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One Night (standard:fantasy, 4291 words)
Author: MelodyAdded: Feb 15 2001Views/Reads: 3745/2136Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)
A bard muses over his past and a lost love, as well as the new bittersweet happiness he has found. I would greatly appreciate any feedback and voter response. Thank you for reading.

The bard leaned back in his chair and carefully opened the message that
had arrived earlier that day from Silverymoon. As he unfolded the 
delicate paper a thin sigh escaped his lips. He knew what it was before 
he even read it. It was another request for a performance before the 
court of Silverymoon. With a hand written message from the Lady 
Alustriel herself. His steely gray eyes briefly scanned the letter 
before with a wry smile; he held it over the flickering flame of the 
lone candle on his desk. He watched almost mesmerized as the flames 
hungrily licked the paper quickly devouring it. He turned his gaze out 
the window and to the star filled night sky. "Ah Vilanova," he spoke 
softly. "I can not, not without you." He wondered if his dead wife 
could hear him at such times. Often he felt as if she were standing 
beside him, or perhaps watching him. It was a comfort, yet even after 
all these years the memories still tore at his heart. 

Drandon shook his head to clear the cobwebs of memory and stood slowly
stretching. He walked noiselessly out of the room and down the hall to 
his daughter's bedroom. He gently opened the door not wishing to 
disturb the child at such a late hour. As he peered into the darkness 
of the room he could see that she was not in her bed. Where would a 
toddler be at such a time? With a smile he closed the door and walked 
the short distance down the hallway to another room. He softly opened 
the door and was not surprised to find little Ioni lying snuggled up to 
her mother. 

Treeana's long curly black hair lay strewn across the pillows and
mingled with Ioni's own jet-black tresses. Mother and child lay 
sleeping peacefully, the moonlight filtering in through the window 
bathing them in its soft glow. Drandon smiled warmly and stood in the 
doorway for a few moments gazing at the inviting scene before his eyes. 
With a heavy sigh he quietly turned and shutting the door behind him 
slipped on down the hall. "I would only keep them awake with my 
restlessness" he thought.  Drandon was often troubled by sleepless 
nights. A curse he had obtained many years ago. One does not go into 
the abyss and come out unchanged. Again the bard shook his head as if 
that would actually make the dark memories dissipate. 

He walked until he reached a small plain door at the end of the hall.
Opening it he walked through and began climbing the narrow stairway 
inside. At last he reached the top of the steps and opened another door 
that led him outside. A starry night sky was his greeting and the full 
moon smiled down upon him. He was standing upon the observatory of 
this, his brother's stronghold. This was the highest point of Windwall 
Keep. He could see across the vast expanse of fields below and almost 
to Silverymoon from this height. He closed his eyes as he drew his 
cloak about himself and leaned against the cold stone of the wall. 

His thoughts drifted back to Ioni and Treeana. What would his life be
like without them? He smiled a little as he thought of Treeana. Treeana 
his...his what? What do you call a woman you share a child and a life 
with but have taken no vows to? He turned his gray eyes up to the sky 
as if the heavens could give him an answer. 

Drandon had known Treeana for years before circumstances had forced them
into a partnership of sorts. She had professed to despise him and had 
on more than one occasion even tried to kill him. He grinned wryly as 
he thought of that. Her sister marrying his brother had changed 
everything. She was coolly polite when the occasion called for it, but 
when a man had stepped back into his life, becoming a threat to 
Jadaria, it was Treeana who had come to Drandon and proposed the notion 
that the two of them see what information they could find and thwart 

He had at first been skeptical of the mercenary with a less than clean
past. He knew of her years with the Zhentarim and of the several 
mercenary bands she had led.  He knew that she was wanted in Luskan and 
Cormyr and that she could not even enter the strange land of Zakara. In 
Waterdeep her name drew black looks. The gods only knew what else she 
had done that he could not uncover. But he had seen no other choice 
really and he knew that no matter what cold facade she put forth she 
loved her sister. So reluctantly he began to work with her and he was 
surprised at what the two of them together accomplished. 

In the middle of their "work" he was captured on the island nation of
Niannon where he was wanted for false crimes against the crown from 

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