Saturday, October 31, 2015

Red As Any Blood--Part 42

Braddock watched the men and women dancing in the street, singing the song of the Holly Throne.  The tune was, he had to admit, stirring, though he found the words rather disturbing, especially when he heard them singing about the holly being red as any blood...

A pair of familiar hands massaged his shoulders.  "You're tense," said Eirene gently.

"I'm staring a potential massacre in the face," said Ben quietly.  "I fear it's hard to be otherwise in that situation."

Eirene leaned forward and kissed him on the forehead.  "You poor dear," she said.  "I honestly wonder how  you managed to function as a mercenary..."

Ben smiled at that.  "Just because one makes a profession of war does not mean that one holds it should be simple butchery."  He gave a shrug.  "Besides, I like these people.  They seem pleasant.  I wouldn't like to seem them all killed horribly."

The witch gave a quick nod.  "Me neither..."

"Can't you...?" asked the mercenery captain hopefully.

"I keep telling you people," she replied with a roll of her eyes, "I'm not that powerful a witch.  Most of what I can do is... basically, make things that are going to happen, happen slightly better."

A slight cough interrupted them.  Braddock turned to see Caspar standing there with a small fellow in neat, plain clothing.  "Captain," said the slightly chunky Tintagelian with a bow.  "Here's the man you want.  Mauritz."  The little fellow stared at the witch and the captain with wide eyes, but eventually managed a rough bow.

"Thank you, Caspar," stated Braddock evenly.

Caspar gave another one of his coughs.  "If you wish, we could leave you two for a moment..."

Eirene's eyes went slightly wide at that, and her hands jerked away from Ben's shoulders.  "That won't be necessary," answered Braddock with a sigh.

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