Hello, everyone. I’m finally back again, with the conclusion of The Escape! For a much-needed refresher, here’s part eight. And now, the conclusion!
When the two arrived at the cottage, Erica hung back, suddenly shy. What if they hold what happened to Alanna against me?
Alanna, on the other hand, flung open the door and almost bounced into the tiny front room, too excited to bother knocking. She was greeted by the surprised stares of her family, then she was immediately mobbed by three smaller children, obviously her siblings. Two of them were young boys who looked to be the same age, though one looked like a male version of Alanna and the other had dark hair and eyes. The third was a small girl who couldn’t have been more than four. She, however, was the most enthusiastic in greeting her sister. Throwing her arms around Alanna, she exclaimed “Alanna! I missed you!”
Alanna laughed and hugged her little sister. “I missed you too, Brenna! Why, you grew!”
Brenna’s eyes widened. “I grew? Really?”
Alanna laughed. “Really.” Then, she turned to her brothers, who had obviously been waiting for their chance to get in unhindered. “Casey, Connor, did you miss me too?”
Both boys nodded and attacked their sister. “We missed you, Alanna, especially when we got into trouble!”
Alanna gasped in mock horror. “You got in trouble without me? I can’t believe that! This calls for tickles!” She vigorously tickled her brothers until they could hardly talk for laughing. Then she finally pulled herself away from the little ones and walked over to her parents, who she greeted with a hug and a kiss for each. “Hello, Da, Mother. I missed you.”
Alanna’s father, a tall, dark man, hugged her close. “Alanna, we thought we’d never see you again!”
Alanna grew sober. “I thought the same a few times, Da.” He held her close and whispered something, with Alanna’s mother joining in. Finally, they released Alanna, who had regained her bright attitude. “Da, Mother, there’s someone I’d like you to meet!” She turned toward Erica. “Erica, come meet Da and Mother!”
Erica hesitantly stepped forward. “Hello, sir, mistress. I’m sorry about . . . what happened to Alanna.”
Alanna laughed. “Erica, don’t worry! It wasn’t your fault.” She turned back to her parents. “Not only was my capture not Erica’s fault, she helped me escape. And she believes in the Great King!” Alanna poured out the story, wile Erica stood awkwardly beside her, insisting that Alanna exaggerated.
When the tale was finished, Alanna’s father stood. “We thank you for helping Alanna return to us, and we welcome you to our home.”
Erica blushed. “I wouldn’t want to impose, sir.”
He waved her comment away. “Nonsense. Any follower of the Great King and any friend of Alanna’s is welcome in our home.”
Erica smiled. “Thank you sir, and may the Great King bless you all.”
Alanna’s father smiled at her. “And may he bless you as well, Erica.”
Alanna laughed. “You see, Erica? We’re home!”
What did you think? I hoped you liked it! Thank you for being patient with my forgetting to post; I really am sorry. Thanks for reading!