'Wait, the Wilthrics? Are you talking about Andrel's family?'
'Of course I am. His family's a Tetractys family.' Will's eyes widened, why didn't I know this? 'Oh, I guess you didn't know that.'
'H - how? Who?'
'Their family descends from one of the ten knights of King Artorius. The Paradam's are descended from Percival - Uncle's namesake, and the Wilthric's from Bedivere. You see what I mean about political leverage? They'd have every aspect of the control of Anamae covered.'
Knowing this new fact about Andrel - something Will intended to quiz him on later - Anala's theory began to make perfect sense. But what would be next? A ransom, demands, blackmail? It didn't explain the centaurs, he realised, but knew it could have been a mistake, or an act to purposely mislead them.
Before they could discuss the kidnappings further, there came a thunderous knock on the door, and a furious voice from the other side. 'Anala! Open this door this instant! You know what this is about!'
Anala froze in her tracks, her eyes filled with a mixture of fear and quick thought. 'Damn, I didn't think he'd be so quick.' She began hurrying around the room, shaking her hands as she tried to conjure an idea.
'Quick about what? Who is it?' Will asked, looking up at her from the floor.
'It's Bosrold,' she said, casting narrowed eyes at the door as the knocking became louder, 'HOLD ON!' she bellowed, though she turned to Will completely calm. 'I was going to head to one of his classes when you showed up.' He felt suddenly guilty, a feeling she noticed and reassured him for. 'Don't worry about it, it's much more entertaining being here with you -,'
She stopped, her eyes brightening with an idea, one that Will saw would be mischievous, as her lips curled into an playfully artful smile. She squatted down at his level, giving him a sweet, pleading smile. 'Will,' she said, almost singing his name. 'Would you mind doing me a huge favour and play along for a few minutes?'
He narrowed his eyes suspiciously, 'play along to what exactly?'
'I want to hack Cargil off, and I think I know the perfect way to do it.' BANG BANG BANG, 'AL-RIGHT!'
'What do I have to do?' he asked, though he knew he'd regret it.
She beamed at him with an excitement like she was a child eagerly opening her presents. 'Yes!'She jumped up and hurried to her vanity, looking at herself in the mirror. She flipped her head over and shook her fingers around in her hair, thickening the curls into an auburn mess. She grabbed some diamond-encrusted lipstick, which was bright red, and applied it quickly. Halfway through, her lips parted, she gestured for him to stand, 'take off your blazer.' Though confused, Will did as ordered, shrugging it off. She motioned for him to toss it over the footboard, meanwhile she purposely smudged her lipstick, no longer appearing prim and smart. When she turned around, Will realised that she'd undone half off the buttons on her cloak-jacket, revealing the curve of her breasts beneath a low cut blouse.
'Too much?' she asked. She approached him and Will's cheeks reddened as he tried to avoid staring at her now-very-noticeable curves.
'A little,' he said quietly,
'Good,' she smiled. Before Will could question her, she ran the fingers still stained with lipstick across his mouth, smudging it as well.
'Whu - what are you doing?' he stammered as she proceeded to smudge lipstick onto his collar. 'Anala!'
'Ssshh!' she chided, 'he'll get suspicious about what's going on -,'
'I'd like to know what's going on!'
She shushed him again, whispering to him, 'Cargil doesn't like me having visitors, so I'm taking it one step further.' She cocked an eyebrow suggestively, and Will's mouth dropped open.
'You're going to make it seem as if we're -,' Will felt like he'd ignited in embarrassment. She didn't say anything to object to his idea, and he quickly shook his head, 'no, no, no -,'
She clasped her hands together in a begging gesture, 'please, please, please!' she whispered, 'just for a minute, I'll owe you more than you can imagine.'
This is insane, he thought to himself, I can't go through with this! What if somebody spreads rumours?
'I believe the term in this situation would be "lighten up",' the voice in his head spoke up, fading just as quickly as it had come.
Will suspired, making his irritation clear to her, but finally saying, 'alright.'
She jumped up in glee, 'yes, thank you!' She hurried towards the door as the knob began to rattle with Bosrold's insistence. 'Now...' she said, giving him a suggestive grin, 'get on the bed.'
Will had very little time to argue or do as commanded. He managed to clamber onto the satin sheets just as Anala opened the door.