He didn’t take into account the Khizaran propensity for extremes. Nor did he consider the quantities of brandy floating around in their systems. Even though she was sitting on the ground, Linsora lost her balance and rolled on the floor. Unable to stop laughing, she held her stomach and roared convulsively, gasping for breath.
“Linsora, it’s not that funny!” Permac shook her. The amusement she felt began to affect him. He laughed along but sent serenity toward her. Far too late he realized she was staring back at him, no longer laughing.
“You did this to me!” She lunged. Her fists pounded whatever surface of his body she could reach. He tried to curl into a ball until she used her clawed nails to gouge the back of his hands. He yelped in pain.
“Enough!” Permac twisted, grabbed her wrists, and ended up sitting on top of her. “Yes, I did it. And you didn’t manage to kill me–again.”
“I don’t use knives when I’ve been drinking,” Linsora panted. She started to laugh again. “I don’t know which was more annoying–laughing or stopping.”
“Annoying? You think it’s not annoying to be hit and scratched?” Permac shouted. “What’s funny now? I didn’t do anything this time.”
Linsora dissolved into another fit of laughter. “You’re angry! That’s what’s so funny. If you weren’t so afraid I’d poke your eyes out, you’d let go and hit me. And you don’t like feeling that way.”
Permac’s hands slipped from around her wrists to clasp her hands. She returned the embrace, clawed fingers entwined in clawed fingers. He felt a warmth from her, an odd openness, maybe affection. He leaned down toward her. His lips lightly brushed hers. He saw a flash reflected in her eyes just moments before the booming crash from a lightning strike made them jerk in opposite directions, banging their foreheads together.
“Storm!” she called suddenly.
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