Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Page 1857

((Triple Wednesday -- Page 2 of 3))
“I am, however, very curious to hear about these ‘guests’ who are currently staying at Warrenhold,” said the Queen.

Hector had been wondering when that would come up. He’d known that Madame Carthrace had told her about them.

He considered his next words carefully. He knew that he shouldn’t keep any of the important details from her, but it was still tough to know where to begin. He supposed he should just get the hardest part out of the way, though.

“...They’re fugitives from the Vanguard,” he told her.

For a moment, the Queen merely looked at him, her expression tightening. Then she exhaled and averted her gaze. “And here I was worried that they might be on the run from Abolish.” She rubbed her brow with a manicured hand. “This is far worse.”

“...Sorry,” was all Hector could think to say. He glanced at Lynn, who seemed more interested with the Queen’s reaction.

Helen took a long breath. “I assume you have a good reason for bringing them to Atreya?”

Hector had had plenty of time to prepare for that question. “They’re good and noble people,” he said. “The Vanguard was in the wrong. And, ah... Abolish attacked them, too. They were kind of desperate for help, so...”

The Queen nodded. “So you volunteered.” She still did not sound terribly pleased. “I also understand that they are... warriors, of some sort?”

Lynn was looking at him again, he noticed.

“...Yeah,” said Hector. “They’re... well, they’re incredibly powerful, actually.”

“Wait,” said Lynn, her one eye widening, “these aren’t the Rainlords you went to help, are they?”

Hector head reared back a little. “Er, yeah, they are. I... thought you guys already knew that.”

Helen’s eyes widened a little now, too. “You brought the Rainlords back from Sair with you?”

He gave a small nod. “Ah, well, about half of them, anyway. The other half was captured by Sanko.”

“You fought Sanko?!” said Lynn.

“What? No, I didn’t fight her. The other half of the Rainlords did. And, er, they lost.” He was little surprised that Lynn even recognized that name, but after a moment, he supposed he shouldn’t have been.

The Queen was rubbing her brow again. Suddenly, she looked a lot more exhausted than she had a minute ago.

“...Madame Carthrace didn’t tell you they were Rainlords?” said Hector.

“No, she did not,” said Helen.

That was surprising. When she’d said that she’d “told the Queen about their new houses guests,” Hector had just assumed that she’d informed her of everything she’d been learning about them while managing Warrenhold’s affairs.

Clearly, he should not have assumed that.

Bah. How amateurish of him. Not very lordly at all.

“How long do you intend to give them refuge at Warrenhold?” the Queen asked.

Now there was an important question. He exchanged looks with Garovel, wondering if he wanted to chime in here, but the reaper merely nodded at him.

“...As long as they need,” said Hector.

The Queen expression tightened again. “Indefinitely?”

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