â€œYou should have done,â€ Indaturan said. â€œBut I wonder why he was after your research? He wouldn’t have been interested in the bond problem.â€
â€œHe might be, actually,â€ Alartyia said slowly. â€œIf he’s realised why born dragons don’t have heart friends. He may not care about the bond but its nature might teach him something about achieving his own goals.
â€œThat’s true,â€ Savira said quietly. â€œBut would it have occurred to him? He’s not the cleverest of us, after all.â€
â€œHe’s clever enough to hold his Miriate for millenia,â€ Indaturan said. â€œThough perhaps not to realise that.â€ He hummed to himself. â€œBut some of his Alrari might realise and nasty as he is, he does listen to them. At least he does when it relates to what he wants.â€
â€œLet’s try and find out,â€ Alaryia said. â€œRight now we’re just guessing and that doesn’t help resolve the situation. For now we should adjourn this and let Matthias-idan and Sonia-ida check with the people they wish to raise Savira in her new life.â€
â€œWe should, shouldn’t weâ€ Sonia said. â€œAnd check things haven’t fallen apart while we’re gone.â€
â€œThey won’t have,â€ Julie said confidently. â€œA message would have come if they had.â€
â€œThat’s true, Sonia,â€ Matthias said.
â€œWe should still get back,â€ she said. â€œAs long as that thing is in the sky I don’t want to be away too long.â€
â€œThat won’t be a problem much longer,â€ Darlrydan said. â€œI’m confident Anda’s device wiill work and I’m almost ready to deploy it. But he left a warning embedded in it. Xantaria will undoubtedly throw everything she can at us to stop it closing. She wants it open and is behind the void storm around it.â€
â€œVoid! He’s pushing it!â€ Alaryia said. â€œIf Xantaria finds out…â€
â€œAre you sure it’s not a trick,â€ Matthias asked. â€œHe is her ally after all.â€
â€œThat would be dishonourable,â€ Ystelyan said. â€œAnd gold is honour. Xantaria might order him to try something like that and he’d try because of his vow to her but Anda is a terrible liar. We’d know.â€
â€œAh! That’s why you said he was pushing it,â€ Lydia said. â€œBecause he’s pushing the edge of his oath to her and oathbreaking is dishonorable, if anything is.â€
â€œâ€Not exactly,â€ Alaryia said. â€œI mean she’s got him between breaking his word and acting dishonorably in her service. If he wasn’t bound he’d break his word in a moment…â€ She trailed off with sigh.
â€œSo what is worrying you?â€ Lydia asked.
â€œHe’s oathbound and doesn’t have an obvious way out,â€ Ystelyan said. â€œBut if she pushes him too far he’ll break his word anyway to avoid dishonour and for the kithreiri breaking a bound oath is usually fatal. I’d like to strangle whoever developed the technique.â€
â€œUsually?â€ Matthias said.
â€œUsually,â€ Estara said. â€œThe mirari can survive it in service of their colour. That’s where we come from.â€
â€œAh!â€ Lydia exclaimed. â€œThat’s what you call breaking your bounds? I think you were worrying about him doing that before.â€
â€œIt is,â€ Alaryia said. â€œAnd we’re even more worried now.â€
â€œWorried, why?â€ Sonia asked. â€œYou don’t want him to become a dragon?â€
â€œNot really,â€ Alaryia said. â€œGolds generally don’t make good dragons and there’s no reason to think Anda would be one of the rare exceptions. I like him too much to want to see him miserable.â€
â€œOf course he’s already miserable given what Xantaria is doing,â€ Estara said. â€œYou should talk to your mother-in-law, Al. She might be able to figure out an angle to unravel his oath.â€
â€œI will,â€ she said. â€œBecause this is a mess and that just maks me hate Xantaria more. I hope we can rescue him from her.â€
â€œMe too,â€ Lydia said. â€œHe was kind to me. I barely met him and I like him.â€
â€œYes, Anda has that effect on most people,â€ Ystelyan said.
â€œWe’re getting distracted,â€ Sonia said. â€œWe have to go to Waldhafen and talk to the Silvers.â€ She smiled at Savira’s curious head tilt. â€œThey are there with their foster daughter while she’s being healed.â€
A/N: Thanks to Torvawk for agreeing to read through the edited version of Haventon book one. I’m still looking for a couple more volunteers to read through the edited manuscript and give me final feedback before I release it as a book. If you’d like to volunteer pop me a comment on this installment and I’ll send you the manuscript.