House of Frost

Chapter 14

By Dabeagle


Ty can't be an angel; they don't have genitals – Nicholas Frost

I have no doubt that the vast majority of people remember their first time, regardless of how it went. I admit I was confused when Ty sat on my lap, adjusting my erection so it was behind him. Then he leaned forward and we resumed kissing. It was new, to have him over me so that I was kissing upward, and yet there was a deliciousness in discovering a new angle to kiss him from. He began to shift on my lap and I thought he was adjusting to thrust against the skin of my stomach, but then he twisted away to pick up a small tube. Popping the lid he squirted some of the contents on his fingers and then reached behind him.

I was holding myself up by my arms, but moved one hand to begin caressing his chest and stomach, slowly working my way down toward his groin. He squirted from the tube again, getting some air and making a decidedly un-sexy noise, but I forgot about that when he wrapped my erection in a cool, slick embrace that grew warmer as he stroked me.

“This usually hurts the first time, so...I hope you can make it so I don't have to worry about that,” he said, breathing heavily.

“What do you mean? What pain?”

He chuckled softly. “Haven't you ever watched porn on your phone?”

I looked at him in confusion. “No?”

“Babe,” he said gently. “You're about to get laid.”

Then he adjusted my erection and guided me toward his entrance.

Some may say their experience was groundbreaking, unforgettable, the best thing they've ever had happen – but I think I can say with confidence that sex was never better for anyone, anywhere. As the tip of my erection began to slide into him, I felt his pain as if it were happening to me. With a thought I eased the clenched muscle and Ty let out a sigh as he sank down onto my lap, my erection completely inside him.

And yet it felt like I was being penetrated as well. I felt a wave of pleasure wash through him, and thus through me, as something deep inside him quivered at being touched. He pushed me so that I was flat on my back, feet on the floor with him straddling my middle. My vision changed and I went from his clear skin to seeing the musculature flex as he moved, sighing and making soft noises. Then it was his organs and I could see myself inside him, could see the knot of nerves that were giving him the waves of pleasure, and as he shifted up a bit I pushed up quickly, driving into that cluster of nerves. My vision shifted rapidly – skin, muscle, organs, skin, muscle, organs – and then light poured from him. Every pore on his skin was emanating soft light, and as each wave hit him it washed through me.

I am convinced it was his soul I saw.

He started to bounce up and down and I began thrusting up, only my toes remaining on the floor. He groaned and said my name with such need. My vision shifted again and narrowed down to his spine. I could see the muscles working, and then saw a tiny, nearly unnoticeable thread curling around his spinal cord. Then my body convulsed and I orgasmed, and I heard myself crying Ty's name – cry as if tears were involved.

His kiss touched my lips, and then he told me to just hold still a bit longer, and he increased his rocking and moving on my erection. I opened my eyes to see him moving, felt his hands grip my thighs as he began bouncing more forcefully and I still felt the pleasure hitting him and rolling through me like a rogue wave. Then a small dot, like the first drop of rain before he arched and called my name, and he let his orgasm loose upon my stomach and chest.

He threw his head back, and I watched his chest heave and felt as if I were foundering with the emotions of feeling two intense orgasms, one from each of us. He leaned forward and brought his lips down to mine, gifting me small kisses as my fingers crossed and recrossed the skin of his back and flanks.

He lifted his head up and held my face in his hands. “I love you.”

I waited a beat before I realized it was okay. “I love you back.”


The morning sun fell across my bed, and for the first time since I arrived, I didn't mind. Breathing gently beside me was my beloved, my bonded. He'd explained to me how he'd wanted to give himself to me the night before and also wanted something of me inside him. I felt the terrible fear he had that I wouldn't survive the day, but we both knew to leave our friends defenseless wasn't a thought we could indulge.

The plan was straightforward. I would port us to the school, and he would go to the gym to warn the friends of ours that would be there to support Brad – Cara for sure, possibly Jay or Tess. Worst case was everyone showing up to support Brad. Ty tried to call and warn them off, but it only emboldened Brad to be there to help us.

That was for later, however. For a few more minutes I watched as the sunlight caressed his cheek and he slept in bliss.

I had not been so fortunate, but then I wasn't as affected by losing a night's sleep as others were. Soon his breathing grew a bit faster and his eyes opened. It's something special to watch someone wake up naturally, to see their eyes as they gain focus on the world around them. There is something that touches the heart when those newly awakened eyes settle on you, and you feel the deep emotions behind them. After a gentle snuggle we dressed and went to eat together.

