After a couple more bites, Hector found himself looking around the table for the innkeeper and his son. The quaint dining chamber was packed with people, but Hector only saw Rainlords, the Najirs, and a whole bunch of chattering reapers. When he looked through the open eastern doorway, however, he spotted the kid peeking out from behind the corner there, watching everyone.
Watching everyone eat. And that look on his face. A half-open mouth. Glowing eyes wide with longing.
Hector stopped. He looked at Garovel, but the reaper had gotten swept up in one of the many conversations going on. So many of them were talking at once that Hector could barely even parse out Garovel’s voice in his head.
When he looked to the kid again, the innkeeper was there with him, ushering him away from the doorway.
Hector stood and left the table, bringing the meal that he’d still barely touched with him.
As he approached, the innkeeper seemed both frightened and nervous, so Hector slowed his pace a little in hopes of looking as non-threatening as possible. Perhaps Zeff’s armor cloud wasn’t helping in that regard--in fact, it might’ve even been dangerous for them if he got too close. When Hector set the meal down on the nearest table and backed way, the innkeeper appeared to relax somewhat.
After a nod from his father, the kid grabbed it, and Hector watched him wolf it down.
So it was like he’d thought, after all. Hector had been wondering if he was simply mistaken. It did seem strange to him that the innkeeper would prioritize feeding guests over his own child. Was there some reason for that?
He got his answer when several more Hun’Kui children entered from the next room over, all looking at the innkeeper expectantly--and then at Hector, as well. Perhaps they’d been watching the whole time.
That was a lot of mouths to feed. The man probably felt like he had to prioritize customers or else it would affect his business. And in the long-term, that might very well result in even less food to go around. If any at all.
Either that, or he was simply scared of what all these foreigners would do if he didn’t feed them. Hector supposed that was just as likely.
Diego Redwater appeared suddenly in Hector’s peripheral vision and forced his porridge into the hands of another child.
Hector turned and saw several other Rainlords filing in behind the man.