“The situation is dire, milord. We’ve lost our king, his eldest wizard and advisor lies dead, and the next in line is missing. Similarly, most of the Royal Guard was found dead on the field, but their champion is nowhere to be found. Thank the Mercies that you are here to safeguard the capital in these troubled times.”
William Marshall, Earl of Chepstow, winced as he turned on his lame leg. He keenly felt the loss of Emyr Llwyd, a wise if somewhat cantankerous man. And Gedrych’s absence was disturbing – his power would be useful to keep peace. But most troubling was the absence of the champion. William would have bet his good leg that the man would die before leaving his king. “Guess this wound was a blessing in disguise then.”
“I’m not one to judge the Mercies’ ways, milord, but I’m grateful you are here instead of…I’m sorry. I forget myself. Let me just say that Ariadh is in good hands while you are on watch.”
The earl smiled, and was interrupted by a knock at the door.