Jirni nodded, glad to discover that the daughter of a Dragon was still a Dragon.
Brinja had lived a sheltered life, but she had never stood idly.
Ever since she had discovered her utter lack of magical powers, Brinja had worked hard to help Mirim in every way she could.
She had learned how to administer the Distar Marquisate to lessen the burden on her mother\'s shoulders, she had looked for a talented spouse that would bring new magical blood in the household, and she had dirtied her hands in the political arena.
Lith, thank the gods you\'re still here. Manohar rushed to them, stopping for a split second in horror at the sight of Jirni.
You have to help us.
Help you to do what Lith asked noticing that the Mad Professor had dragged along Ryssa who couldn\'t stop laughing as tears of hilarity streaked on her cheeks.
Ryssa and I want to convince Marth that as soon as Junior is born, he must work hard to make Manohar the third.
If his kids are close in age, it will be easier to train them at the same time and the gods know how hard it is to find capable assistants. He said.
Yeah. Ryssa said while desperately trying to catch her breath.
But Duke is already scared at the idea of having one child and he says that he\'d rather go to war again than make another too soon.
On top of that, I\'m not going to name one of my children after you, let alone two! Marth rushed to them wearing an angry face that was the opposite of Ryssa\'s warm smile.
You know nothing about children.
A man doesn\'t become a father just to get lab assistants and I\'ll be damned before I let you anywhere near them!
I know everything about children.
I just don\'t want to make any of my own. Manohar projected a hologram about the ancient discipline of conceiving, making many people blush and forcing a Royal Guard to ask him to stop or be arrested for indecent acts.
\'I must say, everything I heard about Manohar doesn\'t do justice to his madness.
The day he decides to become a Lich, the whole Mogar is bound to tremble.\' Faluel said to Lith via a mind link while laughing her ass off.
I needed a good laugh. Lith said to Jirni while updating her about Vladion\'s latest discoveries thanks to the perfect cover that Manohar\'s fuss had created.
Don\'t relax too much.
Brinja may have dealt with Deirus but half of the people in this room are our enemies. Jirni said, taking a brief pause while she stared Lith in the eyes.
She had many questions to ask him.
Jirni wanted to know why all of her daughters spent so much time with him, why he had powers that no human was supposed to have, and also what was the secret that he shared with Nalear.
Yet Jirni knew of the storm brewing at the horizon just like she knew that even the best plans failed when an unforeseeable event threw a monkey wrench at them.
She couldn\'t risk alienating one of her most valuable allies.
Why did you break up with Kamila and why does she refuse to speak about it That poor girl is still devastated to this day.
When she received her invitation to this gala, she burst into tears and refused to come to not embarrass you, even though her absence will hinder her career.
Saying no to the Royals is a dumb move, no matter the reason.
What did you do to her and to my daughter to make them care so much for you even after you went separate ways Jirni asked the only question she had left.
She had even checked both women for slave items, finding them clean on multiple occasions.
It\'s complicated. Lith could feel Solus\'s ring weighing his hand as if he was holding a whole planet instead of a small stone.
Either you care for them or you don\'t.
Anyway, that\'s our cue. Jirni pointed at a Royal valet that was coming their way.
The young woman had a perfectly ironed suit consisting of a white shirt and scarf, a red waistcoat, and deep blue pants.
She wore such a neutral expression that to Lith she looked like any other valet whereas Jirni recognized her as a bearer of bad news from the nervous twitch of her left pinkie finger.
Archmage Verhen, Archon Ernas, King Meron has required your presence.
Please, follow me. She spoke with a perfectly audible voice yet it was so low that somehow no one else overheard her.
Please, lead the way. Lith checked his clock.
Between Manohar\'s shenanigans and Brinja\'s ruse, it wasn\'t long before the award ceremony.
After that, there would be only the ball before the Gala came to an end.
It was the perfect time for his enemies to make their last move before it was too late.
The valet led them to a side room, where King Meron and Headmistress Onia, Deirus\' second in command, waited for them.
\'No Queen nor guard.\' Lith thought.
\'Either the King wants our testimony about what happened between Brinja and Deirus or Onia is targeting me to keep her seat as the Headmistress of the Black Griffon.\'
Your Majesty. Lith and Jirni said, giving him a deep bow.
How may I be of service
Meron looked both disgruntled and worried.
He stared at Onia like at the worst party pooper ever while at Lith with a spark of doubt that needed to be extinguished.
Archmage Verhen, you have been summoned here to answer an urgent questioning.
I would have never arranged one in the middle of a Gala if Archmage Onia didn\'t raise some disturbing doubts that need to be clarified before the awarding ceremony.
Giving prizes that might soon after be taken away would set a dangerous precedent, something that I can\'t afford.
I hereby order you to answer all of our questions with the truth and only the truth.
Archon Ernas is both your friend and a loyal servant of the Kigdom.
Her role will be that of witness of the questioning and of your legal aid, were you to need one.
Is everything clear The King asked.
Yes, your majesty. Lith replied.
He and Jirni had expected some last-ditch political blow from Deirus or his faction, knowing that the attempt of making Brinja lose control and humiliate her in front of the entire court didn\'t qualify.
To the majority of the Griffon Kingdom, Mirim Distar had been just the Marchioness of an important region and so was now her daughter.
Brinja wasn\'t the Lord Commander of anything, making her downfall a sideshow at best.
What either Lith and Jirni had failed to anticipate was that instead of striking right before the gala, Deirus would attack right in the middle of it.
It allowed his faction to perform an unexpected move at the worst possible time.
No matter the outcome, a questioning regarding a loyal member of the Kingdom like Lith would remain private.
During a gala organized specifically to award him along with the heroes of the recent war against the undead, however, a crack in the bond of trust between Lith and the Royals would be immediately exposed.
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