Alistair was the one that would have to deal with their companions. He had to get Sten, Shale, Oghren, and Thor back to Bell’s camp and get it secured. They would have to get all of the tents down, all of the weapons, and supplies gathered. He had seen a couple of wagons that Sten and Shale could use to complete their tasks, finding horses to pull the wagons might be another matter. With any luck the horses at Eamon’s estate were still alive. He might have to send Zevran along tomorrow with the horses and wagons. He’d prefer Zevran stay with the women but that might not be possible. He had a few jobs for Teagan as well. Teagan or Eamon would be the only ones to handle those delicate matters.
Alistair had made it back down to the level below and paused before he knocked on Bell’s door.
“Gentlemen, please wait here for me.”
His royal guard took their positions around the door and saluted him. Maker’s breath, I’m going to hate this, thought Alistair. Being saluted and bowed at every minute of the day. I wonder if they will do that when I go to the privy, he almost smirked then he got control over his facial expressions.
Alistair knocked on the door.
Wynne and Irving both chimed at the same time “Enter,” Alistair opened the door and walked in to see Irving suturing up a wound on Wynne’s shoulder, firmly shutting the door behind him. “Maker’s breathe Wynne, why didn’t you tell me you were injured?”
“I’ll be as right as rain Alistair, don’t worry, it’s not deep.” Wynne chuckled. “You worry too much.”
“Given you’re like my adopted grandmother I have cause to worry.”
“Well don’t, I’ll be fine, just you wait and see, it’s not bad. If Zevran hadn’t come to my aid I probably wouldn’t be here.”
“Does that mean Zevran will get a look at your glorious bosom?”
“He most certainly will not get rewarded in that manner,” was Wynne’s snappy reply. “Really Alistair, how could you suggest such a thing?”
Alistair laughed, “For the pure enjoyment of hearing your reply.”
“That will be enough out of you young man.”
“Yes, well, time for some merriment, I think we all deserve it.”
“How will you reward him?”
“Well I might have a bottle of wine hidden away somewhere as a suitable reward.”
“I hope you don’t plan on sharing that bottle with him, he might get a peek at your glorious bosom if you do.”
“I can assure you, I can hold my liquor young man, better than you I’m sure.”
“I haven’t a doubt; I’ve not much experience being a Chantry raised boy.”
“Wynne will be fine, I can assure you, Your Highness.”
Alistair laughed, “I see she already is, Irving. And you, you’re alright, Irving.”
“Yes, your Highness, a few bumps and bruises, I shall be fine, thank you for asking.”
“How is Bell doing?” Alistair asked as he looked over and saw Bell still asleep on the bed.
“The wounds on her chest…they were deep, Irving and I managed to get her sutured up. It was a most difficult and awkward task. We’ve got her arrow wounds, lacerations, and contusions on her body cleaned and added balms to them. Setting the bones in her legs was probably the hardest part. She has been bathed, and all of her wounds dressed. She won’t be allowed on her legs for some time yet.”
“She was extremely lucky, she didn’t have an exit wound on her back as I first thought, and an emissary must have got her with a bolt of lightning in the back. Once we got her bathed this is what we discovered, I’d say it’s a second degree burn, it’s been cleaned and ice balm applied. She does have a punctured lung, and all of her ribs are broken along with the broken bones in her legs. We’re going to have to keep her as still as we possibly can because of her lung. I didn’t want to bind her ribs because of her lung. We’ve gotten more health potions down her and cast a few more healing spells on her.”
“I see you’ve continued with the swords as splints for her legs.”
“Yes, that was a handy tip Eamon gave me. I’ll keep that in mind for the next time I run across the same type of injury.”
Wynne paused glancing at Irving over her shoulder.
“Wynne, what’s wrong, tell me now?”
Alistair felt panic rising in his throat.
“Bell never came to from the pain in stitching her up Alistair and she should have, she has never moved or uttered a sound. She is deep within the fade and Irving and I are worried that she might be lost within. She might not be able to find her way back. If she doesn’t come to within a day or two, Irving or I will have to go within the fade to try to find her to bring her back.”
Alistair felt the blood drain out of his face.
“Wynne are you saying that Urthemiel might have a grip on her within the fade?”
“We don’t really know Your Highness; it is not unheard of that a warrior remains unconscious when having their wounds stitched. What is worrying is there is no sign of life in her eyes.”
