Location: The Castle throne room in Sacor City; The Castle's Rider Barracks and Pasture in Sacor City
POV: Laren Mapstone; Karigan G'ladheon


Characters ReferencedEdit




Captain Mapstone attends the King in the throne room. He and his Councillors have been discussing Karigan fruitlessly for several hours. It is night. She is tired and stiff, and imagines that the portraits on the ceiling are disapproving. The message has turned out to be unimportant. Zachary seems quite distracted. Laren remembers the circumstances that led Amigast to name Zachary heir rather than Amilton.

Amilton was always spoiled and cruel, but after he raped the daughter of a Cloud Islands representative, Amigast named Zachary heir and sent Amilton to govern their home province. However, his poor performance and continued indiscretions there led Zachary, now king, to exile him. His current whereabouts is not known by the monarchy.

Sperren asks about Karigan, and Laren explains her story so far. They ask how she got he message. Laren claims it was coincidence, but believes it was actually the brooch calling her. The councillors wonder why they aren't questioning Karigan. Laren explains that Karigan is too exhausted to be interrogated right now.

They lament that the message has nothing important to say; Laren suggests the message is in code and takes the message to have it examined. Thy discuss the soul-stealing arrows. Laren is very unnerved by them. They discuss Galwin's opinion that the arrows were made with wood from a certain forest and steal souls. Devon is skeptical. Zachary is not, bringing up the Long War.

Devon suggests that there may be no threat beyond the D'Yer Wall. Zachary examines the arrows. He asks about the script on the arrows. He is unnerved, and gives the arrows back to Laren.

Finder growls. There is a commotion in the corridor, and the herald runs into the room. He announces that they have a visitor - Lord Shawdell of Eletia. Shawdell does not wait to be announced to approach the king. He wears a many-coloured cloak. He has bright gold hair, and is beautiful to look upon. Laren cannot read him with her ability. Shawdell tells the king that they have much to discuss.


Karigan sleeps for a very long time. She awakens in daylight, and watches horses grazing in a pasture. She notices a Weapon guarding the outside of the building. She washes and eats; a servant takes away her dishes. Karigan grows bored and envious of the horses.

Captain Mapstone arrives to question her - Karigan demands to see Condor. They go out to the pasture, Fastion in tow. It is late evening. Karigan calls Condor, and he comes to her. Karigan is pleased to see him, and he to see her. The horse is in good condition.

Laren begins to question Karigan while they sit on the fence. Laren tells her about meeting Stevic. They speak of Joy's death. Karigan learns that Rendle has spoken well of her, trying to clear her name. Karigan tells her story so far. Laren checks for truthfulness with her ability.

Night falls. They speak of the Shadowman and his arrows. No-one knows that Shawdell is the Shadowman. Laren seems impressed that Karigan outran two arrows on the Wild Ride.

Karigan is very upset to learn the message was unimportant. The Councillors are too busy with their visitor, Shawdell. Laren compliments her courage, and explains that her ability has allowed her to confirm the truth of Karigan's tale. She says she will get Karigan an audience, alone, with the King. Fastion emerges to lead Karigan back to her room,