I was stuffed after eating a large portion of Wynne’s chicken and dumplings, her dish had been delicious and filling and I would never have guessed that a circle mage could be such a good cook. I had known that Morrigan and Leliana were glad that she helped in the cooking around the campfire, even though Morrigan would never admit such a thing. Zevran wasn’t a bad campfire cook either. That made five of us and we five had keep Alistair away from the cooking pot as much as possible while on the road. Alistair’s cooking had been so bad that even Thor wouldn’t eat it. That was saying something because Thor ate about anything, except Alistair’s cooking.
I was waiting on Wynne to bring me some cookies and tea that Sten had found in the market today. Leave it to Sten to find the sweets in the market. I was also expecting Keeper Lanaya; Kristoff was on his way down to escort her to my room.
I hadn’t been entirely truthful with Alistair; I had a very important reason for asking to speak with her. Hopefully she could aid me. I hoped she wouldn’t deny me – what I needed from the Dalish. I’m sure I’d have to do something in exchange for her helping me. I wouldn’t know unless I asked. Something Alistair had said on the road just one of his many rambling comments had caught my attention even though I hadn’t responded at the time – it had stuck in my mind. I didn’t know if she would be truthful with me because I was sure what I suspected the Dalish didn’t want the Shems to know.
In the meantime while waiting for everyone I had been sitting in bed for the past several hours reading one of Wynne’s books. The one on dragon blood potions that I had found for her and she had been delighted that I’d found a copy. I was amazed at all the information and recipes in the book. It brought to my mind the blood potion of Averness that I had drunk at Warden’s Keep. I never realized how powerful the blood of a dragon was. Had Averness drank more blood of an Arch Demon than the regular joining or did he drink dragon blood to extend his life? I’d killed him so I had no way of asking him now.
All of those books on dragons at our home at Highever, and not a one mentioned the use of dragon blood. Yet, mages seemed to know. It made me wonder what other discoveries others had found for using the blood of dragons. The only problem in gaining dragon blood you had to get it before the dragon died. A very difficult task to accomplish since a dragon wasn’t going to just allow it’s blood to be taken. When a person fought a dragon it was a fight to the death, even fighting drakes and yearlings. You weren’t just going to get the blood and just walk away.
Yet the blood cult in Haven seemed to have a special communication or arrangement with the High Dragon there; the dragon allowed the cultist to take it’s blood and for them to drink it in their ceremonies in exchange for the cultist to guard and protect the dragon’s eggs – her off spring. It was a topic I was curious about, since drinking the blood would make warriors a Reaver. Sten had opted and so had Oghren. Alistair had flat out refused and I wasn’t surprised. I remembered when we had fought the High Dragon near Haven, that dragon had zoomed in on Wynne. We all had a terrible time keeping that Dragon off of Wynne. Alistair, Sten, and I had been hacking away and yet the dragon continued to focus right on Wynne and not the warriors whacking her with swords. It was more like a battle between Wynne and the High Dragon and the rest of us were just pests to be sweep aside. The same thing happened when fighting Flemeth when she changed into her dragon form. She had gone right for Wynne. My conclusions on both battles…Morrigan had said the art of shape shifting was a form of possession and magic that was in the world before the chantry had even been formed. I wondered if both dragons had zeroed in on Wynne because they were afraid she might possess them. Or they feared the mage more so than the rest of us? It was an interesting question and one only a mage could answer, mages from that school of magic which would be rare to find, most of them being apostates. I was so lost in my whimsical musings I almost forgot to tell the person knocking at my door to come in. I knew it had to be Kristoff with the Keeper. Wynne would have just come right on in.
“Commander, Keeper Lanaya is here to see you.”
“Allow her in Kristoff.”
We smiled at one another as she walked in. It was good to see her again. She was so easy to talk with. She didn’t hold the prejudice that all Dalish did toward a Shem like me. I guess it was due to her being among the Shem when she was little; she had originally been born a City Elf.
“It is very good to see you again, Warden.”
“It is wonderful to see you again too Keeper.”
“Please have a seat; I think Wynne will be bringing us some tea and cookies shortly.” I had motioned to the stool next to my bed and she sat down, placing her staff on the floor beside her.
“Did you tell them your mage’s staff was a walking stick?”
“I did.” She snorted with laughter.
I smiled at her. “They wouldn’t have let you in if they knew it was a weapon.”
The King warned of that fact and that is what I was to say when coming to the gate to be allowed in here to see you.
“I haven’t had cookies in a very long time; it will be a delight to have such a treat.”