“Irving, show me now.”
Wynne and Irving looked at each other.
Irving tied off the thread he was using to stitch Wynne up with and clipped the thread with his dagger. He calmly laid them down on the small table beside him. Getting up he walked over to the bed where Bell was lying, very gently he pulled Bell’s eyelids open. Alistair had come over and leaned over to look into Bell’s eyes. Her eyes were completely white, with a milky look to them. Just as when a recruit took the joining. There was no blue to her eyes at all. No color to them or any life or spark in them.
“Is it possible she has a concussion?” Alistair asked, even though he already knew the cause of her eyes being whited out.
“If she has a concussion, I’ve never seen signs of a patient having a concussion like this,” replied Irving.
“I checked her head all over Alistair thinking the same thing. I nor Irving could find a lump anywhere. If she has a concussion or a fractured skull, she might have blood in her eyes. She might also bleed from her nose or ears. She did have blood coming out of her mouth on the roof and this was due to her biting her tongue and the blood coming from her lung.”
“She bit, her own tongue?”
“I told all of you on the roof; whatever was happening to her was extremely painful for her.”
“Irving and I are certain it has to do with the Fade and Urthemiel.”
“Alistair, since I’ve traveled with you and Bell this past year, and I’ve been privy to Grey Warden secrets with healing both of you – along with Irving and I being Senior Enchanters to help prepare the joining ritual for the Wardens, I’m sure we can openly discuss this amongst ourselves. Have no fear that what we discuss will ever be known beyond the three of us.”
“Bell didn’t just kill the dragon physically; she destroyed it some other way didn’t she?”
“Well if you two aren’t the smart ones.” Alistair wise cracked.
“Stop being a smart ass young man.”
“Yes, of course, sorry Wynne.”
“Before I answer, I must have your sworn oaths, the knowledge I have to answer that question can’t ever be revealed to anyone. Even to other mages, nobody but the two of you can ever know. The First Warden will have me murdered if he learns the truth Wynne, that I provided this information. He will also order that you and Irving both be killed if you breathe a word of this knowledge to anyone or even hint that you know. You’ll never be able to even write a manuscript and leave it in the tower library for other mages after your deaths. This is the highest knowledge within our order.”
“Wynne and Irving looked at each other than at Alistair.” Both nodded and gave their oath of silence.
“On our lives Your Highness, we both swear.”
Lowering his voice Alistair answered them. “Yes, this is what Bell did; it would take more than a killing blow with a sword. A Grey Warden’s ability to kill an Archdemon is within each warden, using the taint within us that you hear us refer to when speaking of our abilities. What you and Irving witnessed wasn’t just magic, it was blood magic. The demon’s soul was destroyed through the taint within Bell’s own body. An Archdemon is an empty vessel, a Grey Warden is not. The two souls – one being tainted with evil surviving on the blood of others for it’s life and the other tainted having a real soul entwined with the taint is what kills the Archdemon. Two tainted souls that are different can’t inhabit the same body, the tainted blood that the dragon sought to live through powering it’s life with tainted blood, placed itself within Bell’s body seeking her taint, and her soul destroyed the dragon’s tainted soul.”
“To become Grey Wardens, we drink darkspawn blood; we pay a heavy price to become what we are. It’s a blood magic ritual Wynne, which you and Irving will be aware of. The Archdemon’s soul was seeking another tainted vessel to continue to live. If anyone else other than a Grey Warden delivers the killing blow the Archdemon’s corrupted soul will just jump to the next darkspawn and transform back into a dragon. This is why it took nearly ninety years for the first blight to end; nobody knew how to kill Dumat. How the first Wardens found the secret is a mystery to me; I don’t have the knowledge on how they discovered the blood ritual. The Archdemon was seeking that taint when it’s soul combined with Bell’s. The Archdemon was drawn to the nearest tainted vessel to feed on the blood and renew its dragon form and life force as it was being brought down and killed. Warden’s don’t prolong their lives with blood magic, like an Archdemon will do.”
“When a new warden recruit survives the joining they become immune to the effects of the taint for years by taking the darkspawn blood into their bodies; but, the taint eventually destroys our bodies from within, destroying our minds and bodies. When this occurs is when most Wardens go to their callings in the deep roads.”
