So, the council wants us to tell the king about our squadrons, eh?
"Let's saddle the horses." I said to the boys.
"Ok." They both said. Peder was still shocked about my hair, but it was a little bit of a relief for me. No more tangles. We all went out and saddled our horses. Moonlight snuffed at my face to make sure it was me. Then we all mounted and rode off. We reached the castle at sunset, and decided to camp out. The horses were tethered to trees and we all slept next to them.
The next morning, we made our approach. The guards were astonished to see Peder. He looked different, I could tell. Life in the forest had helped him. There was a light in his eyes that wasn't there before, his hair was messier, not to mention he was wearing different clothes.
"Let us in." He commanded. The guards quickly did his bidding and we entered without trouble. Drake and I followed Peder into the royal throne room, where the King was finishing his breakfast.
"Peder!" He shouted when he saw us. He ran forward to embrace Peder, but Peder's arms seemed limp at his sides.
"Hello. Finally, a warm welcome after all these years, and all I had to do was run away." He said blankly. The King pulled away and held Peder at arm's length. He squinted at him.
"Run away? You were kidnapped!" He exclaimed. He looked over and saw me. "By her!"
"No, father. Tell me, can you imagine a 13 year old of her size kidnapping me?"
"Her parents probably did it!"
"Our parent died seven years ago." Drake and I answered at the same time.
"Father, I wasn't kidnapped, I ran away. I don't want to marry. Not now, so I ran. Destiny gave me a place to stay, at her house with her brother. Believe me, I was happier there." Peder looked his father in the eyes.
"Well, what are you doing back?" King Reagal asked.
"We heard you were having a bit of trouble with the Duke of Kikong."
"We come from a hidden village in the forest, one your soldiers would never be able to find." Drake began. My turn.
"We have trained squadrons. We've come to ask you if you would like to enlist us." The King looked at me.
"It never ocurred to me I don't know where you live." He muttered. Then he let go of Peder and folded his arms. "What are your terms?"