Chapter Seven - Taunted

There must have been at least twenty Frankish men waiting in two parallel lines. Eithne bowed her head, unwilling to make eye contact with any of them. Gradually the last vestiges of conversation died away, including the conclusion of what she knew to have been a bawdy joke.

Schooling her features to ignorance, she willed herself not to redden if insults of any kind came her way.

Xander sauntered along the line, his hand gripping her upper arm.

“I asked you to assemble here, men, because I wanted to express my thanks for all your endeavours in what has seemed an interminable campaign. Yes, Beauregard?”

“It has been a pleasure, Sire.”


“No need to stand on ceremony. Xander will do. Many a campaign we’ve spent wrapped in our cloaks. Which reminds me.” He glanced at her. “I need to acquire a new one.”

“Permission to speak, Xander?”

“Go ahead, Drago.”

“Will we be staying on here for a while?”

“Missing your family? I sympathise, even though I don’t know what that’s like.”

There were g
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