--donation bonus (day #27, post 2/5)--
David still required answers. “Meri, please explain--”
“Not in front of him.”
“What now, then?” said Luther.
Not more than thirty seconds later, a group of soldiers in tactical gear kicked down the front door and stormed into the room. The one at the head of the troupe called through a black helmet, “Lord David, sir! Are you alright?!”
“And who are THEY?!” said David. “Someone explain what is happening!”
Meriwether lowered his weapon. “Everything is fine,” he told the armed men. “Please take Luther into custody now on suspicion of treason and murder.”
The lead soldier hesitated. “I’m sorry, Lord Meriwether, but we do not take orders from you.”
“Right.” Meriwether looked over at David. “If you would be so kind.”
David was incredulous. “Uh--please do as Meri says?”
David watched a pair of soldiers emerge from the crowd and haul Luther away. He was still waiting for his explanation as Meriwether addressed the apparent guard captain.
“Is she on her way?”
And from that small exchange, David began to understand, though the details still eluded him. “These are Duchess Jezebel’s men?”
“Yes,” said Meriwether. “I knew she had someone observing your residence. Luther could not have had more than a handful of men waiting outside, so I knew it would only be a matter of time until the duchess’ watchers called in enough reinforcements to completely overwhelm them.”
David stared at him. “Tell me honestly. Are you really Meriwether? Are you now going to pull your face off and reveal that you are actually someone else?”
The man snorted a laugh. “I have only been working with the duchess for a few days. She told me to keep my involvement a secret from you. I have been thinking about telling you anyway. That was one of the reasons I came here tonight, in fact.”
David sighed. “I thought I had earned her trust.” He supposed it was good that he hadn’t, though.
Jezebel soon arrived, also in a robe over her pajamas. Her face spoke of weary relief when she saw them. “I am glad to see you are both unhurt.”
David frowned at her. “Could you not have at least warned me about this plan to trap Luther?”