Dante’s Visit Part 2
I looked over at the clock again, fifteen minutes to seven. I forget that Dante has been late by a week already, I forget that it doesn’t matter how often I look at the clock, it won’t make him be here. I look again, thirteen minutes till seven. I can hear Rowley downstairs, giving the chests a most needed sorting, I hear him humming an old tune, slow and steady, just like the rain that’s beginning to fall.
I get up from the couch to check on the pie I put in the oven, it must be ready by now.
“Luthia, are you baking another pie?”
I look over at our table, crowded to the edges with pies. Apple and cinnamon, Pumpkin and caramel, baking, baking, baking, waiting for the day to end and him not to show up yet again. I look at the stairs, wondering if I should write another letter.
The rain is beating harder now, the street lamps flicker to life, and I hear a knock at the door. Could it be Dante? Please Notch let it be so. I walk over to the door and prepare myself for whoever it is.
“Dante! What in the name of the gods has happened to you?”
“I’m sorry Ms. Luthia, I guess I’m quite a lot later than promised.”
“Dante, please tell me, what happened to you?”
But he couldn’t answer, for he had slumped against the open doorway, unconscious.
“Astley! Astley, help me!”
“Luthia, whatever is the matter? Oh my word.”
“Help me get him downstairs”
We awkwardly slide Dante’s body down the ladder, and carry him into the spare bedroom.
“Oh, what about Alice?”
“Don’t worry, I’ll take care of Alice, you just take care of him.”
As Astley climbs up the ladder I begin to shift Dante’s shirt over his head and start to examine his upper chest. His body is scarred beyond the normal amount, arrow piercings, shrapnel scars, creeper burns and fist shaped bruises range all over his chest. But what worries me the most, is that his veins are black. I open a small cut on his arm to see if what I believe I am seeing is true. As I feared, his blood runs black. I rack my mind for something that could have caused this but find nothing there, I have never seen anything like this. Black blood, no mob that I know of causes blood to run black. But I must start to heal what I know how to, I thank my lucky stars that I gathered all the rare ingredients needed for potions two weeks ago, or I would have nothing to help Dante.
I quickly gather any potion I know I’ll need. Strength, healing and regeneration are the first I slowly pour down his throat. Then I clean his wounds, thinking that this black blood is caused by infection, but I’ll have to wait to see if that theory is correct. I mend his wounds, but there is little more to do than wait for him to wake. Astley brings me some dinner and then leaves for bed. The hours pass slowly and many times I feel my eyelids growing heavier an heavier until they drop and do not come back up.
“Ms Luthia? Ms Luthia, is that you?”
“Dante! Oh Dante, thank Notch your alive!”
“I’m so sorry Ms Luthia, I wanted to come but….”
“It’s alright Dante, just tell me what happened”
“You knew of Strike did you not?”
“Yes, never met the man, but I did hear of him”
“He was killed by his brother Moonlight, and his friend Blues called people together to fight him. I did not know Strike, only heard of him but, I, I don’t know, it just didn’t seem right for a brother to turn on a brother for any reason. His armies came at night and he brought something with him. A creature from the deepest depths of the nether, “The Wither”. Having wings, me and a woman named named “bunny” fought it. Every time it hit me, I felt like part of my soul was stolen, like everything good was turning to ash. We finally defeated it, the rising sun burning the rest of Moonlight’s army while he fell by the blade that Blues carried to the battle. And now I am here, telling you the story.”
I stared back at him my mouth agape, if I had known what he’d been through, I certainly wouldn’t have even dreamed of him still coming to visit.
“Dante, you didn’t have to come here. You could have wrote when you were feeling better. Told me you couldn’t come.”
“My father told me to never break a promise. I have not broken one to this day, and never plan to break one.”
“Your a crazy man Dante.”
“It’s a crazy world we live in Ms Luthia, and every day it just gets more crazy.”
We laughed at that. I laughed at how old my young friend sounded, and he laughed simply to laugh.
He got much better over the weeks he stayed with us. The strength of his Valkyrie mother flowing through his veins, cleansing his body of the poison that tainted his blood. He stayed in New Mistral for two weeks, to make up for lost time he said. He helped up build our town hall, plant our farms and eat every last pie I had baked. In the evenings he would talk with Astley, and I get the feeling that they are good friends now.
He left four days back, promising to visit, and to not be late. His wounds mended, but scars still there. Riding his half blind cow into the sunrise, across the bridge, through the mountains, and back to his house on a hill. And I sit on my porch each evening looking at the stars, and waiting for the next time Dante decides to visit.
Authoress’s Note: Well, how did you like it? I know it came a little late, but I think the end result is quite dandy. I guess you could call this the first gift of the New Year since it’s a bit late for Christmas. Happy new year everyone! I hope this year is a good one for you, and I hope all of you had a fantastic time last night.
To Lily: You are the sister I always wanted and finally got. Love Leah <3