‘I wonder what he and Asad will think about the fact that we actually talked to the Dry God,’ said Hector.
Garovel chortled. ‘I hope they’re jealous.’
Soon enough, Hector had to start heading back. Garovel kept going on about history, but Hector was only half-listening now. His mind had returned to worrying about the present. The Sandlords were scheduled to reconvene this afternoon, and now that the evacuation of Moaban was nearly finished, their excuse for delaying was more or less gone.
Hector could understand their reluctance to make a decision. They were stuck between the Vanguard and the Rainlords. One way or another, they had to betray someone’s trust. And of course, the well-being of their own subjects was at stake--and wasn’t that a lord’s priority?
It was enough to give Hector pause. He was a lord, too. Technically. This whole time, he felt like he hadn’t really understood what that meant--the responsibility it implied. And the potential consequences. He certainly didn’t envy the Sandlords’ position right now, but he was realizing that he might very well find himself in a similar one, someday.
He arrived at Dunehall again as the sun neared the height of its arc in the sky. From the outside, the castle looked largely the same. Hector supposed that was one advantage of being covered almost entirely in sand: structural vulnerabilities were hidden. Apart from the scarcely noticeable lump or depression in the sand’s surface, Dunehall seemed no different.
Most of the Sandlords were waiting in tents all along the castle grounds. The Rainlords were no longer here. They’d headed for Egas the previous day, while Hector and a handful of representatives had stayed behind at the request of Abbas.