“Nick,” Ty asked in a thoughtful tone. “Why don't you just break the rules and go get the mantle?”

The corner of my mouth pulled up in amusement. “If I could, I would. But there was an agreement – and magical agreements tend to have serious, sometimes fatal, consequences for breaking them. I've also been told that house mantles are almost sentient, so that they won't go to a person who didn't earn them – but once they are a part of a person, then they might be harvested as sure as the magus can be.”

He sighed. “Too easy, I guess.” Smiling he asked, “So we'll port, you'll throw up, and then we go take care of things?”

“I've only worked with a blessing since birth. I have no idea why your stomach is so much more tolerant than mine,” I grumbled. We fidgeted and delayed, even showering before redressing, but finally it could be delayed no longer, and it was time to leave. Taking his hand, I made the leap to the school, placing us in the cafeteria, which was near the center of the school.

I wiped my mouth and glared at Ty's gentle laugh. Then he stroked my cheek and ordered me to come back to him, and he turned to his task.

“Ty,” I said as he walked away. He paused and looked over his shoulder. “If you can convince them to leave, then do that. If not, keep them there. Just don't bring them here.”

He pressed his lips together for a moment and gave me a single nod before turning back to his task.

Knowing divination would make it easy to find me, I headed deeper into the school, thinking about going to the stairwell and up to the second floor so I could move as far away from the gym as possible while still having an advantage, however small, over the terrain. That was not to be.


I turned, surprised to find Michael and magus Drost – the person who'd given me my test parameters.

“Magus Drost,” I said. “This is a surprise.”

“Is it? I assume your grandmother found you. She's something of a cagey old girl, is she not?” he said quietly, his voice carrying in the empty hallway.

I looked to Michael. “So. You're here to murder me and take the mantle?”

He sneered. “That's a bonus. You killed my parents, now I'm going to get revenge.” He didn't wait for a reply, but thrust his hands forward and a jet of fire lashed down the hallway. I backtracked, feeling the heat singe the tiny hairs on my arms, and I ducked around the corner and took off down the hallway. I still wanted to lead them farther from everyone; I'd hoped to make it to the stairs. I heard the sound of the flames and threw myself to the floor as they passed over me, my back heating up uncomfortably.

I didn't want to cut off my nerves too soon, elsewise muscles or something else damaged might not respond when I needed it to. His flames needed air and thus weren't sustainable indefinitely. As soon as they abated I was up and running to the stairwell, taking them two at a time while checking my skin for burns. I had little time; I heard shoes hitting the stairs. I turned toward the middle of the school, realized my mistake and backtracked, passing the stairwell just as Michael crested the landing.

I ducked into the first classroom I came to, just avoiding a jet of flame. This was not at all how I'd hoped to engage Michael, especially since he had Drost as a backup.

First things first – eliminate Michael as a threat.

I took a deep breath and touched the side of my father's ring, generating a copy of myself. I moved a few feet away from the door and pressed against the wall just as Michael kicked it open. It swung back, hit the wall and bounced toward closing again. Michael held it open with one hand and stood in the doorway.

“You always thought you were so much better'n me,” he said, his voice hoarse. “Now look at you. Stupid. Scared. Trapped. Die.”

He sent a tornado of flame at my copy and I moved quickly for him. It was a dicey plan, and it wasn't good enough. The most likely thing is that he saw me moving in his peripheral vision and turned. His eyes widened and the cone of flame hit me like a hammer. My focus in hand I shut off my nerves and focused on continual repair as my skin charred and my clothes flaked away under his assault. I poured energy from my spark into the focus, willing it to give me enough time to reach Michael.

I knew I didn't have enough. He was burning my body away faster than I could heal, even with the focus. I willed myself to move forward, to make a lunge toward him to try and stop him, but his attack was relentless. Then two things happened. Dimly I heard yelling in the hallway and then Michael's fire went out. My marble amplifier fell to pieces in my hand as I fell forward, my hand grazing his arm as I did. He had been raising his hands, preparing another gout of flame as I pushed what was left of my blessing into him and at that strand wrapped around his spinal cord – and I shredded it.