I didn’t say anything, yet the thought filled my head how privileged we had been at Highever never wanting for the simple pleasures of life such as cookies. Meeting the City Elves, the Dalish elves, and Sten had opened my eyes to different views of the world and even meeting Morrigan. How so many in the kingdom had been barely getting by before the blight even started. This is not something I would have thought Cailan would have allowed. He had always seemed interested in helping the poor of his country. I’d been gone from Ferelden for two years and I didn’t recall things being this bad before I left to go to school in Orlais. I know that Alistair had noticed it too.
Before I could reply to her Wynne came in. She was carrying a small tray, with hot steaming mugs of tea and a small plate of drop sugar cookies. The cookies were soft in the middle and golden brown on the edges, just like Nan used to make. The aroma of the sugar and butter in them was pure heaven.
There was a twinkle of anticipation in the Keeper’s eyes as she smelled the aroma of the cookies.
Wynne set the tray down on the desk on the other side of the room. She brought two hot steaming mugs of tea to both of us. “I hope this is sweet enough for you Keeper; we’re low on sugar at the moment and not much is available in the city.”
“We use wild honey in our tea.” “I haven’t had tea with sugar since I was a small child.”
She tentatively took a sip of her tea.
“This will do, thank you.”
Wynne went back to the desk and she brought the plate of cookies and offered them to Lanaya. The Keeper inhaled deeply of the aroma. She scooped up a couple of cookies and Wynne handed her a small cloth napkin for her to lay them in her lap.
Lanaya bit into one and she closed her eyes and was in utter bliss as she savored the flavor of the cookies. Wynne and I both watched the pure pleasure that crossed her face. It was good to see someone just like Sten who could gain that look of bliss from just a cookie. Sten had never had a cookie or any such sweet baked goods in his life before coming to Ferelden. I think we’d been to every bake shop in Ferelden, Orzammar too if I remembered correctly. Wynne and I looked at each other and we both smiled. The keeper finished her cookie slowly wanting to savor the very last crumb. Wynne had left the room and went back to the card game they were all enjoying out in the main hall; I was out of sorts because I was out there cheating Zevran out of more gold.
“The Dalish don’t have sweets?”
“Oh yes that, my joy over the cookies.” “With us trying to fight the werewolves, our need of constantly making our salves and healing potions, and then the blight ravaging the land, we really haven’t had the time or inclination to bake something that would offer joy.” “Recently, we have not the time for such things.” “Sweets are something the Dalish only make for special occasions or feast days of our God’s.” “Other occasions would be a wedding, a birth, a new warrior gaining his hunter status, or if something rare is found in the forest that we forage and came across an ingredient that can be used in baking, we would bake the sweets and be thankful for our ancestors guiding us to such a harvest.”
I sipped my tea in companionable silence with the Keeper. It was always so cold here in Ferelden and when one had a hot beverage one tended to get it down instead of talking. The tea was good and slightly sweet but not overly so. I preferred cream in mine and I was guessing perishables inside the city were most likely to be on short supply if the merchant’s ships didn’t start arriving sooner in the harbor.
Zev had told me many of them were still out at sea just off the shore of Ferelden, still unsure if landing on the shores would result in the deaths of the ship’s crew. Some had come ashore but more needed to arrive bringing trade goods. Ferelden was going to be in short supply of all manner of things. Fergus and I both would need to find ways to augment supplies for Highever, the city estate and the Vigil. Alistair had the bigger worry, since he would take the heat of not doing something about the coming famine if grain and goods were not brought in from other countries. They would need to trade with the Dalish and Orlais even, I was sure goods with Orlais would have to be done on the sly more so than any other backwoods dealing. I still had my contacts in Orlais, the only problem now, Fergus and I would have to share. Many of Loghain’s age would still not accept trade with Orlais, so I was fairly certain it would be voted down in the Landsmeet. Smuggling was going to be booming along the shores of Ferelden for some time to come. I had a funny feeling I was going to get right in the middle of it too when I went North. I didn’t want to think about that right now.
The Keeper and I finished our tea; the tea had left a nice warm feeling inside and warmed both of us up. It got damp and chilly inside this fort. The stone of the fortress holding in the damp and chill.
“I must thank you for taking such good care of the Dalish Commander of the Dalish Army that I sent to you, who stayed in your camp.” “He told me he was treated with respect and kindness from all of your companions, especially your dog. “
“Thor has always been a good judge of character and I’m sure the Commander of the Dalish army was given special consideration when he played fetch with Thor all the time.” “They both seemed to enjoy the game.” “I was grateful to him for showing Thor so much attention.” “It’s not always good for a Mabari war dog to sit idle all the time they seem to get into mischief when they are bored.”
