"So it seems like Aesa's been monopolizing you," Anica said. She'd found him on that balcony that he and Tavros both favored, the one that looked out over Caristhium and offered such an excellent view of the sunset.
Ruin looked over at her and quirked a grin. "I thought you were fairly well occupied," he said. "I mean, the three of you..."
Anica shrugged. "I talked with Tarric and Werendril, and... they understand the importance of unfinished business."
Ruin considered that. "I'm glad it still feels that way to you. It certainly does to me. I don't know if we might have had a future, but... I would have liked to find out."
She smiled back and stepped onto his lap, planting one knee on either side of his hips. "You still can," she said. "The three of us talked about it, and the boys are okay taking care of each other if you're willing to share a night with me."
Ruin swallowed. "Aesa and I haven't talked about..."
"Aesa and I have," Anica told him. "She knows I was looking for you tonight, and she knows why. I wish you'd come back sooner."
Ruin stared up at her face, then nodded. "I wish I had, too. We thought we were doing the right thing, but we lost so much time..."
She traced a finger down the side of his jaw. "I think you could have been a paladin," she said. "You tried to do the right thing. You made the sacrifice, even if you didn't know how much of a sacrifice it was."
Ruin chuckled. "I'm not sure any sensible god would have me." Even as he said it, he remembered the storm the last time he was here, the thunder that sounded so much like laughter, and he wondered.
Anica sniffed, amused. "You underestimate them," she said, "but we're getting distracted."
"You're sitting on my lap," Ruin said. "That's a pretty big distraction."
She reached a hand down, touched him. "Yes, it is." She grinned. "So let's go get distracted by that."
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