My focus shattered as Michael paused and looked down at his hands in disbelief. From my vantage point on the floor I kept trying to heal myself, but I was spent, and I knew all he had to do was stomp on my head and I was done. For a few moments, though, I watched in satisfaction as he stared at his hands – his connection to his blessing and the aether cut off.

I heard more shouting and then a strange 'whooshing' sound unlike anything I'd heard before.

“Nick! Nick where – get out of my way!”

Michael was thrown back, landing hard on his behind, but that was of no matter. Ty bent down over me and took my charred hand.

“Nick! Nick, you come back here! Right now! Take my spark! Take it all! Do it now!” he screamed at me, tears on his face.

“For you,” I whispered and reached for his spark...and failed. I just didn't have anything left. He moved his fingers to my face, one slipping behind an ear and his thumb moved up and down on, perhaps, the only place on my body that wasn't burned. His tears hit my face and he whispered to me to come back, not to leave him. Not to dare to leave him.

I think it was the undamaged skin to undamaged skin that made the difference – like touching my charred skin had been a bad electrical contact. I suddenly was drawing on his spark and he cried harder. “Yes! Do it, Babe! Take everything you need!”

My vision of Ty revolved much like it had when he'd given himself to me the night before. I could see the thread around his spine glowing as I tapped his spark. I focused on it for a moment, anything besides the knowledge that Ty's spark wouldn't be enough and that my death would cause him pain. I hoped that thread was something I could use like the imbued item to amplify my blessing. As I channeled into it briefly I saw it was more of a focus, a conduit that –

There was a tremendous bang from the hallway, and I could hear Cara screaming Brad's name. That meant Ty wasn't alone and our friends had come to help – but Drost would make easy work of them. Where was Drost? I was better served leaving any active nerves I had left unable to transmit, but I knew Drost was still out there. I struggled to sit as Ty threw nervous glances between me and the doorway – and Drost appeared.

“You still live? Impressive,” he said with a grunt.

“I can't reach my blessing!” Michael cried out. I'd quite forgotten he was there.

Drost lifted his chin and looked down at Michael. “You've been severed. It's a nice trick for life magi. Makes you useless.” He turned toward me. “Maybe not all is lost. We'll just go to your home and get the mantle on you before you die, and then I can still claim my prize.”

“You can't have him!” Ty said, standing between myself and Drost. I continued to draw on his spark as I stood, no longer needing to touch him to maintain it. I wondered about that briefly – was it the bond? It didn't feel that way. It felt like-

“Oh, I won't touch him – that's how life magi work, you know. Like vampires,” Drost said with a sneer and drew a long blade from his hip. “No, he'll move because if he doesn't, I'll kill you.”

I stood slowly. I must have looked like a zombie with bits of cloth hanging from me, burnt into my skin. I had repaired what I could, but even Ty's spark had its limits – and I was burned far more than my grandmother had been. I leaned on Ty and used that motion to move between him and Drost.

“No, you don't,” he said and began weaving a shield of water to keep me away from him.

“Brad,” Cara cried from the hallway. “No, no! You can't be dead!”

The moment seemed lost, and I felt a sense of hopelessness descend on me. I and everything I cared for were hanging by a thread, and Drost was carrying scissors.

“Good lord! Is everyone all right?” I was shocked to see Mr. Halstead in the doorway, looking at us with a surprised expression. “The ambulance is on the way, as are the police. Does anyone need first aid? Your neck, sir!”

Drost attempted to pivot, but Mr. Halstead had only been delaying things. He placed a hand on Drost's forearm, and Drost cried out in pain – no doubt from Mr. Halstead 'warming his coffee'. I took the step I needed and fell forward, Drost turning and driving his blade through my lung and out of my back. As I fell into him my mind recited the bill that Drost owed: my parents, Ty's mother and perhaps even my aunt and uncle, and Brad.

My instinct was to kill him, to put him into horrible pain and then end him.

But I'm a life magus. I believe in living, not an afterlife.

I locked his extremities and yanked his connection to the aether. He cried out as I did so, crumpling to the floor and I fell sideways, listing with my punctured lung and hearing Ty keen as he moved to support me.

“Get me...Brad,” I said to Ty. “Drag...Drost.”

“The sword,” he gasped.

“Leave it,” I said haltingly. “ Brad.”