“I noticed when we arrived in the woods near your encampment that none of you had any mabari war dogs, was or is there a reason for this?”
“Most of the shems wouldn’t sell them to us or allow any of our people near them to see if they would imprint on an elf.”
“Oh” I said.
“I know my Commander was taken with your dog, but he said when you arrived back at camp the dog wouldn’t leave your side or hardly pay attention to anyone else.”
“Yes, that is what imprinting does, when I am near, he will only listen to me and he guards me.” “I’m his mistress until his death or mine.” “When they imprint it is for life.”
“How long has he been with you?”
“Thor has been with me most of my life, since I was a small child.” “My father allowed me near to see the mabari puppies; they had not yet weaned from their mother but soon would be, I think I was around five or six, he imprinted when he was a puppy and I was for all intents – was a puppy just as he was.” “He followed my scent and came to my room in the night.” “I let him inside my room and my parents found him the next day sleeping right beside me.” “My father and mother were both delighted that he had imprinted to me being their only daughter.” “My father always worried that something would happened to me and he knew if Thor was near me then he would raise an alarm alerting the castle guards.” “From that morning forward my father always called me Pup.”
The Keeper smiled at my father’s nickname for me.
“He helped you fight the darkspawn?”
“Yes, he is a war dog, which means he has been trained in combat since he was puppy.” “He can pull a full-size man or darkspawn down and tear their throats out before they even think of defending themselves.” “Thor saved all of our lives more than once in our task to defend against the blight.” “I’m very blessed to have him.” “He even fought an ogre at Ostagar; he helped save His Highnesses life and mine.”
“That’s very impressive.”
“Yes, he is very special.”
“Alistair err I mean His Highness said you wanted to speak with me.”
“What can I do for you Keeper?”
“I just wanted to say thank you for saving all of Ferelden from the blight and also giving my people the chance to gain respect from the humans in joining you in the battle.” “I’m hearing good things and respect for my people.” “I’m grateful.” “I’m especially grateful to you for stopping the horror that was going on here in the Elven Alienage, my people being sold into slavery.” “I was saddened deeply that such a thing happened here in Denerim.” She had placed her hand on her chest and closed her eyes with the pain of knowing such a thing.
“Many here have not seen a healer in many years and I was glad to help the City Elves here.” “It was hard at first to get them to accept my healing, they were frightened to accept.”
“Yes, I imagine their reluctance came from what happened with the slavers, it will be hard for them to trust.”
“It was hard for them to accept my aid until His Highness told them I was here to help them.”
“Yes, I was not happy in finding what I discovered in the Alienage.” “Ferelden is one of the few nations in Thedas that does not allow slaves nor selling people into slavery, there is a reason and it’s because of Ferelden’s being held in slavery when Orlais took over this country eighty years ago.” “My parent’s would never allow such things on our land up north.” “My father would have put a stop to it immediately.” “I felt duty bound to do the same.” “I can’t believe the queen allowed it.”
“She has not been kind in dealing with our clans.” “I’m looking forward to seeing how King Alistair will do.”
I had figured as much and I had my fingers crossed Lanaya would help me against Anora.
“King Alistair will consider all peoples of Ferelden in his rulings; he is a good and honest man.”
“He seemed willing to help us when all of you came to our camp and he seemed concerned for our plight.”
“Yes, this is the type of man that he is.”
“Such things have always happened to the Elves, be they Dalish or City elf.” “My people are fully aware of what goes on, but the manner in how it was done.” She was gravely troubled.
I knew how she felt, the elves had been tricked that a plague was causing them to be sick when it was Trevinter slavers making them sick to take them away into bondage, even small children. The whole deed had been pure evil, the people in the Alienage being infested with the walking bomb spell to make them sick. What had been so astounding was that an elf was also involved with placing her own people into slavery; she had been a true Trevinter. I had despised her on the spot. I made that point to her and she flat out didn’t care. I couldn’t believe it at the time. I was very glad when Zevran and I killed her. Zevran had a finely crafted bow from her equipment which he was very pleased to have. Zevran had taken great pleasure in killing her also. He knew what it was like being sold into slavery as a small child. The fury on his face was something I’d never forget.
“You are from the great house of Highever, the daughter of the Lord and Lady there.”
