As they waited in the shadows for Peter to finish talking to his subordinate, Lydia felt her father reach out to the unicorn who was helping them.
Is everything he said true? he asked.
Yes, everything, she replied. I like him Â you should help him find his heart friend.
I thought so, he said. I’m glad. And we will once the situation is a little more stable.
Do you think it will be stable enough for me to have a look around before I go back to the Storm Palace, she asked. I’d like to see more of Gaia.
I hope so, Matthias said. We’ll try and make sure it is. He narrowed his eyes. And those reporters… I have an idea. I’ll need to call Alex but I think she’ll like it.
What is it? Sonia asked.
The Prime Minister issued an invitation to us a few days back, Matthias said. Maybe we should publicly accept it.
Invite him here, you mean? Sonia said. Would he come? His invitation was a trap after all and he may expect the same from us.
If you handle it right he wouldn’t dare not, Peter said as he returned. You’ve managed to protect yourselves without hurting anyone. My underling just told me that we need to retreat â€“ you’re too well prepared. Once that news breaks he’ll look bad and need to disengage from what happened here.
That’s what I was thinking, Matthias said. Let me call Alex… she should be in range. He closed his eyes and reached out towards the school. Alex, can you hear me?
Yes, Matt, she replied. Is everything okay? The soldiers seem to have withdrawn.
Everything is good, he said and told her his idea. There was a long pause before she responded.
Yes, that’s an excellent idea. I’ll get Claire to talk to the reporters again. I think I should be the one to issue the invitation. A little old lady is totally unthreatening and makes a yes even more likely.
What about our new friend?
I’m pleased to say he’s honest. We’ll see if we can introduce you to him later. He looked back at Peter. And are you willing to break ranks and tell the press about how our mutual enemies manipulated this attack?
I am, he said. And my men are aware of the situation and as unhappy as I am so they will side with me. But we need to make sure that it doesn’t look like I’m being forced to say that by you.
That’s true, Matt, Sonia said. It’s a difficult situation he’s in.
I think I can manage it, Peter said. I have reason to make my unhappiness at the situation clear anyway as they are likely to try and use me as a scapegoat. Fortunately I didn’t think this would go the way they intended and I made sure to record all the conversations, which should make it clear I’m not being coerced.
Excellent! Matthias said. Let’s wait to hear back from Claire, then go with Alex to talk to the reporters.
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