Ocean Of Three

By: Amaris Maverick

Chapter 3,

Snow Queen Lodge & Resort

Dare tilted his head as he heard Amaranda's heartbeat pick up. He stood up and set his current book down. He made his way from the couch to the stairs, up above he heard Amaranda make noise in her sleep. She had napped almost immediatly after they had settled in. It was nearly four in the evening and she was dreaming. But he pushed the door to their bedroom open and she was tangled in the soft cream sheets. Her chest heaving as she clutched the bed, her claws had sank into the matress. He moved over to her and settled on the bed, he smoothed a hand over her temple and she didnt calm as she usually did.

Dare was her Protector, and even now he was unable to save her from her nightmares. Images of destruction and pain, that was her burden to bear. As her sisters bore similar pains. Their gifts came with a price. He leaned down and spoke softly on her ear in their dragon language. "I am here my love."

She shot up then a scream tearing from her throat, her eyes wide and unseeing as she lashed out. He caught her hand and tugged her back against his chest. She struggled and he pressed his mouth to the space behind her ear, "Calm, easy, Ama...It's me, youre safe...always safe." He breathed to her.

"D-Dare?" She asked. He nodded and her hand now felshy and human again slid up into his hair and she let out a soft sob.

"What did you see?" He asked.

"I saw the Spire, they were taking Ilyanna, dragging her from Jorn." She said and looked up at him. "I know they didnt join the Spire, even I didnt when I woke. But I still belive they couldn't do this."

"Your dreams never lie Amaranda." Dare said strongly, he had to be strong for her, she couldnt ever doubt herself.

"No but they do sometimes hide a truth." She said and hugged his arms around her tighter. "Could I prevent this outcome if I try to protect her. If I give my will to the Spire will they spare my sisters?"

"The Spire will never stop at just one element my love. Once they hold water, they will try for the others. Just as the Wyverns want to monopolize all of you. They think if they take your humans, they will hold you. The Spire thinks if they can pursuade you you will be their symbol. The Elementals and the Protectors have always been outside their control. We will remain so." Dare said and smoothed her hair back, he needed to get her off of this topic. He feared what she would do if she thought she was in a corner. "Now, you should take a shower and get ready, they delivered the snow mobile car, we should go down and get a feel of the place befriend the family." 

"It's not like the old days is it. When you could drop out of the sky and snatch a man off the ground, keep him." She mused and leaned forward. "Now I must win the families favor to keep him." 

"Relax my love, everyone loves you, just...find a way that doesnt involve us stealing him." Dare said and cupped her face. "I will fall back on this and let you do your thing. I think they might be offended to learn that Aiden will be the mate of two dragons."

"You think itll be the dragon part or the two lovers part they will hate most?" Amaranda asked as she stood up. She had regained her coy smile and he smiled at her. Glad she had placed the dream aside for now. However once she was in the shower he left the room and grabbed his phone. He called Isaac.

"Dare!" The jovial immortal greeted. "What can I do for you?"

"Manda had a dream." Dare used Ilyanna's nick name for her. And the tone changed instantly.

"What of?" Isaac asked.

"She said she saw the Spire dragging Ilyanna away from you." Dare said.

"They wouldnt fucking dare!" Isaac snarled into the reciver and Dare grinned, for a human he had some fire in his soul. He had to, Ilyanna was light, and air. Soft and kind. But she could also be ruthless. Which was why she refused to go after her male protector. Dare shook his head, that was unimportant.

"Yes, I just felt you needed forewarning." Dare said.

"I would sooner give myself up to Baltic's demands." Isaac snapped and huffed a breath. "Enough of that, I'm aware. How goes the seduction of your human?"

"We just met him." Dare threw in.

"Indeed. So, how soon are we all gathering at StormKeep?" Isaac asked.

"Not now ass, we need time, times are different now." Dare said. "As Amaranda is unhappy to admit, we have a family to please."

"I cringe for you, I will go out and sacrifice a goat to your impending goals." Isaac joked and Dare let out a growl.

"Alright she's getting out of the shower, I'll text you later." Dare said.

"I'll call the others and inform them to wath out, we know how Manda's dreams can have hidden meaning. Better to all be informed." Isaac sighed into the phone and said his goodbye then hung up. Dare looked a the phone in his hand and closed his eyes. This time he wouldnt see Aiden die, this time he wouldnt see Amaranda's tears. This time he wouldnt be useless. Whatever was coming for them, he would kill it. 

***

Aiden stared at his mother as she bustled around the empty dining room. There were perhaps three rooms full in the main hotel portion of the lodge. And one cabin in use. The three above had ordered room service and the only diners that would be coming was Amaranda and Dare. His mother had insited upon him being cordial. In his actions and his conversation. Now she was hovering. 

