The strange, smoky light did not fade with the dawn; in fact, the sky remained so all day, the sun seeming to hover, an angry red eye glaring down upon them.  It cast Carviliet with a rosy light and turned the forest surrounding it to a hazy grey.  Yet it shed no warmth.  Quite on the contrary, the day seemed to grow colder as it progressed.

                Seymour and Seoc located Simon in the infirmary, but Alasdair refused to let them in to speak with him.  “He’s in shock,” the Alt-Mage informed them.  “He doesn’t need visitors.”

                “What happened, exactly?” Seoc asked, and his uncle did his best to explain.

                “That’s awful,” Seymour remarked when the mage had finished.

                MacQuarrie shook his head sadly.  “You don’t know the half of it.  Mia, Fiona and I, along with some others, have been tending to them all night—are you all right, Seoc?”

                The young man had doubled over suddenly, turning away from his uncle and clutching his stomach.  “It’s those damned worms,” he groaned, catching Seymour’s eye and winking while Alasdair couldn’t see.

                The Alt-Mage grimaced sympathetically.  “I suppose we’ll have to get those sorted out soon.  Not right now, though.   I’m nodding off on my feet—”

                Seoc interrupted him by vomiting all over the floor.                             

                His uncle—who had not, thanks to the angle, observed that Seoc had made himself sick by sticking his finger down his throat—swore in alarm and rushed over to him.  “Oh, my poor boy!” he cried, putting an arm around him for support. 

                “I’m alright,” Seoc mumbled, wiping his mouth.  “I think I just need ta lie down for a bit.”

                “Of course,” Alasdair agreed, not suspecting a ruse.  “You know, there are plenty of spare beds right here.”

                “Oh, no,” replied Seoc.  “I wouldna want ta impose—”

                “No, come.  You can rest a while here while I catch some sleep, then I’ll come back and get rid of those worms for you.”

                “Alright,” Seoc affirmed, trying not to sound too eager.

                Seymour watched as MacQuarrie led his nephew into the infirmary, then left.  He would not be needed here.  Seoc knew what he was doing. 

The End

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