I inhaled slowly and exhaled slowly.
“Yes, but my parents are gone to the Maker now and my brother is the new Lord.”
“I understand a great tragedy happened there, which took your parent’s lives and this is how you became a Grey Warden.”
“We have both suffered through similar tragedy.”
“Yes we have, very similar.”
She and I were silent for a few minutes as we both remembered. Howe killing my parents and the merchant caravan her parents had been servants too and they had come under attack and all except for Lanaya were butchered before her and she had been dragged off with her attackers, until she had been rescued. She had also suffered at her attackers hands.
“I’ve heard it said that many Elves in Highever were happy there, and their living conditions in Highever were not like here.”
“Yes, my father when he became Teyrn had the old Alienage at Highever torn down and a new one was built after the war because most of it had been destroyed, and unlike here in Denerim our Alienage was of large stone buildings and was only two stories high with shorter walls around it. There was plenty of room and sunshine was able to filter through for the Alienage gardens and they had a fresh stream that ran through it for clean water.” “My father and the Hahren were able to agree that no slops could be thrown in the streets and the fresh natural water supply.” “So it was, by many, a very grand Alienage.” “Many times elves would be turned away when there was no more room” “They were paid to work the fields, help with the maintenance of the castle and there were household Elven servants.”
“Our Alienage at Highever was out among the fields in ground set aside for them, I always envied them their walk to the castle for their work, they used to get to walk the fields of grain with flowers growing on the path.” “A pleasant walk for them and often times they would sing, laugh, and be joking on their way into the castle.” “It was wonderful to hear them sing.”
“Many of them died, yet I heard you helped many escape.”
“Yes, I tried my best to save as many people as I could.”
“I didn’t have the full garrison and we were just overrun, and they just overtook the castle, my home.” “It was hard to leave those I left behind to die.” “It weighs heavy on my mind and heart even today.”
“You did what you could; you weren’t at fault for the evilness done to you and your people.” “At least you were able to fight back and save those that you could.” “It speaks of your character Warden.”
I didn’t feel that way, if she only knew of the people I had killed to even survive to even battle the blight.
“I have a few questions for you if you don’t mind Keeper.”
“Please ask I’ll help the Wardens in any way that I can.”
“When my war party found your clan in the forest there was something that Zathrian said that held my attention but at the time I didn’t have the chance to question him on it.” “Time was running short and I had to gain your troops and move on and prepare for the Landsmeet.” “Zathrian said that he knew the darkspawn were already close in the forest; yet, your people were more concerned with the werewolves, how were you able to avoid the darkspawn?” “Also I need to know what area of the forest all of you first realized that the darkspawn were in?” “Do you know where they first broke through to the surface or are there entrances to the deep roads within the forest that we may not be aware of?” “I need to find them and have them sealed off.”
Now I would see if she would avoid telling what I had already guessed on how the Dalish really traveled. If it hadn’t been for Alistair and his comment I would not have caught it. I believe that Alistair had already discerned how the Dalish had avoided the darkspawn and how they traveled, and just by coming upon their camp. Alistair’s knack of being very smart and clever and looking stupid and naive for those that didn’t know him and how his mind really worked had been my saving grace. Alistair was highly intelligent and very educated and I felt at times even more than me with his Chantry education, and he would soon use that education in helping his kingdom and dealing with the : Nobles, Banns, Freeholders, Dalish and Dwarves. The Circle and Chantry would not get over on him. Various times with his comments he had given me nudges in the directions he had wanted me to go. Others would view him as being stupid and it was all an act on his part. Those subtle hints of his, those nudges he had given to me, he had been more of a commander and the others had never realized him guiding me with his silly comments, his witty jokes. He was just as responsible for our victory as me, yet he wanted me to take the credit and I didn’t understand why. Unless he wanted me as a Grey Warden to show the people that Wardens were needed and vital to all of Thedas.
A small smile crossed the Keeper’s face. She was deep in thought on how she would respond to me and if it would be in her people’s best interest in telling a Warden a very important Dalish secret.
I waited patiently for her response.
“I know Warden that you are aware that a Keeper is the clan’s mage and protector of our ancient magic and healing powers, we keep the traditions of our people and our lore that we are trying to gather.” “This magic our ancients had for milieu also encompasses our animals.” “The Halla that you found so beautiful when you first visited us are a large part of that tradition.” “The Dalish do not travel anywhere without our Halla, they are scared to us, which I know that you are aware of Warden.”
