A Husband's Love

Disclaimer: I own all of the characters in this, even the un-main ones. Mine mine, and mine.

*Chapter 1*

Meria stood at the brink of the chasm, staring down into its strange black depths. It was like the darkness lived, instead of just being empty of light, and she knew why. She could still hear the ghost-like wailing of the last one who had fallen in, giving their life to the divide.
Not for long. She quelled the urge to laugh hysterically and took off her necklace. The glimmer of it made her look longingly at it one last time. A puzzle of interlocking gold pieces and strands, littered with black rubies and blood-red garnets, it had rested loftily in the cleft of her collarbones and spilled down her chest. Connor had made it for her the night that she had borne their child, Meredith.
That had been seven years ago, and now near everything had lost its shine for her, the thing that made her want to live had escaped somehow and not knowing what it was, she could not get it back. Only her magic had kept her alive now, but something about tonight had stopped even her love for magic. Now there was naught to do but throw herself down, give herself over to the darkness.

Meredith looked up from her spellweaving at the fireplace, banishing the dancing cats with a crude wave of her hand.
" Daddy, Mommy's gone!"
Had Connor been any other husband, he would have assumed that she'd gone to the garden for herbs for their dinner, but he wasn't. He was the husband of the Lady Firecaller Meria Dragonslore, the only other living firecaster in the realm. Meredith had inherited her mothers abilities, and if she said that Meria was gone, something was dangerously wrong.
" Can you find her?" Connor asked, crouching and holding his daughters small pale hands in his own, dwarfing them considerably.
She made a small moue of concentration while she thought and tried to find her mothers mind out of the rest of the villagers, another thing the firecasters could do, find the burning life within those around them. " The chasm! She's about to throw herself off!"
Connor swore and threw himself up, grabbing his bow, arrow quiver, and spelled rope as he tore out of the house.
Meredith stared after her father. In all the seven years she'd been alive, she's never heard him say such things. He had taken his rope, which meant something was wrong, something to do with Mommy. She knew she had to help, or Mommy wouldn't be coming home tonight.

* *
*

"Meria Dragonslore, I forbid you to take another step!" Connor shouted, feeling very much like a father with his disobedient child.
He set his bow with an arrow, and Meria turned and laughed at her husband. " There are no more steps for me to take, Connor." She said quietly into the night. " There is nothing left for me here."
" Don't say that!" Connor yelled. " There is me! And Meredith. Isn't that enough for you?"
Meria turned her pale face to the moon, full tonight. Her blue eyes turned silver in the liquid beams that shone through the clouds, her dark red hair spilling to the ground like a fiery waterfall. Connor caught his breath as she opened her mouth and started singing a haunting melody in words that flowed together like honey over bread. He had heard them once before, at a funeral; she was singing her own death lament.
" Mommy! Stop that!" Came Meredith's clear voice from behind him. " Just stop."
She ran forwards, and Meria stopped singing to look at her small daughter. Two pairs of ice blue eyes stared at each other, one set shrouded by limp blond hair, tangled from running.
" Meredith, my love. I am so sorry." Meria turned back to the chasm.
" If you jump, I will too!" Meredith shouted, voice full of painful wisdom that no small girl should have possessed, no matter who had borne her.
Meria whirled to face her daughter and reached out a pale hand to touch her equally pale daughter's forehead. " No, you won't."
Connor had lived with Meria long enough to know a binding spell when he saw one being cast.
" I love you." She whispered, once again turned to face the dark rip in the ground, and stepped off the side.

* *
*

She thought she had gotten away with it. She thought she had done what she must do to end her life.
A sharp pain pierced her ecstasy and brought her to a screeching halt in her descent down the warm darkness. Her hand flew to her shoulder and felt the long iron arrow sticking out over her breast, caught in the links of her necklace. She was suspended on a length of strong black rope that was no thicker than her littlest finger.
" Connor." She muttered dully against the pain, realizing the trademark of her husband, a trademark she had helped create.
She was yanked up brutally, one jerk after the other, tearing the arrow wound deeper. By the time Connor pulled her over the edge and into his arms, she was unconscious.