“This whole year, both of us have been hearing the song the dragon sings to the darkspawn to awaken it and instruct the horde, we also suffer from horrible nightmares of the darkspawn, we see and hear them in our dreams. The tainted blood within our bodies is how we can sense darkspawn. This is how Duncan, and the other Wardens that died at Ostagar knew this was a true blight, all of us heard the dragon singing.”
“This is how we knew they were coming and told of all of you to get ready for a battle when encountering them on roads. When the darkspawn attacked our camp, they knew Wardens where in the camp, that is how they found all of us. The darkspawn had tracked Bell and I back to camp. Wardens can also sense each other through the taint.”
“Most people don’t survive the joining because darkspawn blood is poisoned, or tainted if you will. Bell’s eye changing to a white milky color happens when a warden survives the ritual, our eyes change for a time. If her eyes don’t return to normal, then I need to know right away, give it a day or two for them to change back. She might come down with a very high fever Wynne. Cold compresses will have to be used, this also happened to her with her joining at Ostagar. Duncan and I both were afraid we’d lose her to the fever. She can experience delirium with the high fever. It will take more than just you to handle her and control her Wynne. During this time, her body will recharge if you will and she will have unlimited strength even for a woman. We didn’t kill all of those ogres with just our wills. You have to let me know right away if this starts happening. It will take Sten and me both to handle her.”
“As Grey Wardens we will be forever entwined through the blood with darkspawn, we are joined to them through the tainted blood; this is why the ceremony to become a Grey Warden is called the joining. We also die early because of the taint, most get thirty years if they are lucky. If the taint progresses faster, than a Warden has to go to their calling in the deep roads sooner rather than later. The taint does offer our bodies overwhelming stamina, strength, and faster healing and of course our large appetite which you are aware of Wynne.”
“This is also why Bell and I might not be able to have children. If we do have children, they might be born with the taint already in them. This is the reason I didn’t want to become King. I don’t fully know if I’ll ever sire an heir for the Kingdom. Nobody can know this, not even Eamon. Every Grey Warden that I ever knew had children before their joining, not after.”
“This is why you truly ended your relationship?” Wynne asked.
“Yes, Wynne, I love her and I always will; I didn’t have a choice. I had to give her up for this reason. I wouldn’t let her go otherwise. If I was certain she could give me a child and one that wasn’t tainted, I wouldn’t have ended our relationship. When I’m officially made King, I have a duty to fulfill, you know this Wynne.”
“She is very hurt over you Alistair; I don’t need to tell you this.”
“I know Wynne. This is the way it has to be and I wish it weren’t so. I don’t know if I’ll be able to live without her, it will take all of my will but I have no choice as King.”
“Then you do the honorable thing Alistair and keep your distance from her, don’t prolong your relationship, it will just hurt her further.”
“I’ve already made that decision, I want us to remain close friends Wynne, and I don’t want to lose her in that way.”
“You may not have a choice Alistair, if she decides to completely withdraw from you, you will have to allow her time and distance to get over your relationship and she may decide that she can’t be that friend and you’ll have to accept her choice.”
Alistair nodded grimly.
“Alistair what needs to be done in case her eyes don’t return to normal?”
Alistair closed his eyes and pain slashed across his face before answering.
“I will have to end her life Wynne, the taint will have destroyed her mind if the fever isn’t keep under control. I will have to be the one, I’m a fellow Warden, and she is my sister within the order, it’s my duty.”
“No Alistair, say this isn’t so.”
“I’m sorry Wynne, it has to be. If she develops a fever you have to send for me immediately, since I’m the only other Warden in Ferelden, we will have to fight her fever with every bit of knowledge that we have in case she comes down with one. The taint rolls off of us in waves when in battle and it raises our temperature, with a fever its worse, it can damage our brains.”
Irving gripped Wynne’s shoulders for comfort at this news.
“As you say” was Wynne’s only reply to this sorry bit of news.
“Alistair, I had no idea that the Wardens use blood magic. As mages we knew the joining ritual was dangerous, we never knew to what degree or why, but I’m sure Irving and I both suspected its use.”
“The Circle has manuscripts describing Warden abilities, it has been theorized that blood magic was used but never confirmed, this could be why the Chantry has never gone after the Wardens, they don’t have the proof,” stated Irving.
“This is why our order is a secret order. If the Chantry ever found out Wardens use blood magic, I’d hate to think what they might do. It’s a necessary evil.”
