Family Secrets, Part Two
Family Secrets, Part Two
King Blackthorn paced anxiously back and forth in his chambers; a gravely injured Radim Bartos lay in his bed with a healer at his side. King Blackthorn stopped his pacing and looked over to an end table which had the empty remnants of a magical elixir.
“Has there been any improvement during the night?” Blackthorn inquired. The healer shook her head and replied:
“He has been the same mostly. Quite a bit of tossing and turning. He also began to mumble a bit more than usual, but nothing I could make out.”
King Blackthorn nodded as he continued to pace his chambers with his hands folded behind his back. Thoughts of hindsight and things that could have been filled his thoughts:
“Perhaps if we found him sooner, will the elixir work, will he ever recover.” Blackthorn thought to himself.
Several minutes later, there was a knock on the chamber door. King Blackthorn motioned for his servant to open the door. A rather shy messenger was outside.
“Your Majesty, Roysia Avelot is here to meet with you. She is waiting in your study.” Said the messenger.
King Blackthorn nodded and glanced back at Radim and the healer by his side before exiting his chambers.
“Ah, greetings Roysia!” Exclaimed Blackthorn as he entered his study and took a seat across from Roysia. She forced a slight smile as she replied:
“Good afternoon Your Majesty.”
King Blackthorn smiled for several moments as he admired Roysia and her presence. He then spoke:
“I do enjoy your company. It is good to have such loyal Watchmen who are by my side.”
Roysia again forced a slight smile as she bowed her head in acknowledgment.
“Do tell me, what news do you bring in your quest to bring the Family and this Moreno thug to justice?” Inquired Blackthorn.
Roysia pondered for a few moments and replied:
“We have found them, a small uninhabited island east of Trinsic. Tanila sent me to deliver a detailed plan of attack.”
“Blackthorn watched Roysia as she took a rolled parchment out of her satchel. He then smirked and inquired:
“An uninhabited island?”
Roysia chuckled as she set the parchment down in front of her. She then replied:
“We actually had sailed past the island a few times, but no signs of anything. They made their mistake after nightfall. A few campfires and lanterns; A few too many to draw suspicion.”
King Blackthorn raised an eyebrow as he listed to Roysia. He then inquired:
“What made you two decide to investigate the island?”
“I found out that Moreno would be attempting to aid his associate Ansen Siphh. It would only seem logical to bring him back with the Family if they could save him. I shadowed their forces and sure enough, they travelled back to the island.” Replied Roysia.
King Blackthorn sat back in his throne and pondered for several moments, plotting how to move on the island and bring the Family to justice once and for all. While Blackthorn was pondering, Roysia motioned to a table across the room containing a few loaves of bread and a pitcher of water. Blackthorn nodded as he continued to strategize. As Roysia walked over to the table, her eyes began to scan the King’s study. After pouring a mug with water and taking a loaf of bread, she returned to the table the King was sitting at; continuing to observe the room.
“I suppose Tanila already has this planned out, eh?” Inquired Blackthorn. Roysia smirked as the King leaned forward to take the parchment that Roysia had set down on the table. Blackthorn admired the fine wax seal and the ribbon that held the parchment closed. As he was about to break the seal and read the contents, the healer that was at Radim’s side entered the room and spoke:
“Your Majesty, it is Radim, he is speaking!”
King Blackthorn set the parchment down on the table and hurriedly excused himself from Roysia and entered his chambers. Radim was barely conscious, eyes fluttering wildly.
“What did he say?” Inquired Blackthorn as he looked over at the healer. The healer shrugged a bit and replied:
“I couldn’t make out much, but I thought I heard him utter destroy.”
King Blackthorn pondered for a few moments before walking to Radim’s side.
“Can, can you hear me Radim?” Inquired Blackthorn. With a labored turn of his head, Radim looked over at the King. His lips began to move as if he was talking, but no sound could be heard. The King looked over at the healer, and then back to Radim.
“Radim if you can hear me, you are safe now. You are in my chambers; no longer in the woods.” Said King Blackthorn. Radim continued to attempt to speak, but no sound could be heard. As the King was about to motion for the healer to retrieve a quill and parchment, Radim uttered a discernable word:
“Yes, yes! Roysia, she is here Radim! She is in the other room!” Said King Blackthorn as he stood up and made for the chamber door with the intention of having her come to his side. Radim shook his head violently back and forth which caused the King to stop in his tracks.
“Destroy…” Uttered Radim. A look of confusion came over the King as he inquired:
“Destroy? Destroy what Radim?”
Radim again shook his head violently from side to side as he lay in the King’s bed. He then spoke:
“Flute… Piper reeds… Destroy… them.”
Radim again faded into unconsciousness as the King was left pondering what Radim had just spoken:
“Destroy… the reeds… Destroy the reeds of the Piper!” The King thought to himself. He motioned for the healer to continue attending to Radim as he exited his chambers. He then spoke:
“Radim is awake! He said to des…”
The King’s statement to Roysia fell upon deaf ears as she was no longer present in his study. Blackthorn pondered for a few moments at how odd it was for Roysia to leave without bidding a proper farewell. He then slowly made his way back to his chair and broke the wax seal that was holding the parchment closed. After a moment of unravelling the paper sent from Tanila, the King began to read its contents:
"Your Majesty, Roysia Avelot has been turned by the Family. Do not let her out of your sight! Have her placed under arrest!"
A sinking, sickening feeling came over King Blackthorn as he darted up in his chair and scanned the room for Roysia, but the study was empty. Thoughts of anger, betrayal and fear overcame the King as he noticed that the Magical Reeds of the Mad Piper that were once on a bookshelf were now gone…