Dimitri caught the lightning and threw it into the water. When it hit the surface, the light cast out of it.
‘What did he say?’ Dimitri didn’t have to turn to know it was Olessia.
His sharp nails dug into the dirt extracting the remaining current from his fingertips. The only place light touched him lately.
‘You disappointed him, look you only made a-‘
‘Mistake? Were you going to say a mistake?’ Dimitri rose and looked at the red-haired girl with gold eyes that cast through him like flames.
‘It was only one,’ she whispered edging forward.
‘Not from me, I thought-‘
‘Did it hurt anyone?’ she said.
‘No but I-‘
Dimitri let the silence hang in the air like his shame that wriggled past his shoulders down his spine. If only he had saved what had mattered but instead he saved what could be replaced. Lightning struck, he galloped and jumped up clasping it in his hand, grasping at all its force, the sparks pinching in the crease of his forearm.
He threw it in the water. The light didn’t stamp out like before, it was stronger, a harder burden to hold. A great splash dipped the water through an odd loop that churned the fish and plants from the depths like an unsettled stomach.
‘You want to hide out here, fine, but the sooner you face this, the sooner you move on from it too. He deserves you to be better,’ said Olessia stamping off into the forest.
Dimitri looked at the lake, a small dune had formed where the lightning had struck. He couldn’t help but think she was right, if he did nothing it would just stare at him in the face.
He called to Desredis who emerged from the water in a matter of seconds.
‘The board of the six lands and waters are to be called at midnight, anyone failing to attend is to be prosecuted,’ commanded Dimitri to the creature.
‘How what?’ Dimitri was considering how to convince the mers to join the cause, they didn’t always see the land as their problem.
‘How are they to be prosecuted?’ Desredis persisted unabashed to ask this of Dimitri who almost commended his nerve.
‘Through a black mark,’ Dimitri said.
‘That’s the one that hurts.’
‘They all hurt but, yes that’s right. The same as you are indicating with your tail, with that movement I would strike into them with lightning through the palm to create a hole that eats them up from the inside out.’
‘Do I need to attend?’
‘No,’ said Dimitri, a curl forming from the corners of his lips as the sea dragon stretched out and flicked his tail in relief.
Desredis’ green fins flattened against the bank of water and he disappeared into the water out of sight. The message would be received by the sea folk in a matter of a few hours and there was still much to be done. Dimitri didn’t expect a war but he didn’t assume peace either. He just didn’t know what to make of Olessia’s reaction to it when she heard or perhaps he did but didn’t want to think how she would scorch him with her words next.
~ Written by Stephanie Kentepozidis