by Sophia Johnson
Slowly, Muriele rose to her feet. Magnus did not move. Just stared at her. His eyes narrowed to cold slits. Promising something. What? The room became deadly quiet. No one moved. The dancer stood still, her eyes studying them.
Muriele took a step, then two. She didn't dare look behind her. When she reached the doorway, the sound of his footsteps matched her own.
When she started up the stairwell, she grabbed her skirts above her knees and ran up the stone steps like all the wolves in the forest nipped at her heels. When she turned a corner, she hesitated. Listened.
Had Sir Magnus returned to the great hall? Nay!
He slowly climbed.
Each booted step rang an ominous warning.
Muriele burst out onto the landing. She rushed past the torch flickering in its wall bracket, her eye on the doorway, her hand outstretched far ahead of time.
She chanced a quick glance behind her. Oh, Saints! She wished she had not.
He stepped out of the gloom into the light as he stalked her, his steps measured, his lips set in a grim line. His large hands clenched and relaxed as if they longed to wrap themselves around her neck.
The length and tempo of his stride quickened, eating up the distance between them. Her heart thudded. She reached the door. Frantic knowing he was so close, she fumbled with the latch. With all her might, she shoved the door until it was open enough for her to squeeze through. Turning, she pushed with both hands, her feet anchored to the floor. It near closed. With a sharp, loud noise, his boot slammed against the outside edge. She was but a finger's width away from latching it.
Relax and let your imagination take you into this tale of love through the ages.