threw her arms around Taurys’s waist.

Chuckling, Taurys wrapped his arms around her.  “Hello, Daughter,” he said.  He blinked when she pulled away.  “Milda?” he said, blinking.

“That hurt,” she said, tears coming to her eyes.  She rubbed at her arm and shook her head.  “Why did you hurt me?”

Scowling, Taurys crouched down and looked at her arm.  There was a mark, the shape of his hand there.  He gasped and looked down at his hands.  He was so much stronger now, he had trouble controlling it.  “I’m sorry, Milda,” he said, reaching out to her.

Milda pulled away from him.  “No,” she said, her voice firm.  “You’re not my papa.  I don’t know what you are, but Papa would never hurt me.”

Taurys felt as though something in his chest snapped.  He stood, watching in sadness as Milda ran across the field, away from him.  Then, his gaze was drawn upward, beyond her.  Petrov was smiling, holding his arms out to Milda.  “No,” Taurys cried, “get away from her!”

“Taurys,” a voice called.  Daina’s voice!

Gasping, Taurys turned and the scene faded.  He was standing in the middle of his dimly lit bedroom.  Daina was sitting on the bed, frowning at him.  “Daina?” he said, blinking.  He looked around.  “I – I was in a field,” he said, trying to make sense of what was going on.

“It was a dream, Taurys,” Daina said, her tone gentle.  She held up the blankets and smiled.  “Come back to bed, Taurys.  It’s all right.”

Taurys shivered and nodded.  “I just… I’ll check on Milda,” he said.  He stepped over to Daina and kissed her mouth lightly.  “I’ll be right back.”

Daina nodded and then leaned back against the pillows.  “When you get back, you’ll tell me what you were dreaming?” she said.

“I will,” Taurys assured her.  Then, he pulled on his robe and padded out of the room.  Milda’s bedroom was just down the corridor from theirs.  He eased the door opened and sighed.  Milda was curled up under her blankets, looking as sweet and peaceful as he remembered.

He tugged the door closed, being careful not to pull too hard.  Then, he returned to the room he shared with Daina.  He slipped under the blankets and stretched out beside her.  As she curled against him, he wrapped an arm around her shoulder.  “I can crush rocks with these hands,” he whispered.

“Is that what you were dreaming about?” Daina asked.

Taurys shook his head.  “I dreamed that… I hugged Milda and accidentally hurt her,” he said.  Tears welled in his eyes, because he knew that was possible.  He still wasn’t quite used to how strong he was now.  “She… ran away from me – to Petrov.”  His heart clenched at the memory and he released a shuddering breath.

Daina kissed him lightly.  “That would never happen, Taurys,” she said, her voice soft.  “If our Milda ever ran from you, she’d run to me.  You know that.”

Sniffling, Taurys nodded.  “I don’t want her to run from me,” he breathed.  “I don’t want to hurt her, ever – not even emotionally.”

“Sweet husband,” Daina said, sitting up to look into his eyes.  She kissed his eyelids and then nodded.  “That’s what makes me so certain it’s you in there.”  She patted his cheek.  “Such the worrier.”

She rolled away from him then and tugged a tissue free of the box on the nightstand.  Handing it to him, she said, “Dry your eyes, Taurys.  Then, drink some water to replace the fluids you’re losing.”

Taurys took the tissues and did as she’d said.  Then, he reached over to the nightstand on his side and lifted the water glass to his lips.  He took a sip and set the glass back.  “I should talk to Gilbert about… my strength.  Yeah?”

“You should practice the exercises he gave you until they become second nature,” Daina said, shaking her head.  She frowned and brushed tears from his eyes.  “I’ll have a word with him about this,” she said.  “I think he’s gone a bit overboard with how real things are.  You never used to cry so easily and you’ve never sleepwalked before.”

Taurys chuckled and wiped away the last of his tears.  “I’m just having trouble adjusting,” he said, shaking his head.  “Everything is about learning control.  It’s like… when someone comes out of a coma.  They have to learn how to control their emotions, yeah?”

Daina looked thoughtful for a moment.  Then, she nodded.  “I will have a word with him about the sleepwalking, though,” she said, her tone one of determination.  Then, she kissed his cheek again and said, “Now, try to go back to sleep.”

“Yes, dear,” Taurys said, as he lay back down.  He curled on his side, gently drawing Daina close.  As she snuggled into his embrace, he closed his eyes.  He was determined to learn better control, now.  It wasn’t just about what Gilbert wanted or being embarrassed about destroying the stones.  Now, it was about his family.

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