They weren’t being closely guarded. After Leein had recounted the events in the rail yard it had been deemed too dangerous to hold them against their will. Instead, they were guests and potential allies. They accepted the situation, they were strangers in the city and did not yet know enough to comfortably make their way.
The larger man, Aurile, had picked up the language rapidly and now spoke it with the precision of a highly schooled lord. The other two weren’t learning so fast, but had their own idiosyncrasies. The small man, Fynn, studied everything, seeing the smallest detail. The woman, Shara, was poised and dangerous even when, as now, she lounged in the bay window watching the city go by.
“We are explorers.” Aurile explained.
“From the South?” Gerryl had taken upon himself the task of questioning the strangers.
“No, not from the South.” Aurile smiled.
“We have heard of travellers from the Silver Tower.” Shara understood some of the sentence. She turned and gave the conversation her full attention. In all his years, Gerryl had rarely felt as nervous as when he had Shara’s attention.
“I believe it is possible we are seeking the Silver Tower. We know exactly what we are trying to find, but cannot be sure how your culture refers to it.”
“You make it sound as if we are primitives.”
“Hardly. You are no more a primitive than we are the gods a primitive would worship us as. We are somewhat nervous, however, that you may have trouble comprehending our story.”
Fynn, who had been listening intently, stood and walked to the door. He said something to Aurile. “There appears to be a commotion in the building. You are about to have a visitor.” There was the sound of feet almost running down the corridor then the door opened just as Fynn stepped aside.
“Aylo! What are you…..” Gerryl cut himself off. Aylo was a good troop and would not come to the headquarters without fair reason. The younger man slapped a piece of paper on the table and stood back. Only then did he take in the room’s other occupants. For a moment he thought Shara’s stare was something other than dangerous.
“I do not understand the language that well, but….. This is an order to liquidate a whole neighbourhood.”
“Yes, and I believe they are serious. Boran will give his life when they discover he leaked it.”
Aurile had taken the sheet and was reading it. He turned to confer with his companions.
“It seems your assessment of him was correct.” Gerryl conceded, for what little comfort that afforded Aylo.
Aurile turned back from his conference. “We would like to help you.”
“Yes. It is not entirely altruistic. Perhaps, if we all see this through, you can help us.”