Interlude 24 – A Small Town

Alongside the mountainous region called Ebkai, there existed many towns and villages; some set atop high cliffs and mountain peaks, and others nestled in cozy valleys. One such town of the latter description was called Surton, a lovely town that Amitiel found herself in charge of after she and her beloved had settled down there. 

It was certainly different than anything she had grown accustomed to; both the divine realm of Ilekalaio and the mortal island of Koshima were both quite plentiful when it came to people. When she’d arrived, there’d been barely a hundred people living there, and yet, she still found herself loving her small town. 

As such, as hard as her decision was, she knew it was the right one. 

“Good evening Mister Reacher.”

“Evenin’ Mayor! Gettin’ real quiet round here, huh?”

She nodded to the old trader, smiling as he passed her by. “Yes it is. It’s funny. I didn’t think I’d ever miss seeing orcs trying to catch livestock they spooked.”

“Ha! Yeah, damn shame! For occupyin’ soldiers, those boys and girls were real nice folk.”

“That they were.” Her smile turned a little wistful as she continued on home, taking the deeply familiar route from her office at Town Hall and passing by townsfolk she greeted and businesses she glanced over, currently bereft of the chatty, sometimes overly friendly soldiers that had become a part of their lives for the past month.

Her home had emptied again, and she couldn’t help feeling sad. Even though her own inborn nature made her initially dislike the darklander soldiers, a carry over from an angel’s natural aversion to demons, she’d grown fond of them. Some in particular, who she would happily greet with open arms should she ever see them again.

Entering her home, a cozy one-story house placed just at the edge of Surton’s center, she walked to their room, already knowing where her family would be. And when she opened the door, she was greeted by the sight of her beloved and her child playing, the two laughing with one another over a puzzle.

“Mama!” Nephi noticed her first, their bright yellow eyes going wide and giddy as they immediately reached out towards her, their chubby little hands partially shifting to feathered tendrils in their eagerness. They were a mix of Fin’s natural, dark-tan skin tone, and Amitiel’s almost golden radiance that she normally hid in a Gorokivan tan; the mixed nature of their adorable child further showed with their dark hair, inherited from their mortal parent, and their golden eyes, of which multiple would often appear across their easily shifting skin when they wanted to see what was happening around them.

“Up we go!” Smiling, Fin lifted Nephi up, carrying them towards Ami, their child eagerly giggling as they did. And as soon as Ami took Nephi into her arms, Fin pulled her in close to plant a kiss on her cheek. “I hope everything went well with ‘Dad’.”

“Oh, it did, no need to worry there.”

“Good! Then does that mean your project is getting off the ground?”

“That it does. For better or worse.”

Fin smiled, and Amitiel felt her heart skip a beat. They had the cutest smile. “I know it will be better. You are going to be fantastic.” 

They gave her another kiss, and Nephi squealed, “Ewwwww!”

“Ha! Aw, are you getting too old to see your parents be lovey dovey already? Does that mean no goodnight kisses for Nephi then?”

“Noooo! Yes kisses!”

Fin laughed, and planted a kiss on Nephi’s forehead, earning an utterly adorable giggle. “…I am blessed.”

Fin paused, glancing up at Amitiel, and smiled again. In their brown eyes, she could see so much love and warmth, it nearly made her legs shake. “I think you mean I am. But I am going to miss you while you aren’t here.”

“I’ll miss you too.” She took a breath, then kissed them back, her heart warm and aching all at once.

But what she had to do was important too. Everything she had seen and heard over the course of this latest “war” had confirmed it for her: the world needed a change. The divine could no longer hide away and pretend they were detached from mortality while deciding the fates of nations. And if gods could not see the world for themselves, then it fell to angels to do as they always did. 

They would carry a message of peace and understanding. They would repair what had been broken.

Besides, she liked her idea far better than Father’s “Lightning Champion” plan. Certainly, the idea did bring Fin into her life, but that just made her far less willing to risk them on such a ridiculous concept.

“So, does this mean I’ll get to be mayor while you’re gone?” Fin asked as they grabbed her hand, pulling her out of her thoughts.

“…I don’t think that’s how it works.”

“I dunno, I think I’d look pretty spiffy. I can see it already, Mayor Fin of Surton, leader extraordinaire!”

“Pft, well, if you’re willing to deal with our new queen, go ahead.”

“…Who?”

“Arancoda. It seems she was declared queen of Naloriva.” Once again, Fin proved how cute they were to Ami with how nervous their expression became.

“…I think I’ll be okay not being mayor. Besides, Luna was talking about some kind of leak in the tavern, so I got to check that out.” 

She giggled. “You do that. In the morning though. For now, have you had dinner?”

“That I have, and so has Nephi, so I think we can put them to bed easy.” They likely could, based on how the mention of bed didn’t earn even the slightest protest from their child, who seemed to be already dozing against her chest. “Do you need anything?”

“You, close to me.”

They grinned. “How close~?”

“…W-We shall see.” She cleared her throat, trying to ignore the gold tinge to her cheeks. “Well, shall we?” 

“We shall.” Carrying Nephi to their bed, the two soon retired for the night, keeping each other close for what would probably be the last night for a long time. And yet, she didn’t feel sad, for she knew they would be safe, and she knew she had much to do. 

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