“Good Morning Orrick” Valdermar smirked as the nobleman led is new ‘wife’ into the dining room for breakfast. Ailana seemed quiet, demur and somewhat nervous … as he supposed most young women felt on the morning after their wedding. “How was the room?” he asked, “Or more importantly how was the wife?”
“Val!” Holly exclaimed.
“What?!” her husband chuckled, “He should consider himself blessed we didn’t all pile into his room at the crack of dawn to make sure everything was as it should be”
Orrick frowned, “Everything was as it should be”
“Well not quite” Valdermar chuckled.
“Val please!” Holly begged, looking apologetically up at her step father.
“Lord Baeumont, please show my wife the proper respect or I fear we will not be friends for long” Orrick complained, “If this is your crude way of asking if everything was formalised then let me assure you it was. I have no complaints and I hope that puts an end to this somewhat inappropriate conversation”
“So what are your plan’s now?” Abel enquired, a clear attempt at changing the conversation “Do you plan to go back to Fraymont?”
“Yes of course” Orrick nodding, pulling out a seat so that Ailana could sit down, before sitting down himself. “I have some things to manage, but I suppose what I really want to know is what do you pair plan on doing about Gabriel?”
“What do you mean?”
“There are three nobleman at this table… “
“Four!” Anya interrupted “I speak for my husband”
“Four…” he corrected “though I dare say one of them is far prettier than the rest of us. We are all clearly here because we don’t agree with what Gabriel is doing to some degree or other”
“I wouldn’t say that” Abel reasoned.
“Oh I apologise” Orrick chuckled, “I guess your here with Gabriels full knowledge and approval then?”
“Well not exactly”
“No I didn’t think so. Nor do I suppose you would be here at all if everything in Aelmead Castle was as it should be. I’m not the ideal husband for your sister. You needed to get her out of there where she would be safe and I was an acceptable solution”
“Your point? If your asking me to go against my own brother your going to be disappointed”
“Why not? Are you saying that the goings on in the castle rest easy with you? Tell me Abel … you’ve always seemed an honourable man, how do you sleep at night?”
“What go’s on in my brothers castle is his own business”
“Tell me, do you know what he is doing to Maegan? Of course you do. How can you not?”
“Maegan is not my concern” Abel reasoned.
“Damnit” Orrick growled slapping his hand on the table, “She is a young girl, a good girl and he is beating and raping her…”
“Father there are ladies present” Raeanne interrupted.
“Damn the woman” he cursed, “Ignoring it won’t make it stop”
“Orrick I really am sorry for what is happening to Maegan” Abel reasoned.
“Damnit… so you admit to knowing it’s going on?”
“She is his wife” Abel reasoned, “Duncan already tried to take her away, she doesn’t want to leave”
“She doesn’t want to leave because she is scared he’ll hurt me if she leaves… thats blackmail not love! but if we rally together… who says we can’t put an end to this?”
“Orrick … I have no money for a war against Gabriel” Valdermar reasoned, “I would help.. I really would but Daniel has already given control of my lands to Gabriel, if I go against him id very quickly find my own soldiers turned against me”
“Orrick … im sorry I can’t be part of this” Abel reasoned standing from the table. “I have spoken to Daniel but unless he makes it stop I can not be party to this”
“What? So just because Daniel hides behind his own cowardice, you find that reason to hide behind your own?”
“It is not cowardice … it is loyalty to my king, to do anything else would be treason!”
“It’s only treason if acknowledge Daniel as the rightful King” Orrick growled.
“I can’t be part of this” Abel reasoned, “Ailana I wish you well, please talk some sense into your husband, else you’ll find yourself widowed before the year is done”