It was hard, feeling as the need to be in two places at once.
Alexander had just put Zahra to bed when he raced back down the stairs and entered the room in which Adrian lay. Casting a cursory glance at Imelda, he knelt beside his friend's bed and glanced up at the doctor, who had been making trips in and out of the room, fetching water from here and medicine from there.
"Your Highness, permission to speak?" the doctor asked, stopping his work and watching the prince.
"I'm afraid that it doesn't look very good." The doctor's voice was hushed, as though he was afraid to speak to the prince.
"How bad is he?" Alexander asked, meeting the doctor's eyes. It was hard to; he normally didn't look anyone in the eyes. But he felt the need to pry the real truth from the doctor.
Ever the chivalrous one, Alexander didn't want to cause Imelda to feel bad, but he motioned for her to come forward. The young woman stepped in Alexander's direction, remorse written across her face.
"I need you to leave now," the prince said. He motioned to one of the guards who stood by the door. "Take her to the cell in which Sara - Zahra - has been staying, please."
Imelda shook her head, her eyes wide. "I'd like to stay here, please," she protested.
But of course, the guards listened to the prince, not the prisoner. As Imelda was ushered out of the room, Alexander felt quite guilty for forcing her to do something against her will, but he had to do what he had to do.
For the next few minutes, Alexander listened to the doctor's predictions as to Adrian's health. Finally, however, he stood and made his way to his chambers to check on Zahra. Chances were the little prisoner had removed herself from the bed and was trying to find her sister.
Zahra, what has your family done to us?