They reached the town in the late afternoon, after passing through the village where they usually bought their supplies. Kain and Jarin had been talking the entire way, and Kain now knew he had misjudged the other man.
Devin turned to the band, speaking quietly. "I need to speak with someone and will be back later. Feel free to wander around, but please be careful. There may be people here who will recognize us and be curious about what we are doing. Don't answer any of their questions, unless you know them and can trust them," he smiled at them. "I understand that most of you know this, but I am informing Jarin and Adriel, mainly. I just want you to be safe."
Jarin smiled back at him. "I know, sir. Thank you for the warning."
"You're welcome," Devin gathered some books and a quill with ink. "I will be back later."
Kain nodded to him, then turned to Jarin. "Would you like to take a walk, or do you want to stay with your friend?"
Jarin smiled at him, a bit surprised. He looked at Adriel, who shook his head. Jarin guessed he wanted to get to know Ann better. He noticed that Kain was still waiting for an answer, and blushed. "Sure. Where do you want to go?"
Kain grinned. "There's a garden close to here, if you want to go there. It's quiet, and there usually aren't a lot of people there. We can go talk some more. It is also cooler there."
Jarin nodded. "It would be nice to get out of this heat."
Kain offered a small smile, then led the way. They were both quiet for a while after they entered the garden. Jarin was captivated by the simple beauty of the flowers and trees. He was not used to seeing them grow as freely as they were here.
Jarin turned away from the scenery, watching Kain while he was looking away. He wondered if there was something that had happened in the young man's life that made him so reserved, or if that was how he normally acted. He suspected it had something to do with his father, and he was curious about the effects of the magic that had been placed inside of him. He also knew it was not his place to ask such a personal question, so he began with something more simple.
"So, did you grow up here in Alendale?" Jarin asked, smiling down at the shorter man.
Kain nodded. "Yes. I was born in the hospital around the corner, actually. I have never lived anywhere else," he was quiet for a moment, then he smiled. "Did you grow up in the manor?"
Jarin frowned. "Yes, and I would imagine it was more fun growing up with more freedom to do what you wanted. My father has always made certain he knew where I was, and what I was doing. It has always given me a longing for freedom. My father has become less and less concerned with that in recent years, probably because he was too concentrated on his studies."
Kain led him down a path, which stopped at a man-made stream with a small waterfall. The water was trickling quietly, and it had a calming effect. He walked over to a bench, which was made of stone. Motioning for Jarin to have a seat, he took one, himself. Smiling at Jarin, Kain seemed to be searching for words. When he finally began speaking, he was quiet.
"I remember you from when we were little. I think Devin may have mentioned this to you already, but my father was sent to your manor years ago. He took me with him, and we met. You helped me carry one of my bags, grabbing it when the servants were not looking. We began playing a game, but I noticed you were nervous," he paused. "I didn't understand it then, but I think I do now. You were afraid to be my friend, because you were unsure of how your father would react."
Jarin stared at the beautiful young man. He was acting so different now, as if he had let a guard down. "I remember that, too. After my father called for you, I was wondering why you did not come back," he bit his lip, looking down. "I had not realized what a monster he was...I am so sorry for what he did to you."
Kain shook his head, turning to Jarin. "I was not being fair to you when I first saw you again. I was talking to one of the men the other day, and he made me see that you are not your father, or his spy. I should have seen that, in the first place. I'm sorry."
Jarin shook his head. "Don't be. I think I would be afraid of someone who was related to a person who hurt me, also," he smiled. "I know it is not really my place to ask, but...never mind." He shook his head again, then smiled.
"You were gonna ask about the magic, weren't you?" Kain grimaced, and Jarin saw insecurity written on his face. "Well...it's kinda odd. I don't really understand it, myself. I know that it has a pull toward other magic, and your father wants it. He used me, because I had the right aptitude for it, I guess."
Jarin took his hand, which made Kain tense up, at first. "Does it hurt you?" He was speaking quietly now.
Kain shook his head. "No, not really. I have strange dreams that I know are stemmed from it. They are of things I know nothing about, and people I have never met. I think your father was intending to use me as a spy to find out information, or something. He would have kept me there, if my own father hadn't managed to escape."
Jarin nodded, rubbing Kain's hand. He could feel himself becoming affected by the contact, as his cock was now pressing against his breeches. "It's connected to this cylinder that has the demon essence in it, isn't it?" He smiled softly at Kain.
Kain nodded, rubbing Jarin's hand, in return. "I think he wants to find me, so he can use me to destroy countries he would like out of the way. All he would have to do is unleash the demons, and they would obey him and take care of the rest. That is how I understand it, anyway. It makes me feel like a protected tool, and I hate it."
Jarin placed his other hand underneath the thief's. "I do not see it that way, at all. I see you as a kind, loving young man that I would like to get to know."
Kain stared at him, reaching out to touch his face. "I would like to get to know you, too."
Jarin smiled. "I think that would be nice." He was tempted to kiss the hand he was holding, but restrained himself. He was already feeling like he was going to die from the pressure in his cock, and did not want to make the other man uncomfortable, also. Instead, he stood up, pulling the smaller man up with him. "So, shall we explore the rest of the garden?" He was in need of fresh air to calm the inferno that was beginning to burn throughout his body.
Kain nodded. "Yes, there is much left to the garden that you must see."