A sharp pain suddenly appeared behind my eyes, then through my whole body. I screamed, not so much from the pain as from shock. It was a good type of hurt, like having a thorn removed. It made me feel strangely lighter, like a burden as being removed from me. I saw a flash, red through my closed eyelids.
I opened my eyes slowly, almost fearfully. Azara was openly staring at me, her mouth an O.
“W-what just happened?” I stumbled over the words. I felt lightheaded and dizzy, yet everything around looked sharper, and had a weird sort of aura around it. The aura was a slight glow, surrounding everything like mist, but I could still see everything clearly. Azara’s glow looked even more defined than before.
“You,” she told me slowly, like she didn’t want to alarm me, “are most definitely a faery.” Her tone switched to being a bit more nonchalant and matter-of-fact, like she wanted this comment to sound completely normal, “one with strong water essence, by the look of it.”
This really was all too much. Everything came back and hit me again, now that I knew for sure that it was all true. The world started spinning. I heard Azara call out me name, then everything turned black as I passed out.
Yeah. Look, you would faint too if this happened to you.
I woke up later; lying on my bed, my head hurting a little and my back was sore as hell. I blinked drowsily for a second, facing the wall. Ow, my back really did hurt. Why? Then I remembered everything again- surprisingly, I didn’t freak out too much. I probably hurt my head and back when I fell, I thought and sat up slowly. Azara was sitting n the ground, reading the book. And she was the size of a teenage girl, about my height maybe.
Huh? When did that happen? “Azara?”
She jumped, surprised, and turned to me. “Are you okay?” she asked worriedly, getting up and walking over to me, “you fainted!”
“Yeah, I know.” I said quickly, “Why are you, um, big?”
Azara looked down at herself and laughed a little, “This is actually my normal size. The Fae usually use the small size for traveling. This is what’s natural. It’s harder to use major shape shifting magic here though, so I hadn’t done it yet. When you fainted though, I got worried to I changed to my actual size and moved you.” Her expression became more worried as she looked me over, ‘how are you feeling?”
“I’m fine, except my back hurts really badly.” I avoided thinking about the whole being a faery thing,. I needed to just concentrate on what I understood just then. I didn’t need to ask any more question about faeries and such at the moment.
Azara glanced over my shoulder.
“Did I fall on it or something?” I shrugged my shoulder to stretch it out a bit and I felt… something. ‘What’s-“ I reached my hand behind my back to touch the hollow between my shoulder blades and felt something warm and hard, something that definitely wasn’t supposed to be here.
She bit her lip and with a worried little smile, “those are just your wings.” She was looking at me and speaking like she thought I was going to collapse again.
I groaned. Obviously the “not thinking about it” thing was never going to happen. I gently probed the wings, folded against my back. They were the things that hurt so badly, it turned out.
“You did sort of fall on them, and they’ve been concealed for so long that they will be stiff for a little while.” She told me with a reassuring gaze.
“Okay.” I said, and we were silent for a while. Questions were now spinning through my head every second. Nope, not thinking about definitely wasn’t ever happening. Azara was staring down and fiddling with her necklace, letting me take my time for once.
“So, “ I dragged out the word, “I’m a faery. Not human.”
Azara looked into my eyes, “yes.”
I nodded. I was just going to ask her everything now, while I was surprisingly calm, “why is everything all glowy?”
She straightened, sensing my curiosity, “You’re seeing Quintessence. It’s in everything. You should be able to tell what has the most pure Quintessence too.”
Uh huh. Right. “Quintessence?”
Her eyes got misty, like she was looking at something far way, “it’s the purest thing in the all worlds.” She gestured at our jewels, “We’re both wearing things made of almost pure Quintessence.”
I touched the gem that hung in the middle of my forehead, right above my eyes. It was cool to the touch and sent tingles down my fingers through my arm. “yeah, you never really explained Shaiils to me.”
Azara grinned, like it was her favorite subject for talking about, “well, we have a lot to discuss, don’t we?”