Ty helped me to where Brad lay crumpled in his wrestling singlet, while Mr. Halstead pulled Drost by an arm across the stone floor. My muscles, what little of them I had left to call on, screamed in protest as I touched Brad's bicep, assessing him. There was damage to his throat that looked like ice had frozen there, blocking his breathing and damaging the esophagus. His spark was no more than a glimmer of light, a star twinkling its last. I placed one hand on Drost and one on Brad.

“Ty. Touch me,” I whispered.

He knelt and placed his hands on my face, tears running down his.

“You're the key,” I said. I channeled my blessing through him, connecting my spark to that thread around his spine and feeling my blessing amplify. That thread around his spine pulsed as I pushed my blessing through him, then I yanked Drost into the web and channeled into Brad. I drained his lungs, repaired his throat and pumped energy from Drost's spark directly into Brad – like jump starting a battery. I used Ty like a conduit, draining all Drost had into Brad. Brad groaned and slowly sat up as the light went from Drost's eyes.

I was tired, so tired. But with Ty...I had one more play. With a simple amplification focus I'd have had no chance, but Ty...Ty was more than a simple amp focus. He was now a conduit – something that would allow me to use an unreal amount of power for my blessing. I closed my eyes and reached out through Ty with my mind, finding hundreds of sparks in the gym. Like a pinball I bounced from one to the next, adding them to my net, hoping I had the strength and that Ty could manage so much energy.

Then, I drew the energy through Ty and into myself. Pain flooded my brain as nerves came back to life despite my attempts to turn them off. I opened my mouth and started to scream as my muscle, fascia, tendons and skin rebuilt layer upon layer.

And then it stopped. My skin burned as if I'd lain in the sun too long, but the energy flow had stopped.

“Don't you dare die,” my grandmother said tiredly. She knelt down into my vision and shook her head. “Must you always save everyone? Must your heart ever be so noble? Must you always fly too close to the sun?”

I blinked. “Grandmother, are you well?”

She pursed her lips. “I'm peeved. You left me in bed.”

“You were-”

I will decide what I can and cannot do. Is that clear?”

I gave her a slight smile. “Yes, Ma'am.”

“Good. Now let's go before you try to bring anyone else back from the dead.”



Our escape from the school was an organized disaster. My grandmother had barked out quick instructions so that we could leave – taking Drost's corpse with us. I was considerably sore for the next few weeks, but I was well enough to examine my work on Brad. He was very quiet as I touched his arm, exploring the damage Drost had wreaked on him and my repair work. I won't say it was my finest work given much of Drost's energy had gone into revitalizing Brad's own spark rather than a complete healing. Brad's throat was tender due to the death of the lining of his throat, and the quick job I'd done to get him stable. His lungs were better off having been full of the water as it had drained from his throat, but he would recover. I pushed my blessing into him and he shivered as I did. I had finished up the work on his throat, giving it the proper attention it needed.

By the evening my grandmother was delivering our friends home and charming parent's minds so that they were none the wiser. My own recovery took longer, ironically. My body had suffered such catastrophic damage that some areas had been...unstable. I'd feel a sudden burning sensation, as if Michael were melting me, and yet there was no damage. I was frequently exhausted for no apparent reason and my body right down to my bones ached like a rotten tooth. It was all likely psychological, but the pain was very real to me. Ty was my constant companion. We watched every movie he'd ever loved, he told me about places that would be fun to see together. He shared that he felt somewhat guilty for not knowing where his father and brother were, and I understood. I promised we would locate them and ensure they were safe.

“Are you sure? You're not pissed at me?” he asked.

I shook my head. “You feel what you feel, and I can't fault you for having a kind heart.”

When my body stopped feeling like it wasn't my own, I was proud to show Ty every part of his new home. To say the grounds of my family home were enchanted was very true – there were thickets with small creatures running from place to place, the breeze was warm and the sky bright. Idyllic wasn't the only word to describe it, but it probably fit it best. We took walks, and sometimes chased each other, dodging through stands of trees and startling the critters.

The warmth of the sun on my skin was delicious, even more so when Ty's skin was pressed to mine. We had wandered just beyond view of the house, behind a thicket where a tiny beach led into a small pond. We'd been playfully debating as we came upon the beach and I flipped my slides from my feet.

“I think it's completely reasonable,” I said.

“Nick! You can't protest every time I want to put clothes on!”

“I'm fairly certain I can,” I replied, grabbing him by the hips. “Besides, you can't skinny dip with clothes on. The very definition is swimming nude!”

