:Vanyel, wake up,: Yfandes said, stirring Van out of his sleep. He groaned, rolling over and burying his head under his pillow. Savil had kept him up late the night before, working him like a dog, and all he wanted to do was sleep in.
:’Fandes, I want to sleep,: he replied grumpily, trying not to sound petulant as well. He heard the Companion’s snicker in his mind and huffed at her.
:Trust me, dear,: she said, and he could sense that her desire to see him was truly urgent, so he sighed and unburied himself, shivering at the coolness of the room. He pulled on layers of clothing, going for what was warmest and not caring if it matched. He ended up with a patchwork of uniform and casual clothes, and laughed wryly at the thought of wearing such a thing back at Forst Reach.
Yfandes met him as soon as he reached Companion’s Field, the first few layers already soaked by the heavy snow that had fallen overnight. The sun was barely over the horizon, the grey light barely filtering through the thick clouds that were still dropping snow.
“I hope whatever this is is worth dealing with all of this,” Van told Yfandes as she trotted up to him. She snorted, but didn’t deign to reply, simply presenting her side to him in an offer to mount. He used a nearby fence to help him get up onto her back, and then clung to her as she turned around and took off at a much faster speed than he’d been expecting.
:What is going on, ‘Fandes?: he asked. She turned her head just enough to look at him with one blue eye and then faced forward again, moving steadily the whole while. After a few moments, Van decided that she wasn't going to answer him and settled in for the ride. She wasn't heading towards any of the gates, so he knew they weren't headed far.
In fact, they ended up going into the Grove, and Yfandes slowed to a stately walk, weaving her way through the trees until she reached the chapel.
:'Fandes,: Van nearly whined. :What are we doing here?:
:You're here to take a day to yourself for once,: the Companion told him sternly. :Savil hasn't let you have a day to breathe since Tylendel...: She trailed off, clearly sensing Vanyel’s hurt.
:I told her that if everyone else was going to get a snow day, so we're you,: she continued briskly after a moment's pause. :And you won't be bothered here. So take whatever time you need. When you feel up to dealing with things again, we'll head back.:
:And you had to get me up early for this?: Van asked her tartly.
:I heard rumors that she was planning to come for you after breakfast,: Yfandes responded just as tartly. :So yes, I did.: She nudged him with her nose, pushing him towards the chapel. :Go, Chosen. I'll be here when you're ready.:
Vanyel took a couple of steps before turning to look back at the Companion. Suddenly, he threw himself back towards her, giving her a tight hug before heading into the chapel. He knew he didn't have to tell her how she loved her, because she knew him better than even himself.