. This scroll was clearly important, and Babu knew it had something to with the shadows. He could not risk ending up like the first messenger. He set his sights upon the Bloodstone Palace, sword in hand and scroll safely tucked inside his shirt, and marched off.
Meanwhile, at the palace, Lady Hera was pacing the rooms. Her tall, imposing figure striding through the top floor of the palace would scare anyone on first glance, but when you took a closer look her soft features and warm blue eyes smiling at you would put you at ease. The people of Bloodstone rarely seen her of late, and rumours had been rife that she was a tyrannical ice-queen who could kill you with one glance. Today Hera was agitated and worrisome, she had received word of a messenger, but the messenger had not yet arrived. What had happened to him? She had sent a message to Gerrin through the Dice. He had responded, told her he would send her something which may help. This had happened over a week ago, and still there was no sign of a messenger. Hera was worried, the shadows were getting closer. A young guard ran breathlessly into the room and kneeled down at Hera’s feet, “My lady,” he exclaimed. “Calm yourself, catch your breath man!” Hera scolded the soldier as she led him to a nearby chair. “Now tell me young man, what has gotten you in such a state?” The young soldier looked at her with something akin to shock on his face; the lady was nothing like people described her. She was not a tyrant, not an ice queen. She was smiling at him! Why did the people think that she was such a horrible person? He almost forgot why he had run so far, and so fast. “My Lady, there is a man demanding to see you at the gates. He claims you know who he is, and that he has something for you.” Hera was visibly relieved, “Is he a messenger?” she asked the soldier, “No m’lady, he is an old man from the village, they call him Babu.” Replied the soldier, wondering why the lady had looked so tense when he had come in. “Babu?” quizzed Hera, “Does he have a scar upon his face? Across his brow?” The soldier looked at her in wonder, “Yes m’lady, he does.” He whispered. “Then I do know him, bring him here.” The soldier nodded and rose to leave, “Wait, before you go, what is your name?” The soldier turned, “My name is Halm, m’lady.” Hera smiled and waved him away. “Thank the Great Gods.” She muttered, turning to her handmaid she said “Prepare something warm for our guest; he will have travelled a long way. And while he is here I am not to be disturbed.” The handmaid acknowledged her orders and hurried away.