Happy Birthday to Kindra and Kaye! To celebrate, I’m posting a FEF that’s not a cut scene or backstory. This is actual, honest to goodness, novel. And it’s a character that you haven’t met yet: Timin!
Remember yesterday when I said I have never met a person who doesn’t love Timin? I finally found that person. It’s my little sister I’m sure by the end of the novel she’ll love him just as much as the rest of us do, but as of right now she’s Team Gar (let’s face it, I’m Team Gar too).
And now let me introduce you to Timin, who almost everybody loves
The walk back to Gaerlom was silent and slow, and when they returned Timin threw his spear on the ground and glared at his father. “You should have told me what I was.”
Kaye sat down heavily on the cot, the bowl of balm cradled in her hands. She had cried silently the entire way back but her eyes were dry now, and that hurt Timin even more. His actions had made her cry until there was nothing left. He turned and walked out the door again.
The entire way home, all he had been able to think was “I’m a monster”. Even now as he climbed down into the cove and sat in the sand all he could think was that. As the water crashed against the rocks in the darkness he knew he was a monster for causing Kaye’s banishment from the only people who could help her.
He kept seeing her face as Bryant said she could never return to Aleda. It must have been the same face when she found out her High Priestess had betrayed her. But she didn’t fight back – she accepted it with grace.
“Timin?” It was his father.
Timin didn’t turn around. “Why didn’t you tell me?”
Gabe stopped next to him. “Because you are Gaerlom. And Gaerloms hate and fear my people. If I told you before you would have gone looking for them, and that is too dangerous.”
“But I wouldn’t have gone after Kaye.” Timin finally looked up at his father, but Gabe stared out at the ocean. “She wouldn’t be banished-”
“It is safer that way.”
“Not for her! What if someone finds out?”
Gabe’s jaw hardened. “Then we give her time to run away.”
Timin looked back to the waves until his father sat and spoke. “If you have any questions-”
“Was I born with wings?”
“No.” Gabe dusted the sand from his hands. “Thank Awena – you have enough Gaerlom blood to be born Tarrin.”
“Wingless. It is a Faye word.”
Timin didn’t want to ask the next question, but he had to know the answer now. “And the girl that mom lost? Was she… Tarrin?”
Gabe took a deep breath. “No. She was Faye. The female child is almost always born Faye.”
“So she’s alive?”
He nodded. “Alive and well, from what little I hear.” Gabe finally turned to his son. “She looks different from the rest of her tribe as well.”
Timin had to look away. He had a little sister in Aleda somewhere, flying around on wings and never knowing her real mother and father. “Did mom cut off your wings?”
Gabe laughed, but it held no humor. “No. When she found out I was Faye she tried. She mangled one, but I cut them off myself, to be with her.”
Timin looked at him, trying to imagine his father taking a dagger to his own wings. He had never thought his father was tough compared to all the other men in Gaerlom, but perhaps he was more than Timin could ever give him credit for. “Why? The Faye hate us. I could see it. Why would you turn your back on your tribe?”
Gabe was quiet for a long time. “I was married to a Faye woman before your mother. Things were bad – we had a falling out. I was depressed and one day I walked too close to the coast. I saw your mother and she was not scared of me. She did not know what I was, but still. I watched her for moons before I finally got up the nerve to talk to her. She found out what I was the first time we made love and tried to cut my wings off as I slept. I finished it for her.”
He looked at Timin. “I love your mother, and I love you. I would never leave either of you. But the Faye are my tribe, and I could not put them in danger.”
Timin closed his eyes – he couldn’t knowingly put Gaerlom in danger either. “Is there anything else I should know?”
His father sighed. “Do not fall in love with Kaye. She cannot stay here, and the closer you become the harder it will be to let her leave.”
Timin took a deep breath. It was already too late for that.