“They represent us in so many ways and our way of life depends on them.” “Without them the Dalish would not survive and we would have to do as our cousins, and return to those that once enslaved us.” “I’m also aware Warden of the Halla that you helped to heal and helped our herder find the problem.” “You saved us from a terrible burden not just from the werewolves.” “I feel you are a woman who can be trusted so I’ll tell you.”
“Our traveling homes – our Aravels, offer more than just our homes and protection from the elements.” “Yes, we are nomads but we also could not do without them.” “I’m sure you’ve already guessed they would be difficult to get through a forest, most of the forest only have deer paths to travel, and I’m sure you already guessed there is no way our Aravels could navigate the large trees and brush.” “The Halla, with a spell known only to Keepers fly us to the various hunting grounds that we venture too.” “We’ve been able to escape many enemies: the humans especially who wish us to change our ways and follow the Chantry.” “As much as we’d like to stay within the clouds we do have the need to hunt and forage and to do this we must camp.” “We escaped the darkspawn in such a way.”
“Yes, I had already guessed but I think His Highness figured it out way before I did.”
The Keeper laughed, “Ah I see.” “How did he figure it out?”
“Well, when we were talking and visiting with your clan, he asked the question to nobody in particular how you got those large wagons through the forest?” “Not one person in our party answered him.” “I think he was hoping we’d guess and none of us did at the time, he figured it out just that quick.” “But, what he said stayed in my mind and I’ve just recently recalled it, when he mentioned you had come for his coronation and for you to see to your troops here, to heal those in need from the battle.”
“I wonder how he put it together, rarely does an individual do so,” she replied. “If you recall our encampment was in a large clearing with large paths leading to and from our encampment making it appears that our aravel travel on the larger paths.
“I’d guess due to his Chantry education and the histories of various peoples in Thedas.” “He has spent most of his youth studying such things and about magic, not just training to be a warrior and Templar of the Chantry.”
“It brings to my mind how much the Chantry knows of the Dalish ways?”
“I’m also guessing you travel in the manner in which you do because of the Templars as well, would I be right in my assumption?”
“Yes you would, the Chantry is aware that Dalish Keepers are mages and like other apostates we must stay on the move out of the way of Templars who would search for us.” “Our people would not survive without a Keeper’s healing.” “My clan would never allow the Templars to take me nor would any other clan.” “A clan who loses their Keeper would need to find another clan to join up with.”
“As for your question on the darkspawn, they broke through the ground deep within the forest not too far from Gwaren and even further south in the Kocari Wilds.” “Old legends of my people state there are long forgotten entrances to the deep roads within the forest.” “These will be near the town your people call Gwaren to the southwest of this town.” “The legends say there are dwarven doors that are bolted and none may open the doors unless a dwarf is with them.” “The Dalish don’t travel the deep roads so you will have to have the aid of the Dwarves to find them.” “There might be records in Orzammar telling the locations of the doors within the area in the south.” “Many of the records that we found ages ago didn’t tell the exact location.” “I’m sorry I wish I was more help to you.” “If you come to the area to search, please know you will be welcome to our camp.” “You would be an honored guest.”
“Thank you, Keeper.”
“There are two more things I’d like to discuss with you.”
She sat on her stool very relaxed and open.
Information wasn’t exactly what I had in mind, oh well here goes I thought.
“There is a small child in the Alienage here in Denerim whose mother was murdered in Highever, her mother told me of her and I was shocked to come across her during my time in the Alienage here.” “With the permission of Hahren Valendrian, would it be possible for the Dalish to take her in and get her away from this area due to the carnage she has seen and because she is now an orphan; also for the fact I had the sensation that she might possibly have magical abilities.” “If the Templars become aware of her they will take her to the tower and she will never be with the City Elves again.” “She needs to be taught magic properly.” “I feel responsible for her now since her mother died in the carnage at Highever.” “The young child’s name is Amethyne.”
“Why do you suspect she has magic abilities?”
“Wynne noticed it.” “She was the only mage in the area that we knew of and she could feel magic from the child.”
“I’ll take this up with Valendrian and see what can be done for the child.” “If she has magic abilities she might be a candidate to become a Keeper.” “Leaving her in the city would not be a good idea.” “The Templars will become aware of her and she will become lost to the Dalish forever if they find her.”
“Thank you Keeper.”
“What is the next thing you wanted help with?”
Here goes I thought. I really needed this to happen.
“What I’m going to ask is a personal favor and one that needs to remain a secret and one that I need your help with.”
“I’m puzzled on what you feel I can do for you besides help your mage in helping you heal quicker?”
