He suppressed a shudder at the thought. Over the short time he had known her she had proven herself a friend, even if she was difficult. Even the thought of leaving her when she was in need made every fibre of his being to protest. If the thought of running made his flesh creep then the regret of doing so would be terrible – but having regrets was better than being dead.
“You have a wish that you want granted?” she said from in front of him. He nearly fell backwards in his seat in shock. Had he been so absorbed in his own troubles that he hadn’t noticed her approach? “You have something you need hidden? Yet you cannot do so while you accomplish your goal? Does that about sum up your problem?” she asked as she calmly took a seat across from him.
He studied her calmly, cautiously. She was clearly a noblewoman – her clothes told him that much. They were made from fine material and their design was even more elaborate that those he had seen in his university years at the various balls he had attended. The slim fitting dress was offset by the widely flared sleeves there were not even attached to the main piece but instead stood up and out from the shoulder. Various trinkets ornamented her black garb, which was only coloured with full moon designs on her shoulders and chest.
Even her appearance suggested regal status. Her slim, fine features were as pale as the moonlight and her long, dark hair reached down to her waist despite the elaborately pinned style that she wore it. Yet no one noticed her. That told him one thing – this woman was not to be trusted.
“And who are you?” he said bluntly.
“My name, William, is Morgana.”
“How do you know my name?” he demanded, startled.
“It is my business to know,” she told him coolly “the same way i know about your friend, you’re real name, your past, your present and your future... to a certain extent. But that is of little importance. What is important, William, is your friend in the baths. My employer has instructed that i be honest in my dealings with you so let me be blunt; my employer wants your friend’s help.”
“Then why are you asking me instead of her?”
“I hardly want to intrude on a bathing lady. It would be discourteous at best.”
“You could have waited. I doubt she would be long... so in the interest of that honesty that your employer spoke of, why me?”
“Well,” she started, a broad grin emerging from her stark red lips, “this way I get to talk to a very interesting young man. Your friend interests my employer but you, William, interested me a great deal.”
That took him off guard. The conversation so far had been focused entirely on Whisper that William had entirely discarded the notion that he was important. The hungry look in her eyes had him worried but there was little possibility that the bounty his father had on him was enough to persuade a noblewoman to come look for him – even if she was, as he predicted, a mage of some sort.