At the far end of the entrance hall, they opened the doors to the Lord’s audience room, a larger, also columned room like the last, but at the end was a raised platform holding an acacia wood throne, the legs like the stem of several roses entwined and coming together at the back of the seat were at the top, several buds bloomed.
                On the seat sat a young man with dark blonde hair parted to the sides. The position suited him as he sat on the seat, straight backed and chin up, looking upon the small gathering of citizens. He wore a luxurious azure robe with a red and gold sash draped around his waist and across his body and over his back, hanging like a cloak. Dalaena’s husband looked almost regal, and he was smiling as he looked out. For an instant she was happy to see him again.
                Dalaena clung to the shadows behind the pillars with Edaran and watched as Eldin addressed the problems of the commoners. From here she could see the seat that would be hers, smaller than the Lord’s seat on its left, but just as intricate in its design with the spindly legs and arms that bore wooden fruits. At the right side of the Lord’s seat was the stewards, much more plain but just as tall.
                Even now, there sat Gregry Drayvon, putting his lips to his Lord’s ear when a new person came up or to offer advice. He was an old man, as many stewards seemed to be. It was an odd thing that. Often stewards grew old where Lords did not; there was an old joke there but Dalaena had forgotten it, yet whilst the Lords went off fighting the King’s battles, the stewards stayed behind in relative safety and ruled the lands. It was difficult to decide who the true lord was, or at least, who held the most intelligence. Gregry had served three Lords now, including Eldin.
                “Who now steps before your Lord Eldin?” The steward called out. It troubled Dalaena that he referred to Eldin as Lord when he was only the acting Lord.
                “Jayke m’lord, j—just a humble farmer but, well we’s had some trouble of recent, I—I—er—“
                “Pray now, what is this trouble?” Eldin asked, soothing yet firm as if he were talking to children. “Speak true and quickly now, Jayke.”
                “Well, there been trouble on the waters. As the traders tell it, from the Whiteraven to the Coasts of Highwater. I wouldn’t know ‘bout such things, but them pirates been raiding villages and some of ‘ems been stealing my crops in the nights. Worst of all they’s taken some cattle too. If I can’t sell my harvest, I can’t help feed the realm m’lord. They is saying there’s been a raise in raiding of recent.” The farmer stopped. Dalaena could see his hands shaking has he twisted a cloth, pulling and yanking at it this way and that. It didn’t look like a man’s thing to carry however, all floral patterns and lacey.
                “Would that I could give you crop and cattle Jayke, but as it happens, you are the farmer here, not I. Is this not a matter for your Farmer’s guild however? Come now, what would you ask of me?” Eldin spoke, he was very good at this. Damyen had trouble masking his disdain, often he wouldn’t bother speaking and let his steward do that for him, but Eldin seemed to show care.
                “More ships on the sea if it would please m’lord. Some com—com—er...”
                “Compensation for your losses, eh?” Eldin smiled at that. The farmer seemed to have trouble with that word.
                The steward whispered something briefly in his ear then, Eldin’s expression remained unchanged.

The End

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