“What is your point?” he really wished he hadn’t asked.
                “Have you never asked these questions?” he looked intensely now, some fire burning in him, the beginnings of a smile playing at those lips.
                “I assume the salt water got to them eventually, just the sight of it, most of my life, rings tiresome.” He felt his face redden. “Or maybe they wanted to make stupid boys ask silly, pointless questions.” But Eldin could only laugh, deeply and to himself.
                “Now, now father,” He leant back on his chair, elbow on the back of his seat whilst he pointed to the book. “This is the reason why I read. There are some people content to live their lives, asking no questions and accepting what is. There are too few people that ask important questions. My question of the day is this: What made them flee, and could it affect us?”
                “As I thought,” Damyen’s voice rose up and around the room, echoing throughout. “Childish.” This time Eldin’s face reddened. He grabbed his book and opened it, concentrating intently on the words. “And what happened to your notions on the sky?” he prodded, “only a week ago you had some silly little idea. But of course, your young mind is so very fiscal. And you, my heir.” He scoffed.
                His tone was low, deliberate. “My thoughts were insupportable by any book in here. Your library is insufficient for my needs. A disappointment.”
                “Then maybe you should keep your mind on where your feet are and think about the world around you. Did you know that there are vassal lords of mine who fear for when you take my place? Who beg me to name Astor my heir?” he voice was rising quicker than before. “I merely name you disappointment. It infuriated him that Eldin’s stayed so quiet. “I name you a disappointment!”
                “I am so sorry for your loss father. It must have hurt you greatly when your son Damyen died.” That surprised him. Damyen had been his brother, and yet he chose to forget that. Or was this merely for his benefit. Was he hurting or no? It was so hard to tell with this boy. He wanted to help him, but he would never learn ‘till he put down his books and entered the true world.
                He barely managed to whisper, “It did.”
                Eldin looked up then, a hint of something in his eyes, then quickly as he did, he looked back at his book. “What did you come for?” his words were strained.
                Damyen stood up, his fingers lightly touching the desk. He turned and moved to the side of the table, his fingers stroking the knotted wood till he reached the end. He leant down on it then, bending down so as to be at a similar level to his son, who paid no attention.
                “As you know,” he finally spoke. “the King’s tournament is coming and I must leave to take my place at the Kings table.” Damyen still fixed his eye on the paper, making a grunt in reply.
                “And as such, I have had to chose whom my House’s champion should be.”
                “And I very much doubt it is I.” His chest heaved with a quick snort of laughter.
                “No, it is not.” He braced himself for the next few words. “Astor will be coming with me, as a result, you will be looking after Ascocen."

The End

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