“If the Grand Cleric had a vote in the Landsmeet, I’m not sure that she would have voted for us during the Landsmeet. She was against Duncan recruiting me into the Wardens. Duncan had to conscript me, and he conscripted Bell from her dying father. Was she against this because I’m Maric’s son or she knew the joining ritual is actually a blood ritual or both? I’d doubt she’d be open for discussion on either topic, and we couldn’t trust her anyway.”
“The Chantry would hunt all Wardens down and kill all of them, declaring all of you as apostates and supporters of apostates,” replied Irving. They wouldn’t hesitate with the use of blood magic being used. There are two old gods yet to rise,” said Irving.
“Yes” replied Alistair, “and only Wardens will be able to kill the remaining Archdemons.”
“It takes massive armies at the backs of Grey Wardens for them to even get close to an Archdemon to kill the corrupted dragon. Our order has to be maintained for the sake of all humanity. If not, all races are doomed if the Warden’s ever fail in their duty. Wardens must remain vigilant until the last old god has risen, and then is slain, and whatever happens after that is anyone’s guess.”
“Alistair, Wardens don’t use any other blood magic do they?”
“No Wynne, this is all the blood magic that they use that I’m aware of, besides allowing apostate mages into the order. We have to have mages to fight darkspawn, when they have their own powerful mages and emissaries. If it wasn’t for you and Morrigan, I doubt Bell and I would have survived this whole ordeal.”
“All of us have fought powerful emissaries at Ostagar, and battling the darkspawn in general. The Divine in Orlais and even our own Grand Cleric, they have to know darkspawn have their own mages. They’d be fools to declare warden’s outlaws; they really wouldn’t do this would they?”
“You know as well as I do that we’ve run into darkspawn mages using blood magic and necromancy when we went back to Ostagar. I really don’t know which is worse, a darkspawn mage or a blood mage. This is why Duncan recruited me into the Grey Wardens because I’ve been trained as a Templar and I was days away from taking my final vows. He felt my training could be used against darkspawn mages.”
“I don’t think the Chantry should ever learn about the Wardens using blood magic, who knows how they would react,” said Irving.
“Your Highness, you were a Templar would they do this?”
“I can see them trying to outlaw the Grey Wardens if they ever found out; I wouldn’t put it past them.”
“Maker’s breath,” said Wynne.
“Alistair is there anything else I need to be aware of in caring for Bell?”
“She is likely to begin vomiting as well, Wynne.”
“If she doesn’t come to in a few days, then we’ll decide what to do then about you or Irving entering the fade. Let me guess, if you have to do this then I get to be that Templar?”
“I’m afraid so Alistair, there would be nobody else that we could trust.”
“Agreed, it would be hard to explain this to the Grand Cleric and Greagoir on why we would need a Templar, in case this has to been done, we can’t tell them the truth,” said Irving.
“The only reason I told both of you this information is so you know how to help Bell heal.” If it wasn’t for that I would never have told you. Also, be aware that Wardens from Orlais are on the way and we will need to have our stories straight and neither of you know any inside information about the order, it will be your lives if you do.”
“We understand Alistair.”
“Alright then, I guess that is settled.”
“Oh, the reason I’m here…Irving we need you on the roof if you’re done here. I must have a meeting with the Grand Cleric, Sir Greagoir, and you. It’s rather important. We have several tasks before us and I will need Templars and Mages. What has to be done, I have to have the Grand Cleric’s permission.”
“Well that sounds rather ominous,” replied Irving.
“Nothing that bad, I promise I’ll explain once we get back on the roof and everyone is assembled.”
“As you say, Your Highness.”
“Irving, I need you to gather a few extra buckets if you can find them, if you need help please get Leliana or Zevran to help you search and bring them along with you. I have a task that only you and I can handle, we’ll need to distract Greagoir as we perform this task because only you and I can do this; me being a Grey Warden and you being the First Enchanter. The Grand Cleric mustn’t know our agenda, so we’ll have to come up with a plan on that as well. So put your thinking caps on. You’ll also need lyrium and I think Bell had plenty of lyrium for her mages use so fill your pockets, we will need as much as you can carry.”
“This task is what exactly?”
“You and I have to collect as much blood as we can from the Archdemon and it has to be preserved in phylacteries along with lyrium. Bell and I will need to start rebuilding the Grey Wardens here in Ferelden and we’ll need the blood from the Archdemon and other darkspawn for the joining. Nobody can know that this has to be collected.”
