Tales of loathsome tyrants and prophesied saviors aren't nearly so appealing when you are a royal bastard with a prophecy hanging over your head.


I sneak another peek at the sheet of paper tucked in the pages of my textbook so it looks like I'm reading the book to follow along with Silva while I examine the sketch Lallie made for me. It shows the style of the dress Miss Trelanna is making and how it will suit my rough body type. We worked together on it, and Miss Trelanna happily let me offer my own input.

It's still fancier than I like, but Lallie had whispered that she'd see what she could do to sabotage it. The sleeves will be left clear for me to embroider, myself. Miss Trelanna rather liked my cloak.

Notes cover the drawing, and it's interesting to see how a particular seam will fit. I never learned to work with sketches. I wonder how closely the sketch and dress will parallel.

Silva glimpses the sheet and gently pulls it from the book. "Miss Trelanna does good work. You'll see it soon enough."

That reminds me of how much the tailor spoke of Silva while measuring me, and what Prince Aidan said of the tailor and the faery sewing school.

"Is Miss Trelanna a relative of yours?"

"My aunt, yes." Silva smiles. "My mother's sister; Father met her at the faery school."

…Lord Elwyn studied sewing?

"Geddis worked for her, helping with errands and such, before she became old enough to work in the castle kitchens, and Lallie works for her now."

"Old enough?"


What?! How can this be? "I wasn't yet ten when I first worked in the kitchens." Not quite yet, anyway.

"No, you weren't."

Perhaps Cook introduced the rule after I caused such a nightmare for her, and I just forgot glimpsing Geddis around before I was banned from the kitchen. Head injuries can do that.

But if the rule is newer, why won't Silva say as much?

I'm confused. But Silva doesn't look like she's going to answer any more questions.

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