Elizabeth stood, taking Ferryl’s hand when he offered, following him through the mossy grove to a small clearing in the forest where stood a lone fruit tree, kissed by flickering shards of sunlight, its inky branches slender and curled on the ends like beckoning fingers of midnight, its shimmering leaves and plump fruits lush and golden, glowing and sparkling in the mottled light like fireflies dancing about the branches.
“These are called chalam. Have you ever had one?” he asked as he picked the two ripest from the tree.
Elizabeth grinned and toyed with her amulet, running it along its chain. “I’ve lived here my whole life, remember? I’ve had a chalam.”
“Oh, it’s just that—”
“They only grow around the cliffs. I know,” she grinned, her fingers brushing his as she took the fruit he offered.
He gave her a skeptical grin. “Well there is an old legend about the fruit. Have you heard of it?”
She shook her head as she bit into the juicy snack.
“In the ancient tongue, chalam means dream. It is said that those who share of chalam from the same tree shall be forever knitted by the same destiny.”
She raised a brow. “Do you believe that’s true?”
He took a casual bite of his fruit, its sweetness bursting in riotous flavors on his tongue. “I don’t know,” he shrugged. “I suppose we’ll have to find out.”