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Kavada watched covertly as Aryazate's fists unconsciously clenched. A delightful heat began to stir within him as he thought of the erotic way she had looked at him. His emotions swirled. Fear ... lust ... love ... He knew that this was a dangerous combination for him to feel, and he knew that he was in trouble. But this danger seemed to light his insides on fire. "How ... how did you heal me like that?"
"What do you mean? How could I have been so careless as to not even ask about the flesh wound?" Aryazate looked troubled, even though she was obviously trying to hide it with her happy voice.
"It wasn't a flesh wound, Lady Aryazate," he said and paused. "I was on the point of death in fact, I believe I died."
"You're sure? I don't understand," she whispered, looking frightened. "You think I healed you?"
"I'm sure of it, no..." he said, taking her hand as she averted her face. "Are you somehow touched by the gods? How, indeed, did you burn the tax collector and the smithy?" he asked passionately.
Aryazate turned to him, with her brows drawn together. "What madness is this? I don't know what you mean! Are you accusing me of sorcery?" Her color was beginning to rise to her cheeks.
"No! I wouldn't ever ... I mean ... I..."
She jerked her hands out of his and folded them on her lap. "What is happening to me?" she asked, looking out of the window.
"I'm sorry." Kavada spoke sincerely. "That all came out wrong! I just was trying to say that there is something about you, something in your eyes that..." He stopped mid-sentence as she turned, and to his horror, he saw tears making her eyes bright, but not spilling over just yet.
"Eyesthat what?" Aryazate demanded, her voice altered by anger.
"Eyes that ... that draw out a man's soul," he sputtered then wished he could bite his tongue off. "Oh the gods, I'm sorry, I didn't mean to presume..." Her eyes looked very dangerous now and he knew he'd made a serious mistake. They seemed to turn from a bright blue to a striking and frightening violet. He almost thought he could see flames behind those eyes.
"Kavada, are you no better than the others who spread lies about me? Do you dare call me a sorceress?"
"I would never do that!" he cried. "How dare they spread such filth about my Lady!" He knew he didn't lie well, and yet he didn't really think she was evil. She maybe used good magic. He frantically tried to assure his quaking mind. It was good magic ... but was it really? "Please, excuse me, Lady Aryazate! I am a crude clod with no knowledge of etiquette! Please forgive me!"
She stared out of the window. "I don't know what you are talking about. I didn't cure you and I didn't set anything on fire." Her knuckles whitened as she fisted her hands.
They were big hands for a lady. Kavada noticed that the wrist bone was large, although graceful.
She straightened and looked over at him. "What are you looking at? Do I look strange to you? Do you see signs of sorcery?"
In her unguarded moment, her angry voice sounded almost like a man's. Was it possible that this was her normal voice? Kavada's mouth went dry and he looked away. This woman had saved him, yet he was suspicious, just like the rest of them. "No, my lady. I am deeply grateful for all you have done for me." Her eyes took on an intense sadness as her cheeks turned a pallid tint. Ashamed of his thoughts, silence fell between them.