I love these two so much I could eat them up! Hugo and Amadahy are the grandparents of Charlotte Locklear. Their story tells of the birth of weaver magic in the United States, as well as the building of the castle, The Wayfarer Inn, that plays such a huge role in my books. If you need a refresher on their story (I did), here are the links you’ll need: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3
Amadahy waited until his breathing slowed and his hand fell from her shoulder. It had encouraged her, this touch that had remained. His hand made her feel at home and safe. It did not make her feel loved, but she thought it was too soon for the man. His eyes still told her that he would care for her merely out of duty. She didn’t mind it. This man was kind and good. She had seen far worse in other other loveless marriages.
She slowly slipped out from the layers of covers and tiptoed to the front door. It was funny, this extra layer of blankets between them. He always tucked her in the blanket of her people, tucked himself into the blanket of his people, and then covered them both with the blanket of marriage. Her blanket was made with the hide of a mountain lion, one that she had killed. She would always bear the marks of the animal, but she was proud of her bravery and the trip that had made her a woman and an adult warrior among her people. His blanket was straight lines and dark colors and neat, steady stitches. It did not look like it would be warm, but she had crawled under it while he was gone one day, and she was surprised by the soft, warm weight of it. The blanket that covered them had faded colors, but she could still see the large tree. She liked it best of all three blankets. It had belonged to somebody much older than her husband, and it smelled of flowers of the field.
Amadahy pressed her hand against the carved door and waited for the magic to unlock the entrance. She thought it odd, the sealing of a place with magic, but she also found it comforting. Inside this place, they were safe from animals and enemies. The wood of the door smelled good, and welcomed her each time she approached. And the animals on the door were curious. She ran her fingers over them sometimes. A deer with a single horn. A tiny man and woman. A person with the tail of a fish. The story tellers of her people told tales of odd creatures. His people must have their own.
The wind rushed through the branches and tickled her shoulders. She wished she had brought a cover, but she would not go back. If he noticed her absence, then he would think that she was relieving herself. But if she went back and left again, he might try to speak to her. She was tired and aching, and the confusion between them was a heavier burden than usual. The night was cold, but she welcomed the bite of it.
Amadahy wished for the moon light as she walked to the little stream. She loved the sound of the water even more than the clean taste. She sat down near the bank, tucked her feet underneath, and pressed her hands close together. She laid her healing hand on top. She had had no idea what the man had said to her, though she had heard the concern in his voice. She knew that he had healed her, and that his healing was faster and better than hers. She frowned harder at the rock. This man who was her mate confused her.
His magic was a warm, brown magic that was steady and strong. Her magic was strong and true, but sometimes it did unexpected things, or thinned out, or flashed like a fire. She wondered how old this man was, and how he had learned. The translator had not told her parents much, but it had been enough for them to agree to this arrangement. A tear slipped down her face. She gathered it with her hand and placed it into the stream where it belonged. It would do her no good to remember the bad that had happened, or the fact that no man would touch her afterwards.
This man and this marriage was what she needed. She thought of the piles of books the man poured over. More than once she had seen him working with his magic after looking at them. She wanted to know what secrets these books held. She needed her own magic to be as steady as his. She needed the speaking between them to be as clear as this stream.
Her eyes focused on the rush of water against a rock. He was like a rock, and she was like the water. She closed her eyes and thought of the man and the words that came from his mouth. She thought of her own words, and the shelter he had built for them. Her magic flowed all around her, swirling and leaping and dancing.
Amadahy rushed home and jumped onto her side of the bed.
“Ama?” Hugo rose slowly and rubbed his eyes.
She let her magic flow from her. He sat up, his eyes wide and his shoulders squared. Her magic swirled around the both of them.
“I made this.” She started, and then all the words she wanted to say spilled out between them. She couldn’t stop the waterfall of words that rushed and roared at first, but eventually she saw his frown and way his eyebrows changed across his head.
“Amadahy.” He spoke, but the words made no sense. Her magic pulled back from him and went back into her body.
She couldn’t help the tears that came, and she only cried harder when he continued to speak soothing words she didn’t know. She pushed him back, threw herself back under her blanket, and curled up into her sadness.
The room was quiet for a long moment. Then he was there, pulling her closer and placing the blanket back over both of them. He put his arm around her and began to sing. She didn’t know what the song was or any of the songs that came after. She only knew the rise and fall of his voice and the comforting weight of his arm. The tears ran their course, and she fell asleep to the sound and feel of him.
P.S. I planned to only have one Hugo and Amadahy this month, but then I wanted to know what happened next. Tune in on Friday for a bit from Hugo!