Thursday, November 5, 2015

Red As Any Blood--Part 44

Gregory sat on the wall next to the catapult--he was not going to bother with whatever complicated name Ancient had given it, damn it--watching the water.  The Leonais had stopped trying to send ships after the last three had burned, but Gregory was half-expecting them to start trying again soon.  If he'd learned one thing about the Leonais is that what they lacked in strategy, and skill, and courage, they made up for with a strange brand of stubborn determination in their officers, who apparently never saw a problem that sending wave of wave of their own men at it wouldn't hopefully dent.

There was something terrifying about that, despite the incompetence.

"Being all pensive again?" asked Gwen, as she sidled up next to him.

"More on guard,"  he replied.  "I'm expecting them to try attacking again soon."

She smiled at him.  "You know I am certain that once he gets to know you, Caspar is going to just love you.  You sound so much alike."

"Now's really not the time to talk about this, Gwen," he muttered, edging away.

"Talk about what?" she asked with a shrug.  "I think things are fairly settled."  Gwen peered at him suspiciously.  "Are you saying they aren't?"

"Again, not the time," muttered Gregory.

Gwen crossed her arms.  "You know, I'm starting to remember why I was so irritated when you left..."  She pointed a menacing finger at him.  "Considering that I'm even bloodier-minded than I used to be, that is not a good place to be..."

Gregory pinched the bridge of his nose. "Yes, yes, you are very dangerous.  I've always known that Gwen.  Even back when we first involved."

"Oh, I am dangerous?" she snapped.  "What about you?  Do you think I was surprised when I learned my brother was dead?  I knew you then, Gregory Tyne."  A bitter smile touched her face.  "And even then I saw it, even if you didn't.  There was a part of you that wanted to kill the men who thought they were better than you simply because of birth."

Gregory was thinking about how to respond to that accusation, and its awful ring of truth, when Mosca found them.  "Ahh--here you two lovebirds are," said the Master of Horse.  "You two need to stop your cooing and get to the west gate.  The Leonais are trying again.  And this time, they're coming by land."

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