“Wynne, where are the rest of our companions?”
“Leliana and Zevran are still bringing supplies up from the kitchens that they found, as you can see they did find three braziers for us to start fires to heat water and our rooms for tonight, they have also found some food items to make a light supper for all of us. I think Sten, Oghren, Shale, and Thor are in the next room. Oghren will probably be going on a hunt for a keg before long.”
“Wynne, will you please send all of them to me on the roof? I have missions for all of them. Have Leliana go over with you on what she was going to cook and if you can get a stew or some type of soup started that would be grand, we’ve got a lot of people to feed. Please make sure Sten, Oghren, and Thor have had something to eat and make sure their wounds have been attended too, and they are all on the mend before sending them to me.”
“Also, inform Leliana and Zevran they need to help Irving find buckets and bring them along, tell them to bring as many buckets as they can find, also tell them – those buckets have to remain hidden until I tell them to bring them up, hide them somewhere near the main entrance of the roof.”
“Of course Alistair, I’ll get them all patched up and sent on their way with your instructions.”
Alistair came over and kissed Wynne on the check, “thank you almost grandmother.”
“You’re welcome child.”
Alistair walked back over to Bell and bent down and gently placed his hand on her forehead checking for a fever. No fever for now, that was good; likely the fever will show up later in the night.
As he started to leave, “one more thing, I’m going to leave two of my guards just outside the door, with our companions off on errands, I don’t want you and Bell left unprotected, so don’t be frightened, it’s just a precaution.”
“Let me guess, because of Anora?”
“I’ll check back later Wynne.”
“Irving I’ll see you in a little bit?”
“Yes, Your Highness.”
Alistair nodded, and then left the room closing the door behind him.
“Allen, I need two of my royal guards to stay here and guard the Warden Commander and her mages. See to it that nobody gets in or out of this room, unless you clear it with Enchantress Wynne, the commander’s healer inside.”
“Yes your Highness.”
Alistair followed by his other guards headed back to the roof.
Irving made sure Alistair was gone before he spoke.
“Wynne, shouldn’t we tell His Highness that the Commander is pregnant?”
“No Irving, I don’t think we should. If she means for him to know, then she will be the one to tell him.”
“Wynne, I don’t agree.”
“I know you don’t Irving, but what you don’t know is these babies may not be Alistair’s, the Commander was molested during their capture at the hands of Loghain’s soldiers at Fort Drakon. I gave her the tea for the abortive and apparently it didn’t work.”
“Its possible she became pregnant after that incident by His Highness as well.”
“Yes, this is possible, but it’s still up to her to tell him. It’s really none of our business Irving.”
“She could be carrying the heirs to the throne, he should know Wynne.”
“No Irving, I’m firm on this, she might not know who the father is, and this is why it has to be up to her to tell him.”
“Are you sure Wynne that you don’t have a biased opinion given what happened to us and our son?”
“You promised we’d never speak of that. What happened to us was different Irving, we are mages, and we didn’t have a choice or say in what happened to our son, because of the Chantry.”
“Trust me Irving, Bellavalia is a good honest person, if she feels that Alistair has a right to know especially if she is certain he is the father then she will tell him. She might make Alistair suffer for a bit in the manner in which he has treated her; she will tell him eventually and I hope I’m around to watch.”
“In all honesty Irving I do have a biased opinion, if Alistair learns of her pregnancy, and he still doesn’t want to marry her, I’ll not allow her children to be torn from her grasp as our son was from mine, this way she will at least have time with them, time that I never had with our son.”
“Alistair becoming King will give him the right to do that to her, just take her children from her; if Alistair was just the bastard son of King Maric, the former Templar, and Grey Warden it would be Bellavalia’s say – her being the noble; Alistair has been given his father’s throne and he is the highest ruler and noble in the land, not Bellavalia. This is why I want no part of this Irving. I couldn’t live with myself doing that to another woman, even though I think of Alistair as my own adopted son. We can’t get in the middle of this Irving, but if questioned we can’t lie either.”
“I’m not fully certain Alistair is being honest with himself on why he actually set her aside. You know as I do Irving that a lot of men can’t handle that type of knowledge…what can happen to a woman, especially if the man wasn’t able to protect the woman. I think Alistair gave his best and tried to protect her but he was outnumbered, he was a bloody mess when they got back to Eamon’s estate after their escape. This is the last thing I would have expected from him having this type of attitude; he is a good man in his heart.”