“Won't someone see us?” Ty asked uncertainly.

“Abelard is happily in retirement. My grandmother may see us, but that wouldn't be the first time.” I pushed my shorts down and tossed my shirt aside. “Do you really care?” I turned and flung myself into the water.

“This is crazy! This is crazy,” Ty muttered as he stripped and waded out to meet me. I pulled him to me, dunked him backward and laughed at his outraged squawk. Then I held him tightly and kissed him softly.

“I love you,” I told him.

“Yeah,” he said with a smile. “I can feel it pressing into my stomach.”

I placed my forehead against his. “Have you talked to Jay?”

“He's fine. He got a job, and he's taking Zumibia out to dinner tomorrow. Brad and Tess want to know when we're going to come visit. Al said they miss us.” He pressed a hand flat on my chest. “I know we can visit anytime, but...what now, Nick?”

“What do you mean?” I murmured.

“I mean...we've been here at your family home for weeks. Your grandmother seems fully recovered, you are definitely recovered and hornier than ever,” he said squeezing my shoulder. “But what now?”

“I don't know that I understand,” I said truthfully.

He shrugged and wiped his face of water. “I I graduate high school? Do I go to college? Do you? What do I do for a career? What the heck was Mr. Halstead thinking when he walked in the classroom?” He paused. “Are you just expecting me to spend the rest of my life in your bed?”

“A very pleasing thought,” I said, trailing a finger down his cheek. “If you want to finish high school, then we'll go back together. Getting back into things is only a matter of a good memory charm. If you want to go to college, you can do that. If you want a career, it's yours. But I think you should consider something.”

He wrapped his arms loosely around my neck. “And that is?”

“That between us we can heal a lot of pain in the world. Maybe...we could do that.”

He looked back at me, his eyes moving back and forth as his gaze shifted. “I still can't believe I'm, what? An adept?”

“Not just any adept, but a conduit. The more we work together, the better off people will be. We could do a lot of good.” I nuzzled his neck. “A lot of good.”

“Oh my God. Are those – how did they – are you fucking kidding me? Nicholas, you are in so much trouble!” Ty groaned in frustration.

I waved toward the shore to our friends. “Hi! Water's great. No bathing suits allowed!”

“Are you serious?” Ty hissed.

There was laughter from the sandy shore and we turned to see our friends teasing each other as they discarded clothing to their level of comfort and waded into the pond.

“And what do we tell them?” Ty asked as they closed the distance.

“That they can help us find people in need? Why not make it something everyone can feel good about?”

“Well, we do need to get married. What about a ring? A honeymoon?” he asked, smiling.

“Don't you realize I will give you anything?”

“Next time, I want to use that portal key!” Al exclaimed.

“It was the shit!” Brad said with a grin.

Our friends splashed in close, and we alternated between splashing and floating, trolling each other and just sharing space. As comfort levels increased, some would wade closer to shore and toss a wet garment onto the beach before rejoining us.

“So,” Tess said. “What is the deal with the skinny dipping, and can I bring Topher to visit at some point?”

“Oh. Topher. Nnng,” Jay said, rolling his eyes. “Guess he must be special now.”

“Yeah, he's special,” Zumibia teased. “Way I hear it, he's been saying the 'L' word. A lot.”

“Ugh. You guys are the worst friends ever,” Tess said with a roll of her eyes.

“First, to address the skinny dipping, Tess,” I said. “Ty's not allowed clothes.”

“I am too!” he grumbled as I pulled his back to my chest.

“Secondly, this pond isn't natural. It has properties that ease stress, relax muscles and bring a feeling of calm relaxation. Modern clothes are very much synthetic and clash with the energy of the pond, so being in the pond without clothes lets it do its job better.”

“I do feel pretty chill,” Brad said.

“I I'm in the right skin,” Al said, looking thoughtful. “I frequently go back and forth between feeling one thing or another, but right doesn't feel like it matters. I'm just me, and that's where I need to be.”

“Really?” Cara said, holding onto Brad's neck from behind. “Are you telling me you guys don't come out here to skinny dip and fuck?”

Ty laughed. “Cara!” he said with a snorting laugh. “Brad is a bad influence if you talk like that now!”

“Well, after seeing him changed things. I love him, and I'm not so freaking bashful – about anything.”

“To answer your question,” I said, “Ty has repeatedly molested me in these waters.”

