“Captain Valis, see to the man. Your fate and his are now intertwined. I do not know if that is a blessing or curse.” Saing snarled.
“Yes, my lord and thank you.” Valis turned on heel and almost ran from the room.
Saing turned his attention to the scroll. Breaking the seals in a specified order, his own last, he begins to read.
Things are not as they seem. My flight from Gothex has not been in vain. P’ jai’ us is no more. Their powers failed and their wizards were smashed by Commander Tintar’s forces. Just as the sun was rising, word came of a more ominous threat. Dar Benedict is missing in the south. His agents report that there are traitors in the Court. Gregor, Azon, Augustus seek to move against the King. Lady de’ Gruse hired an assassin to kill the King and Saing. They are all in league together.
I expect war within the coming months. I will work to secure Benedict’s safety and root out any other traitors in our midst. I do not know when I shall return to my beloved Gothex, but I intend to send word.
Your faithful servant,
“Nine years ago, he knew? Nine years!” Saing’s rage boiled over. “That bastard, nine years. The loss, the betrayals…so much gone now.” Gripping the edge of the table, Saing flips the massive oak war table onto its face, maps fly everywhere.
Almost yelling, the baron says, “Commander Kreal, take your Gloomwalkers and flank the SouthGate barracks. No one is to know this man is alive. As soon as he can travel, bring him to me!”
Kreal, a hulk of a man, steps from the recess that he had been standing in. The timbers of the room shuttered as he responds “As you wish my lord.”
As Kreal passes through the doorway into the hall, eight massive warriors materialize out of the mists and shadows. As the nine men march to the SouthGate, denizens go into buildings and pull closed their shutters. The Gloomwalkers’ reputation precedes them like a faint whiff of death or the fleeting moment of a nightmare. As they approach the SouthGate barracks, the troopers fan out in a protective barrier. Assuming their posts, the nine soldiers disappear, in the blink of an eye.
Inside the barracks, Valis paces back and forth while looking at the man lying on the stretcher. So near to death, Valis thinks Whatever did he do to earn the, what’s the word…admiration, is the Baron capable of admiring someone? Respect? Clearly, this man is important to Saing. What did he mean 'our fates were now tied?'
The cleric interrupts Valis’ thoughts, “Sergeant, what troubles you? This traveler has come a very long way and is not yet dead. He may still be revived.”
“Well the Baron very much wants to speak to him, so it’s in his best interest to live.”