“You have to understand the position he is in Wynne, if they aren’t his children he can’t take the risk, he would have to be certain they are his children. He is going to be King, he has to make certain his children are legal heirs.”
“I do understand Irving. Alistair has more at his disposal to make that determination in knowing if they are his. All we’d need is some their blood, you and I both know that.”
“Yes, but we can’t take the blood from the babies for the scrying without the Commanders consent and its better that the children are born first. Does the commander know that she is pregnant, she isn’t very far along, and would you say a month or six weeks? Also would the Landsmeet and nobles acknowledge them as legal heirs if they are his children?”
“Hmm, the time frame for the events happening at Fort Drakon and their last time together spent at camp is too close to really determine who the fathers really are. Their last time together spent at camp was the night before the Landsmeet on Wintersend. Alistair could be the father, but so could one of those guards from the fort, she never said if it was more than one only that it had happened. I don’t know if the abortive worked or if she had her monthly courses in-between. I honestly don’t know, and I don’t know if the nobles would acknowledge them, they are a fickle loot. I’d say she is a month up to six weeks no more than that, so I agree with you. She hasn’t said anything to me or to anyone else that I’m aware of.”
“Wynne, she may decide to abort when she realizes, that would have to be done in secret and you and I both know it, the Chantry could bring her up on charges if they ever found out.”
“Irving this is horrible what is happening.”
“I know Wynne, but there is nothing we can do about it.”
“Eamon probably is the reason behind their breakup and he would be right in advising Alistair that he had to end their relationship.”
“I don’t agree with that Irving.”
“I know you don’t; but, you have to try to view this from a man’s point-of-view and especially from Alistair’s position.”
“Alistair would give his life protecting her and he very nearly died over the beating he took in Fort Drakon. Its a wonder both of them survived and they escaped when they did. Morrigan didn’t have the healing skills that you and I have, so she couldn’t heal either of them to the degree that they both needed when her and Leliana found them.”
“I’d like to know how Eamon knew what happened to her, I don’t think Alistair would have betrayed her confidence even with Eamon, but I could be wrong.”
“Their love will be a tale for the ages Irving, mark my words, the bards will sing of it for centuries to come, even though it will be filled with sadness and loss for both of them; their love it seems is to be bittersweet. I tried to warn her on their relationship Irving.”
“Its young love and youth Wynne, you can’t stop it.”
“You’re such a romantic old fool Irving,” Wynne said as she gently pinched Irving’s cheek.
“We paid a price for our love in our youths as well Wynne, something neither of us has ever gotten over.” Irving took Wynne’s hand and gently kissed it.
“Yes we did and we have remained close friends. I hope this happens with Alistair and Bellavalia.”
“Speaking of the apostate, she is gone and you are certain?”
“Hmm, yes, I believe that she has left and why she would leave so soon after the battle makes me wonder what she is up too. I don’t have a strong sense of her magic anymore; you haven’t picked up her magic either?”
“No my dear, not since we were all on the roof, she must have come to before any of us and left, with all of the Templars walking around and not being a mage from the Circle of Magi, she’d need to get out of the city quickly. The Templars wouldn’t hesitate in taking her into custody if they find her. She would run to get away from them and quickly, it wouldn’t matter that she was part of your war party.”
“I don’t know Irving, why she would run so soon without checking to make sure Bell was alright, they had become friends? Irving during our journey of gathering all of the armies, as a group we were all in and out of Denerim all the time, right under Loghain and Howe’s noses. The Templars had to see Morrigan with us.”
“I do know something happened between Morrigan, Bell, and Alistair our last night at Redcliffe. I could feel magic being used, but I could never find the source. Morrigan was the only other mage in the castle except for Connor, I’m sure she was using blood magic and the spell was being hidden from me. I’m uneasy on what this means Irving.”
“If it’s the Maker’s will, we’ll learn in time Wynne, if something ominous is under foot from the apostate it will be revealed.”
“I guess you’re right Irving.”
“We’re in agreement then over our new-found knowledge?”
“Of course my dear, we’re in agreement, mums the word.”
“Thank you Irving,”
“Come my dear, let’s get a bandage on that shoulder of yours, and let us be about the King’s business.”