It\'s good to see you, too.
How did your trip to the Blood Desert go Jirni asked.
Same old, same old. Manohar said with a sigh.
It\'s too hot, the people are too cranky, but at least the food is great and the kids love me.
Were you a guest of Overlord Salaark as well Friya was too surprised by the revelation to care about the Mad Professor hijacking the conversation.
In her dreams. He replied with the modesty of a male peacock during the mating season.
I go there for the same reason I go to any other place.
I have several side projects with both your father and Ily-
A prompt kick from under the table stopped him before he could mention the god of death and Jirni\'s glare did the rest.
Ilyana, a very nice Royal Forgemaster who\'s madly in love with me. Before someone could ask him any other question, Manohar stuffed his face with food.
What were you saying, dear Orion moved the attention back on Friya and nudged the god of healing, praying that his big mouth wouldn\'t cost them a charge for high treason.
The place was great.
Salaark is an amazing host and as the Professor said, once you overcome the cultural shock, the food is amazing.
I wouldn\'t mind living there. She said.
I hope that Nalrond behaved like a gentleman. Jirni said while studying her daughter\'s reaction.
He didn\'t come with us.
Nalrond has too many sad memories of- Wait a minute how do you know about him
Who\'s Nalrond Orion asked.
The new guy our daughter is dating.
Don\'t you know anything that happens inside your house, Lord Ernas Jirni felt a tinge of pleasure seeing her husband spit his food back into his plate as he became pale as a ghost.
Friya spitting her food as well and turning beet red was expected, but Phloria joining her not so much.
Since when Phloria blurted out.
It took Quylla a quick mind link from her wand to explain what was happening before the situation spiraled out of control.
\'I\'m going to kill you for this!\' Friya said.
\'I\'m sorry, but it was either this or Mom asking you if you were trying to catch Lith on the rebound.\' Quylla said, making her sisters choke on the water they were using to wash their mouths after the incident.
Good gods! Can I invite my mother for lunch tomorrow Manohar asked.
She always nags at me that I have no table manners but once she sees you, she\'ll understand how lucky she is to have a son like me.
Friya, who is this man and why haven\'t I never heard about him before Don\'t tell me that you have fallen for the charms of a lazy bum like Morok Orion said.
He\'s not a lazy bum! Quylla said in outrage.
Oh, really What does he do, exactly
She couldn\'t tell him about Morok\'s apprenticeship under Ajatar nor that he was still trying to avoid his father, Glemos.
Friya, instead, knew that Jirni would spot any half-assed lie and kept her mouth shut.
I knew it. Orion sighed, assuming that the silence of his daughters meant that he had struck a nerve.
You know what I don\'t care.
As long as you are happy, I am happy.
\'None of their previous boyfriends stuck for long and with a bit of luck, those two won\'t be any different.\' He actually thought.
The rest of the dinner passed awkwardly until everyone lost their appetite and they brought Friya up to speed.
Damn, this is a hot mess.
I came here to deal with our family\'s crap, not with the Kingdom\'s. She said.
Luckily for you, I\'m great at tailing people and very few know my face.
Unlike her sisters, Friya had never been famous after graduating from the White Griffon academy.
Everyone knew Phloria for her trial that had lasted for over one year while Quylla was renowned for her contribution to foiling the return of the Odi during the disastrous expedition of Kulah.
No offense, dear, but with a figure like yours and with dimensional magic sealed, it\'s hard for a woman like you to go unnoticed. Jirni said.
Don\'t worry about that, Mom.
As a mercenary, I\'ve learned plenty of tricks to deal with situations like this. Friya couldn\'t tell them that by using Body Sculpting to shapeshift and Spirit Magic to move around, she had no such problem.
Orion and Jirni looked at her with worry but said nothing.
When do we start
Tomorrow. Manohar said.
We have already linked the arrays of the City Hall to a silent alarm that will alert us in the case someone gets in, but I doubt something will happen.
The weapons always get stolen and returned during a social event, when the nobles can give each other an alibi and the security around the city is laxer because the guards are focused on maintaining the order in the streets.
Giving parties during a famine is like slapping the poor people in the face.
It\'s no wonder they riot. Friya\'s upper lips curled up in disgust.
Or maybe it\'s just a brilliant ruse of our shapeshifter to have everyone look in the wrong direction while they enact their plan. Jirni said.
Over a mana geyser at the borders of the Nestrar Region, Golden Griffon academy.
Thrud Griffon, the Mad Queen, was still busy collecting and taking inventory of the spoils from the cities her men had infiltrated and from Syrook\'s lair when Sevenus alerted her of the presence of an intruder that had managed to slip past her guards.
The Headmaster of the lost academy was also its living core.
Every piece of stone and glass of the academy was his eyes and ears, making it impossible for anyone to escape his detection the moment they stepped inside the Golden Griffon.
Just one Thrud was more curious than worried.
She had scouts watching all the nearby cities to be prepared to move the moment an unusual number of troops was mobilized and her men had yet to report anything.
Yes, my liege. Sevenus said.
I\'ve already checked the premises of the academy and sent more scouts without finding any trace of an army waiting in ambush.
Good. She replied, leaving him flabbergasted.
Their position was supposed to be a secret and even killing the intruder might not be enough to keep the news from spreading.
Make a straight corridor so that they can reach my throne room quickly.
The Headmaster had no idea what she was planning, but obeyed nonetheless.
The intruder turned out to be a man in his mid-twenties, 1.82 (6\') tall, with the muscular build of an athlete, black hair, and brown eyes.
He wore a full suit of armor made of black crystals that left only his face exposed.
His features were handsome, but the cruel light in his eyes and the arrogance of his gait as he walked along the corridors like a conqueror taking a look at his newly acquired possessions made the members of Thrud\'s court dislike him at first sight.
He even dared to give the Mad Queen a simple nod of the head as a greeting, treating her like a peer instead of the master of the Golden Griffon.
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