When Ime and Meah emerge through the doors of the castle, the army’s cheers hit them like a wall of noise. Their names are chanted through the hundreds of thousands of men and women gathered. A small number of Aryd Candok’s men stayed behind, but the rest of his army has already headed back to their homeland of Linbodi.
The allied leaders already confirmed Klaeon’s death, but Ime is urged to repeat the news. “Klaeon is dead. His reign of evil is over and this land is now free. But those of you who fought for him are welcome to our ranks if you so choose. We shall be returning to Kellahn, but for those of you who fought so gallantly, you are welcome to join us or head back to your homes and families.”
More cheers follow and it takes several minutes for the immense crowd to be calmed before Ime continues. “I thank all of you for fighting and for any and all sacrifices that were made in order for this victory to be achieved. This war was not only won by me, but by all of you. A celebration is waiting for us when we return, not only for our accomplishment,” Ime pulls Meah close. “But also for the freedom of all lands and magic users and non-magic users across this amazing land of Myldea.”
Cheering nearly deafens Ime and Meah, but soon the army is on the move, making its way back to Kellahn. As they march, some peel off to head back to their homes or to spread stories to the passing towns, villages, and cities about the battle.
The returning army reaches Kellahn within two weeks and a large gathering waits for them. Nearly the entire city of Kellahn is waiting for them at the top of the canyon. But the most surprising group waiting for the army is the one standing at the front.
The first one they see is Altan with Lyrrel, Bon, and Cal standing on either side. Meah’s surprise soon turns to shock, joined by Ime’s shocked face when they see the two standing off to the side.
Ime and Meah run ahead of the army to reach Daniil and Kylii before the army. They wrap their arms around the brothers and tears fall freely. Tanith leaps onto Daniil, licking his face and nuzzling him. She does the same for Kylii and to his surprise he can hear her voice.
Altan approaches Ime and Meah, beaming. “Welcome back.”
Meah smiles and hugs Altan, whose eyes widen in surprise. “How is this possible?”
“You did this,” Lyrrel says. “The release of your magic was strong enough to reach us here in Kellahn.”
Altan faces the entire army as it approaches. “Our returning victors, a celebration has been prepared in your honor.”
Ime takes Meah’s hand and they smile at one another. He steps forward. “We’d like to request an addition to the celebration.” Altan motions for Ime to continue. “A wedding celebration.”
The crowds cheer and Daniil and Kylii congratulate Ime and Meah. Altan doesn’t argue the fact they’re already married and agrees. The army disperses, heading down into the city for the celebration.
The allied leaders each congratulate Ime and Meah and welcome the Lakeen brothers back. Jada Boor in particular, gives Kylii a lengthy hug, but doesn’t say a word. When she releases him, Kylii’s face is alight with excitement and he can’t keep the large smile from his face.
Everyone heads down the path to the city, but Meah stops Daniil and Kylii. “Hold on. Wait here for a minute longer.”
The brothers stare at her confused, but soon they understand. They nod and Meah leads Ime down into the canyon as a lone figure appears before the brothers. Meah catches a peek as the three figures embrace and Kiphy’s sobs are heard behind.