Maybe Koen was touched too. Maybe that's why I felt the weight of his hand, sudden, heavy, against my lower back. A gesture didn't mean anything, I told myself. But I couldn't stop my spine from getting stiff as I turned my attention to our reflections in the observation glass. Koen's eyes were wide, showing no hint of tenderness -- but his hand made slow firm circles on the small of my back. Goose bumps lifted over my arms.
Am I the only one that finds random, unasked-for touching creepy??
Silvan's expression changed. It was like a light flickered on in his mind, pale at first, then growing brighter. In our silence he stepped close. Soon he stood only an arm's length away. He smelled like strong tea and animal musk. I remembered that scene vividly, remembered the weight of his lips(1).
I remembered my dreams. And my jaw tightened. I told myself that Silvan wasn't my bashert. No, no, Silvan belonged to Rachel(2).
"Terra," he began. His tongue darted out, wetting his mouth. "You're a specialist."
"I am," I agreed, casting a self-cautious eye to the braid on his shoulder.
"Have you had any suitors yet?"
"Suitors?" I began uncertainly. "Silvan, we're not sixteen yet. You know that no one is allowed to declare their intentions."
"Oh, I don't mean all that pomp and circumstance." He gave his head a fierce shake. "I just wanted to know if any boys have expressed interest in you. Yet."
His eyes were so wide, they showed white at the edges. I didn't like their hunger of their intensity. So I stepped away from him, trying to ignore how my heart was suddenly sounding in my chest.
(1)From a brief brushing of lips 4 years ago.
(2)Her best friend. Also, bashert means soul-mate, essentially.
Erm. I get the feeling that he's interested in her because she's a specialist - and his current main squeeze (Rachel) is only a merchant. *glowers*
Why are both of these guys so effing creepy???