“I’m going to be alright.”
Kasuf took his place as Chief Elder at the fire studying the young man who sat surrounded by several of the city’s young woman, all vying for this handsome stranger’s attention.
He watched as Daniel sat trying to answer all the questions about Earth that everyone flung at him; only his second day as a member of this world, he looked overwhelmed by the attention he was receiving. The Abydonians were welcoming but they saw him as their saviour and not as a member of their society.
Kasuf frowned, wondering if this man would break his daughter’s heart by taking up with one of the women who surrounded him giving adoring looks. As if his thoughts summoned her, Kasuf spotted his daughter walking towards the fire; her long black hair was tucked inside her hood to stop the breeze tossing it in her eyes.
When Sha’re saw Daniel, a glint appeared in her dark brown eyes, she surveyed his adoring crowd with slight annoyance creeping into her expression. Without a word, Sha’re walked towards her husband of only a few days and claimed her place at his side.
Kasuf watched Daniel as he slipped his arm around Sha’re’s waist drawing her closer before closing his eyes and resting his cheek against her curls, forgetting that anyone else was there or even in the entire universe.
With a smile Kasuf turned to talk to the other Elders with him knowing he had nothing to worry about.
Sha’re frowned as she saw her husband of little over a month standing away from everyone, leaning against a wall and staring out into the distance. She knew that no one would dare approach Daniel and disturb him but she was not no one to Daniel. Purposefully she walked towards him unable to stop her smile seeing his faraway look.
“Dan’iel,” Sha’re gently touched his hand making him turn to her, his blue eyes crinkling as he smiled at her, “It is time for dinner. Father is expecting us.”
“I’m not hungry,” Daniel told her.
“But you need to eat,” Sha’re reminded him, placing a soft kiss on his lips.
“I’ll move for that,” Daniel grinned, moving to kiss her again.
“Ah,” Sha’re moved out of his reach, pressing a finger to his lips, “Not until you’ve eaten.”
Daniel gave her a mock pout before he looked thoughtful, “Is that a promise?”
“No, my Dan’iel,” Sha’re giggled as he pouted even more; she wrapped her arms around his neck initiating a deep passionate kiss pulling back breathless she whispered, “That is a promise.”
“I see my daughter managed to persuade you to join us,” Kasuf smiled as Daniel was sat down by Sha’re.
“I’d crawl across broken glass for her,” Daniel replied without thought as he watched his wife.
“Just like her mother,” Kasuf told his good son.
“Really?” Daniel turned to his father in law, having never heard anything about Sha’re’s mother before.
“I would walk forever to see her smile at me,” Kasuf sighed in remembrance, “My daughter’s smile is very similar.”
“What?” Sha’re asked as she brought over something to drink for her and Daniel finding both her husband and father smiling at her.
“I was just telling Dan’iel how like your mother you are,” Kasuf told her, making her smile also.
Sha’re settled gracefully beside Daniel who broke off some bread and slipped it into her mouth, smiling as she licked a crumb from his thumb.
“I thought I was making you eat?” Sha’re laughed, leaning against him.
Daniel popped some meat into his mouth theatrically, “I’m eating.”
Daniel watched Sha’re as she brushed out her hair readying herself for bed, she knew he was watching and revelled in his attention. Finishing she placed the brush down and walked over to their bed where Daniel sat. Gracefully she knelt down in front of him brushing her lips to his softly before kissing him properly.
“Wow,” Daniel murmured when they parted.
“I did promise,” Sha’re laughed, her voice husky before she pushed him to lie down sliding onto him and kissing him again.
After a few minutes Sha’re moved away from her husband looking deep into his eyes, “Are you happy here, my husband?”
“What?” Daniel asked a little shocked by her question.
“Earlier you were alone,” Sha’re explained her train of thought, “You do that a great deal and it is…I wonder…Are you happy here, Dan’iel?”
“After my parents died,” Daniel explained, curling his fingers around Sha’re’s hair, “I spent a long time alone and I got used to it. Everyone here knows everything about each other and is always in each others lives. To be honest I find it overwhelming.”
“So you isolate yourself for a while,” Sha’re leaned her head against her husband’s shoulder, “I will stay away when you do this if you want.”
Daniel moved so she looked into his eyes, “Don’t. I never want to be isolated from you. Others fine but never you.”
Sha’re’s smile was dazzling as she kissed him again pulling him even closer to her.
“Do you love me?”
Sha’re was startled by his question as she lay curled against him, her legs tangled with his.
“Why do you ask?” she wondered.
“I just…I need to know,” Daniel stammered, “Do you?”
Sha’re turned to look at him, “You are my husband.”
“No offence, Sha’re,” Daniel frowned, “But in this society that doesn’t actually mean much.”
It was at that moment Sha’re realised just how fragile Daniel’s heart was, how vulnerable he was in her arms and how with one word she could completely destroy him. It was an amazing feeling of power that she had never known before and Sha’re smiled.
“I love you more than I can possibly say, my Dan’iel,” she told him, seeing the relief, joy and amazement fill his blue eyes; “It is something I cannot put into words but let me show you.”
Daniel melted as she kissed him, his touches leaving no question in her mind exactly how he felt for her.
Daniel lay on his back his hands laced behind his head as he stared up at the twinkling lights against the black cloth of night. At his side his wife of about six months lay curled beside him, wrapped in a blanket watching him watch the stars.
“Dan’iel,” she finally broke the silence.
“Yes, love,” he answered absently.
“I know you are from a different world and I love that you are unusual,” Sha’re told him before sighing, “But there are times I wish I could understand you.”
“What?” Daniel asked in confusion.
Sha’re turned so she was lying on her stomach, her chin resting on his chest, looking up at him, “What is it about the stars, Dan’iel? Why are we out here in the cold watching the night sky when we could be in our nice warm bed?”
Daniel smiled, “On Earth there are large bodies of saltwater called oceans. A long time ago men used to travel from country to country via boats…caravans that float; anyway to guide themselves home they found their way by using the stars.”
Sha’re rolled her eyes at him, “That is a nice story but it does not explain.”
“When I was young I lived in Egypt which is very like here and I had never seen the ocean. I remember my father one night, after I’d begged him for a story, telling me one about how men sailed by the stars,” Daniel continued his explanation, “The next day I made myself a pretend boat with one of the crates my parents used to pack the artefacts they found and every night I pretended that I was finding my way by the stars back to my family.”
Sha’re sighed thoughtfully, “You must have been such a sweet child.”
Daniel laughed before continuing, “Finally after all the years of pretending, I used the stars to find the woman I want to spend my life with and a family through her.”
“By the stars?”
“All the symbols on the Chappa-aii with the exception of the point of origin are star constellations,” Daniel explained, “I found the address; the stars which guided me to you.”
Sha’re crawled up and kissed him, he may have been strange but she loved him and she loved the stars for bringing her this incredible man.