“Oh, please!” Ty groaned. “Says the guy who has a hard on the moment we get in the water!”

“Hey, if I could I'd bone up over you...” Al said with a grin.

“Tess, I thought you were calling him Chris?” I asked, letting Ty escape the teasing.

She shook her head. “He has a religious aunt who likes to tell him his name means something like Christ-like or whatever. So he originally started going by Topher to piss her off, but he says it's also kind of unique; there are a lot of Christophers and Chrises. He likes being a little different.”

“He's dating you. Isn't that enough different for anyone?” Zumibia asked. Then Tess tried to drown her. It took a bit for some type of calm to return as we were all drawn into the fray in one way or another. But eventually I addressed our friends since Tess's question really affected them all.

“I'm going to leave it up to you guys who you want me to meet. You have to understand...not everyone is ready for this. Not everyone will think it's a good idea. I trust you guys to make that decision, but,” I grinned, “I'd prefer if you make sure they look good naked before we invite them to skinny dip.”

“Pig,” Ty said, shoving my shoulder.

I grinned at him and turned my attention back to Tess. “Some people won't be ready, you don't have to look any further than Donna. In some cases it can be dangerous – for them or for us. Anyone we tell can be used as a lever or become a target for some other magus.” I focused on her, giving her a small smile. “If you decide you love him, then he can come here.” I thought for a moment. “And you should bring Sadie. I never got to finish fixing up her arthritis and building up her cartilage.”

Brad laughed. “You fixed the dog?”

I tilted my head. “I fixed you, why not the dog?”

He roared with laughter, so much that Tess took over.

“When Sadie was younger she used to jump the fence or dig under, but ever since she'd hit the senior citizen stage, she just sleeps a lot. Well, I understand now why Sadie was over a few blocks nosing through someone's trash last week.”

Brad floated closer and wiped the tears of laughter from his eyes. He held out a hand and I took it, and he pulled me into a one armed hug that lasted mere moments since we were nearly treading water.

“Whatever it is, bro, I'll back your play,” he said. He didn't bring up Jay or Sadie, or even draining Drost's spark to save his life. It wasn't flowery, but rather a simple statement that he would be there if I called on him.

Perhaps I had just learned the true meaning of a friend.

As the sun slowly worked toward the end of the day, a summer day in the middle of winter, a day that shouldn't be, we climbed from the water and dried off. We had a fire and sat around it as the sunlight disappeared, and we ate and drank and, as befitted an enchanted day, were not bitten by insects.

Eventually our friends did put their clothes back on, and I made a portal home for them, promising to see them shortly and recharging the key they'd used to visit with today.

Once they were gone, I stood side by side with Ty, our arms looped about each other's waist. The warmth rose from the dying fire, and a small breeze stirred past us.

“So...what was Mr. Halstead thinking?” Ty asked, circling back to our conversation before everyone arrived.

“He was thinking I wasn't the evil person he'd assumed I would be. He'd come to the wrestling match, and when he felt the magic being flung about, he came to help – and he did, burning Drost and gaining me the time I needed to get close enough to touch him.” I sighed. “Now he'll help Abelard adjust to being normal again, living in the normal world.”

His fingers moved up and down my hip. “You don't have to have contact anymore. Do you?”

I shook my head. “Sometimes it's better. I'm still figuring it out. The mantle has changed a lot of things for me. While being connected to you requires no thought, other things – other people – are different. I feel linked to our friends, maybe because they were part of the web – more than once. New people...I don't know yet.”

“Do you think we can...what, heal the world?”

I shook my head. “No. It's too big. There are too many people willing to hurt each other. But I think we can make it a better place.”

“What about Michael? He disappeared in all the mess at the school.”

“I don't know,” I said honestly. “And I don't care. He'd been twisted by his father and by Drost. There is nothing I could say to change him, no evidence that would persuade him. Wherever he is, he can't hurt anyone anymore.”

“That's probably not true, he's a complete asshole,” Ty said. “Even if he doesn't have a gift, he got training like you did, right? He could hurt people. Our friends.”

I nodded slowly. “A fair point. We will have to find him,” I said with a small sigh.

The fire died, only embers glowing, light tracing the edges of the charred wood. Ty took my hand and laid me down on the small beach, telling me not to be too loud. We shared ourselves, souls shining for us both to see, showing the world how closely twined together we were. When we join there is no beginning, no end – together we are the House of Frost.

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