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‘Maybe a little comforting, yeah,’ said Garovel. ‘But please don’t pick a fight with anyone here. There are most definitely servants here who really ARE way more powerful than you.’
‘I’m almost certain that Nasira’s father is one of them. And if he is, then he’s probably near Harper’s level of strength. At least.’
‘Aw, fuck... why did we come here, again?’
Meriwether’s entourage was shown to a large guest chamber, where Nasira asked the three of them to wait. She, Badat, and Emerix disappeared afterward. The Prince took a seat by the empty fireplace and turned on the adjacent television. He started flipping through the channels, only about half of which seemed to be in Mohssian.
Hector and Lynn both remained standing, which drew Meriwether’s curious look. “I appreciate your diligence, but you are both a little too on edge, I think. I understand that you might find Sandlords somewhat intimidating, but they are not going to harm us. I assure you.”
“You seem certain, Your Highness.”
“I lived in this very castle for several years when I was younger,” said Meriwether. “I consider the people here as true and dear to me as my own family.”
That sounded like a loaded statement, considering everything Hector knew about Atreyan royalty.
‘Hmm. Ask him if he’s always known that they had reapers.’
“Uh, Prince Meriwether, sir, ah...”
“Have you always known that, um... that the Sandlords have reapers on their side?”
“Not as such, no. I have always known that the people here possess special powers, of course, but I never imagined that... deathly phantoms might be the source of said powers.”
Lynn looked at Hector. “Have you already seen them around?”
He nodded. “G-Garovel has already counted nine. Er--not including himself. And, uh--we’re pretty sure there are more than that.”
Lynn did not seem pleased by that news.
Meriwether, on the other hand, didn’t seem particularly fazed by it. “Relax yourselves,” he said. “You do not need to follow me everywhere around the castle. This place is quite safe. As long as you do not leave the grounds without me, we will be fine. You have your own business to attend to, do you not?”
“I do, but--”
Meriwether stood up again and pulled a bulky ring off of his left index finger. It featured a silvery bell with a sapphire at its heart.
He offered it to Lynn. “If anyone questions why you are here, show them this.”