"Mom..." he started. She shook her head and continued to tap away on her tablet. "Mom!" He growled out. he was shocked by the tone that came from him, it was dark and husky. She whipped around and gaped at him.

"Aiden." She gasped.

"Mom, I can handle this." He said.

"But why would an ocean scientist decide to come here, there are more lavish lodges and hotels further in and closer to towns. Why here?" She asked. "Surely it's a test."

"Mom, it's not a test, were a remote place, perhaps she likes the seclusion." Aiden added. "That is your winning line isnt it?"

"It is." She sighed happily. He figued it was because of the level of popularity they would get after Amaranda left. "Do you think she'll tell the press about us?"

"I promise to do so." Amaranda's voice cut into the room and Aiden tilted his head to see her. She was wearing a plush indigo sweater and black leggings tucked into her wintery boots. She was tugging a scarf off as Dare walked in behind her, he walked ver to Aiden and settled her coat and his on a chair. Aiden looked over the muscualr man, he was huge. He rippled with controlled movement, and when he looked up their eyes met, those bright eyes seemed amused. 

"Good evening Aiden." He greeted and turned to pull out a chair.

"I would be delighted if your family might join us." Amaranda offered. "I always enjoy great company."

"You should see her holiday dinners. StormKeep is always full of people." Dare smirked as Amaranda sat and he took his place on her right side. Aiden looked at his mother and bared his teeth at her in another oddly out of character action. She stiffened and frowned at him.

"I will see if they are busy." She bustled off and Aiden looked back at Amaranda and Dare.

"What's StormKeep?" He asked. She smiled and tilted her head. He was thinking of an old castle, on the sea side, where had that image come from?

"StormKeep, is a castle built on the island where I was born." She said, "In anchient languages the name translates out to StormKeep. It has stood since the times when knights and kings ruled the northern lands."

"An achient castle?" He asked.

"No, no, it's a small stronghold with a small village there. My family has held the town for as long as I can remember." She said and looked up. "Not many more than about thirty people living there?" 

"About thirty nine." Dare supplied.

"Ah thats right, the children." She shook her head. "It's a torpical place, all crystal clear ocean and white sand."

"Sounds like fun, all I usually see is ice and snow." He said and she giggled a little as Dare smiled. "What?"

"It's just, someone we used to know, was born in the cold and hated it too." She said and looked up as the rest of his family filed in. They settled at the massive table and he looked up apologetically. Amaranda grinned and turned to his mother. "So was Aiden born here?"

"Uh, actually near here, in the town." His mother supplied.

"I see, when did you come to aquire this place?" She asked.

"We were trying for yars to get ahold of this place and the bank refused our loans left and right. Then an investor mailed us a large sum to get started. He gets anual reports and a percentage. He helped us and managed to make this happen." His mother said as her hand settled on his fathers. 

Amaranda looked at Dare and he looked away with a slight smile twitching his mouth. "So what are you doing next I saw the Squid egg you found." His sister asked as she leaned forward. "You can see right through it to see the baby squid."

"Ah, well I wanted to see the cold world too, I think I might try for the arctic waters next, I heard free falling off a cliff into the icy water is exhillarating." She grinned. "I never tried the cold, usually thats my sisters intrests, though these days she's singing isnt she Dare?"

"Yes, her album comes out in two months." Dare supplied.

"Ah, we should plan a party for that." She waved a hand and Dare nodded.

"Your sister sings? How many siblings do yoiu have?" Aiden asked.

"I dont reval that were sisters to the press It's complicated to explain." Amaranda said and she looked up as the kitchen staff wheeled out the buffet. Dare stood and walked over as well as Aidens father. He didnt look up from Amaranda as she tilted her head to the side. "My sister is Ilyanna A'ris. She sings in Latin."

"I know her!" Aidens youngest sister grinned happily. "I have her songs from Itunes on my iPod." 

"My other sisters are Syria Tarrae, and Rune Calor." Amaranda said. "We all have the same father." 

Aiden felt as if he knew these names, something was bothering him about it. He stood up and made his way over to the buffet set up. Amaranda remained and talked to his siblings. He looked at her certain he'd seen her before. He closed his eyes trying to remember. He saw and image of her in a sheer filmy gown, sitting on a stone railing the wind blowing her hair. Everything looked mideval. Old and pleasing. He saw Dare there, a tunic loose over his chest leather breeches on his legs. He frowned and opened his eyes, his fantasies were getting the better of him. But as he looked to Amaranda he saw the mirror image of her imposed over her. 

What was happening to him, and why was he seeing her in clothes that didnt exist in this day and age. Was he halucinating. He could hear the ocean in his ears, and sweet whispers. He blinked as he stumbled his hands catching the buffet table and he inhaled shakily. What the hell was that?

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