Jernis growled as he watched the dice come up Black Bitch’s Eyes. “You win again,” he spat out to Noseless Leil.
Leil gathered up his winnings. “What can I say? Born lucky, I was…” He scratched idly at the scar left over from having his nose chopped off by an Almacian justice.
Razalic glared at the former cutpurse and clenched his fist. “I’ll bet.”
Jernis realized that he was watching something very dangerous beginning, and that his (admittedly nebulous) duties as the man left in charge meant he had to stop it, much as the thought of Leil coming afoul of his partner comforted him. “Now, now, Razalic. Folks can be lucky, some of the times. It’s the way of the world.” He grinned at the hulking man. “We just have to remember, we’re playing for bigger stakes then a little dice game. His ‘ighness wouldn’t be happy if fell to quarreling.”
Razalic growled, then contented himself with fixing Leil with a stony stare. Gilly gave a frustrated yelp, and kicked at the side of the ship’s chambers. “How long are we going to be here?” she muttered. “I’m bored.”
“The Prince will tell us when we’re needed,” said Jernis. “Just you wait, Miss Gilly. He’ll send the word, and there we’ll be, enjoying Tintagel.”
Gilly pouted. “But why can’t we go out there NOW?”
Jernis regarded his large, rather threatening partner, the scarred young girl, and of course, Noseless Leil for a moment. Jernis knew it said something that he was, perhaps, the most normal-looking man in this company, not least because of a life spent hearing comparisons between himself and various rodents and weasels that usually ended favorably for the animal. “We’s a tad rough for his present company. But rest assured, Gilly, he’ll have need of us, and when he does, we’re gonna stroll around the isles, and show ‘em what they’ve been missing.”
Gilly’s pout remained. “The Serjeant doesn’t have to stay here.”
Jernis gave Gilly a smile that only she would have found reassuring. “Ol’ Lanval’s a nobleman. He knows their ways. We’re a commoner sort, Gilly, who His ‘ighness as lifted up outta the offal to ‘elp him with his great task.”
Gilly was silent. “So I’ll get to burn things?”
Jernis nodded. “Most definitely,” he declared with confidence. True, he didn’t quite know Amfortas’ plan, but the fact was, if he’d brought Gilly along, there was going to be a need for fire.
That was pretty much her function in the Prince’s Men, after all.