“Well it has to do with me needing to travel from Denerim to Gwaren and the need for nobody knowing that I’m gone.” “I need to get there and back with all due haste and I need a fast way to travel and get back in time for His Highnesses coronation.”
I saw the realization of what I was asking light in her eyes and I really didn’t know if she would allow me the use of an aravel and a Halla to get there and back.
“May I ask why this need is so great and also needs to remain a secret?”
“I need to get to Gwaren to uncover documents that will stop any further civil war from happening in Ferelden and possibly the lives of His Highness and me.”
“Your lives are in danger still, with the blight ended?”
“Yes because of Anora and her followers.”
“I understand you are the reason she doesn’t hold the throne any longer.”
“Yes, I’m the reason.”
“I felt Alistair was the better choice and he is the true heir of the throne, not Anora.” “Anora was only Queen because she was King Cailan’s wife; she was not of the blood of the Theirin line, no royal blood of any kind runs through her veins.” “She didn’t birth an heir for the Kingdom therefore she didn’t have the right to stay on the throne even as Regent.”
“You believe she will try to kill both of you and regain her throne?”
“Yes she will; she has already made a threat to my life here in the fort.” “If I don’t get those documents she will continue.”
“This is why security is difficult to get through to see you and everyone needs to have His Highnesses permission to see you?”
“How will these documents help in stopping her?”
“The documents will prove her treason against her husband King Cailan and to Ferelden as a whole.”
“She will hang for what she has done for her crimes to her husband and to the country she was called to protect and Ferelden’s citizens.”
“If she regains her power she might continue with the selling of my people into slavery once more?”
“Yes, I believe that she will.”
“How soon would you need an aravel and Halla?”
“Tomorrow night, Anora has already sent her maid and she already has a few days head start on me, if she gets those papers before I do, then another civil war will come to Ferelden and all will suffer because of it.” “War will ravage the land once more and Orlais could take the opportunity to invade and we’d all become slaves once again, except the Wardens.” “I’ll only be able to accept the most promising recruits within the Wardens so I’d be able to save but a few.”
“You are a Warden; she would dare such a thing?”
“She doesn’t care that I am and she would bring the wrath of the Wardens down on her head, she only seeks power.”
“This is most serious, I must think on this a moment.” “What you ask is difficult.”
“Please take your time to decide, if you choose not to help me I’ll understand.”
Several minutes passed.
“I’ll agree to help you with one condition?”
I raised my eyebrows, “what condition are you requesting?”
“I will have to go with you.” “The Halla only follow my instructions and those of the herder.” “It will be difficult to request they take us to Gwaren.”
“I’d prefer to get near Gwaren somewhere in the forest; this will be a rogue mission, done in stealth and secret.” “It would be best if you and your people are a few miles away and hidden.”
“The Dalish are used to hiding when it is necessary.”
“Alright, I’ll help you, because I don’t wish to see Anora back on the throne and my people sold into slavery.”
“Our Halla are penned near our Aravels near the forest to the entrance to the city on the south side of the main gate to the city.” “Make your way there tomorrow night and we’ll use the cover of the forest to get you to Gwaren.”
“Thank you Keeper, I’ll own you much if I succeed.”
“You’ll owe me nothing Warden, keeping my people from becoming slaves in Trevinter is payment enough for me.” “You and I both know they use the blood of Elven slaves for their blood magic.”
She stood up to leave and offered her open arms to give me hug.
“Of course, I’d be honored.”
She hugged me, when she stepped back she gave me an odd look. She took a ring off of her finger and handed it me.
I was puzzled and looked up at her when she handed me the ring.
“When your time of birthing is near put this ring on and make sure you have an Elven mage with you.” “The ring will alert me that your time is near and I’ll watch from the fade and keep you safe.”
A chill went up my spine; this was the same thing that Urthemiel had said to me in the fade.
“I need to get back to my people and see that all is in readiness for our journey tomorrow night, until then Warden, may the ‘Creators’ be with you.”
“Thank you Keeper for coming to see me and the offer of your help.” “Kristoff will see you are escorted back to your soldiers waiting for you downstairs.”
She smiled that lovely smile of hers that held secrets and took her leave.
I was alone for a few moments when Zevran strolled through my door.
“Well you look like the cat that has gotten into the cream.”
“I’ve been busy the last several hours and solved many problems from my bed.”
“So it’s to be a bit of fun then after all.”
“Yes, Zev, we leave tomorrow night.”
“As you say.”