That night Anneli and Castor sat by the fire; Anneli watched the crackling fire mesmerized by the dancing orange flames. “How come you are not afraid of me?” asked Anneli. Anneli was tempted to reach he hand into the flames but knew it would burn him so he did not try.
“Considering how the people here reach to you I am not surprised you think that. But where I am from it is no strange to see monsters and demons like you around. Many people keep demons a pets or helpers in my country.”
“Where are you from?” The words seemed to slip out of Anneli’s lips unconsciously as he was almost hypnotized by the snapping of the fire wood and heat that emanated.
“Well in my country where the river meets the ocean is my city. The way the land curls by the sea creates a harbor. In the ancient times Pyropolis was a giant temple city to worship the fire goddess but now it is just a port city. There isn’t anything much beyond the city, it is just the desert which spreads for miles and miles beyond the horizon.”
“Are you going to go back there? After you get your rose…”
“Yes, but I doubt I will stay there.”
“I’m not really very welcome in my country anymore, after I finish my task I will probably leave and never go back.”
“How come?” Anneli was prodding a sensitive topic with a iron rod. Castor did not want to answer honestly but Anneli knew nothing about his past anyway.
“My father is very disappointed in me and my brother prefers if I never existed. There is nothing for me there anymore.” Castor glanced at Anneli who was still looking into the fire, “I will still take you to the desert don’t worry.”
Anneli leaned against Castor’s shoulder. “You know Anneli,” began Castor, “I don’t know what you are planning on finding in the desert, there is honestly nothing there but sand and scorching heat.”
“There is nothing for me here either so it doesn’t really matter,” replied Anneli.
“What if you don’t find it?” Castor began to fiddle with his knife.
“I don’t know, but if what I was told is true I want to go find someone to love even if it is impossible.”
“What if you do find it in the desert?”
“Then there won’t be a reason to leave, if I can be someone I love and who loves me.”
Castor wanted to say that he does not need to go to the desert do that, but he did not say a word.