“Well, no, strategic marriages are not uncommon, exactly, but they are not nearly as common as they used to be, either. And everyone knows those two can’t stand each other. They have been enemies for years, for all that their families are so close, and they grew up side by side. They argued all through their growing up years and rumor has it they haven’t stopped arguing since.”
“But they work together regularly?” the friend questioned.
“Oh yes, but that is different. They have worked together for years, but if you ask me, it will be a miracle if they can manage to not kill each other within the first month of living together! Living together is very different from working together, you know.”
“Even as indifferent as Doran is to you, he won’t be able to help noticing you dressed like this,” Mavis enthused.
“Then you don’t know Doran, dear sister of mine. He’ll be as cool and unconcerned as I am.”
“You can say that again,” Belli fumed, “He is such a…a… block of ice!”
Jaris frowned, put his head on one side and looked her over carefully. When was the last time you had a full night’s sleep?
Johari thought hard, "I think it was a couple days before the riots started,” she replied finally. "Since then, it’s been a couple hours here and there for Mom and me both."
Jaris looked at Taruba, "How much longer until you drug her and thus force her to sleep for longer than a couple hours?"
The Lassi's eyes twinkled, "I can’t very well tell you that in front of her now can I sir?”
Jaris laughed, "That you can’t."
"You should talk," Johari turned on him, "How long has it been since you slept a full night's worth?"
Oath of Loyalty
Johari smacked him on the shoulder. "With the amount of nonsense you talk, Jaris Landison, it astonishes me that there is even any room in your brain for the serious thoughts I hear from you once every five years."
"The human brain has an amazing capacity for storage," he gallantly bowed to her.
"Every five years?" Jiffrey said incredulously. "I would have said every ten years."
Jaris punched his arm.
Oath of Loyalty
A cloaked figure stepped forward from behind Kaduna. She reached a hand up and her hood dropped.
Itimburi is definitely paler now, Johari thought with satisfaction.
Oath of Loyalty
Maron’s eyes were riveted, not to the black alacorn, but to his rider, a young woman dressed the same way the other Valkyrs were. She sat her mount with a wild, free grace that was almost as familiar to his eyes as the walls of Corbenic itself. She pulled her mount up near the foot of the steps and the other Valkyrs halted too. The leader’s eyes lifted to the people on the steps, instinctively finding the Anax and Anessa and locking eyes with them.
Seren had returned.
“Then, Lord Llewellyn, stand forth,” Arimathe stepped back and bent his head toward Berenike.
Berenike rose from her throne and stood forward. Llewellyn stepped up onto the dais and knelt at her feet. She unsheathed the sword that hung at her side. Lightly, with the flat of the blade, she tapped him, first on his right shoulder and then on his left. “Then, Llewellyn, by the authority given me as Regina of Corbenic, I dub thee Sir Llewellyn, Knight of the Realm. Fulfill your oath and may the blessings of the Sovereign Dominus be upon you!”
“I heard from a servant who had worked for the family for a time that the woman tried to kill the child before her own death,” Bayses said.
The corners of Arimathe’s mouth lifted wryly, “Those of the blood of Arthur will do everything in their power to prevent Mordred’s descendants from ever sitting upon the throne of Arthur again.”
Miss Melody Muffin