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I Saw It With My Own Eyes

Writers: Suzee, Heather
Date Posted: 17th April 2019

Characters: Benani, Zathris
Description: Zathris tells Benani about Crolarin
Location: Amber Hills Hold
Date: month 10, day 13 of Turn 9
Notes: Mentioned: Karhal, Crolarin

Directly follows "AHH: What's Dead May Never Die"


Benani
Benani
Zathris
Zathris

By the time morning arrived, washing his office in a rich, golden
light, Zathris's eyes felt gritty and dry from the candlemarks he'd
spent sitting behind his desk trying to work out the jitters that the
encounter with Crolarin had left behind.

In the time that he'd spent alone in his office, he had come to the
the conclusion that Benani had a right to know, and he was going to tell
her. They needed no secrets between them. Shoving his fingers through
his hair, and mentally noting that it needed a trim desperately, the
Lord Holder pushed away from his desk and went to see if his wife had
risen yet.

Benani had risen and was seated at their little table having a light
breakfast of tea with a special treat of yogurt and fruit. "Good
morning," she smiled.

Zathris returned her smile, although it did not quite reach his eyes
as he came over and dropped a kiss to the top of her head. "Good
morning. Sleep well?" he asked, pulling out the chair next to her and
taking a seat.

"I did," she smiled. "You came to bed late," she looked puzzled at
him. "And you went out early this morning".

"I did," he confirmed. "There was a little situation last night. A
knock on our door woke me and when I opened it, it was Karhal. There
was an intruder in the Hold."

"Really? Is it something we should be worried about?" When she asked
that question she primarily meant herself and she reached for Camnae
who was never far from her side.

Zathris's eyes flicked to her hand, the nearly involuntary reach for
her canine. "What I am going to tell you, no one else can know. It was
Crolarin."

"Crolarin," she whispered and her hand went to her throat. All color
left her cheeks and she felt faint. "But he's dead, Isn't he?" She
pleaded for the confirmation.

"He is now," Zathris confirmed, reaching out to take Benani's hand and
envelope it in his own. "I watched him die with my own eyes."

She clung to the table and Camnae who whined at her obvious agitation.
"I'm..." her eyes rolled back as she lost all color and she slid
bonelessly toward the floor.

"Benani!" Zathris lunged forward, catching her enough to keep her head
from hitting the floor. Sweeping her into his arms, Zathris carried
her to their bed and laid her down. "Benani," he said again as he
dabbed a rag into the cold water in the wash basin and then dabbed it
over her forehead and face.

Her eyes remained closed for a moment then she swam up from the
darkness that had claimed her moments before. "Zathris?" Camne's
muzzle lay on the foot of the bed where the canine's eyes never left
the Lady's face.

"I'm here," he said, gently stroking the backs of his knuckles down
her cheek. "You fainted," Zathris told her as he hovered over her, a
worried crease in his brow.

"Sorry," she murmured. It was funny, she had no memory of falling or
anything prior to waking up on the bed. "You said he was here but now
he's dead he's really dead?"

"Yes, he's really dead. I saw it with my own eyes, Benani." Zathris
told her, his mind's eye replaying the swift way Karhal had dealt out
justice.

She covered her face with her hands and her shoulders began to heave with sobs.

Zathris wrapped his arms around her, pressing his lips into her hair.
Its all over now, he murmured.

'Yes," she agreed although her breathing hiccuped and shuddered from the
sobs. "It's over, finally over." She turned in his arms a put hers
around him as well. "Thank you. Thank you for telling me Zathris."

"Of course," Zathris murmured, stroking his hand over her back. "You
deserved to know more than anyone."

"It's like a load is off my shoulders that I didn't know I was
carrying," she lifted a hand to wipe her eyes. Then she looked up at
him and the love she felt for him just flowed through her. "Can we
have wine and candles tonight? I need you."

"We can have anything you want, Benani," he said, stroking her hair
away from her face.

Her eyes widened and she smiled. "That new foal?"

A chuckle and grin tugged at the corner of the Lord Holder's mouth.
"For you, anything."

Last updated on the April 26th 2019


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All references to worlds and characters based on Anne McCaffrey's fiction are © Anne McCaffrey 1967, 2013, all rights reserved, and used by permission of the author. The Dragonriders of Pern© is registered U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, by Anne McCaffrey, used here with permission. Use or reproduction without a license is strictly prohibited.