Rowan of Monalin

Ro was glad that the bastard was locked up. Don't get her wrong, she was thrilled. But she wouldn't feel like justice was properly done until an arrow drawn from the man's own bow was sunk into his heart. That was how executions were done in Mointeach. It was only fitting.

And she would be even less satisfied if it were anyone but herself or Seán to do it.

But since William had been pretty confident no final decision would be made tonight, she decided it would be better to just...focus on something else. Torin usually did the trick, being the closest thing to a child she was having any time soon. Returning to her bedroom, she and Will entered to find Freja and Brinn both attempting to….

Actually, Ro wasn't sure what the hells they were doing.

They appeared to be reaching under the bed for something, but fuck if Ro could tell what. "Uhhh," she started, staring at them as Will shut the door, his own brow raised. "What're y'doin'?"

Brinn gave a small shout and yanked her arm back out from under the bed, nursing her hand. She muttered something in the language of Valnatta, glaring at the space beneath the bed. "Torin's under there," she mumbled grouchily, getting up to grab something to wipe off the blood on her hand.

"Yes," Freja confirmed. "He's stolen a pillow and is rather disapproving of the idea of returning it."

Rowan sighed. She went up and replaced Brinn at the side of the bed, crouching down to look. Lo and behold, there was Torin, sitting rather smugly on a quite chewed-on pillow, and too far under the bed for anyone to reach him or his prize. He hissed at Freja on the other side. "Oi!" Ro barked.

Torin turned his head in surprise, then lowered it, staring at her.

"Aye, that's right, y'little shite," she muttered. "Mum's caught ya red-winged. Now quit nippin' yer aunties an' get out from under there, y'bastard."

As Torin sheepishly crawled over to Ro, she reached for him and pulled him out the rest of the way. When she sat back up again, holding him, she looked up to see William shaking his head. "What?" she asked, confused.

"Nothing," he murmured, chuckling to himself.

"Liar, say it!"

He grinned at her with amusement and sat down on the floor beside her, running a hand through her hair. "My mother is going to have some words regarding your parenting skills."

Rowan rolled her eyes. "Yer mum's never met a mum from Mointeach, then." For all the arguing she and her own mother did, and for how unpleasant Ro could say it was from personal experience, she knew well enough that she likely wouldn't be much different. Except, she would probably sooner applaud her children for doing something stupid but awesome than scold them.

But that was what Will was for.

"Gods," he murmured. "The future Queen of Talador, who terrifies her knights with her interrogations and calls her children 'little shites.'"

"Oi, I'll be the best fookin' queen, you shut yer mouth," she defended herself. Ro had begun to get used to the idea of her future title, and as such, the more confident she was feeling with it. Damn right she'd be a fine queen someday. William merely laughed and kissed her temple.

Since the problem at hand was dealt with, Brinn and Freja removed themselves from the floor and sat on the bed, gazing down at the prince and future princess. "You've come a long way," Freja said with a smile. Though on the surface she was speaking in regards to Torin, Ro sensed that the Valnatta meant a lot more than that. It made her practically glow with pride. "I don't believe Brinn and I are needed here anymore, for now," the older woman continued.

Rowan stared up at her at that. "...What d'y'mean?" she asked, furrowing her brows.

Freja gestured to Torin, who was at the moment attempting to escape from Ro's lap. "I've given you all the knowledge you will need to properly raise him—at least, this year. I have full faith that you will do a wonderful job with Torin, Ro," she said, smiling warmly. "Brinn and I have our own responsibilities in Valnatta, and it is time we return to them."

Though that both saddened and frightened Rowan for her dragon experts to be leaving, she understood. "Alright," she responded with a nod. "That's fair."

"Don't worry," Brinn piped up. "We'll be back in time for when things start changing."

"Aye," Freja agreed. "We know a dragon's life stages like the backs of our hands. You won't need us for a while now." Then she chuckled. "Perhaps our next visit will be less of a surprise, hm?"

Ro giggled sheepishly, mostly because Will laughed. "That'd be fantastic," he snarked, giving his lover a pointed look.

"Shut up," she muttered, shoving him.

The two Valnattas got off the bed and started for the door. "We'll likely depart in the morning," Freja added. "However, if you need anything, don't hesitate to send a bird."

Rowan nodded at them, bidding them goodnight as they left. Then she removed Torin from her lap, because he'd been naughty, and sat herself up on the bed. He was sad about that, because he hadn't yet figured out how to climb it on his own, but that was the point. "No," she told him. "You've been bad. Don't pet him!"

William immediately lifted his hands in the air, snorting. "Apologies, my Lady," he teased, joining her on the bed. Left alone now on the floor, Torin snorted and stalked off into a corner, curling up there and staring pointedly at the pair of them like a child put in time-out.

She sighed and shook her head, immune to that. After having helped raise four of her siblings thus far, she was pretty sure she had this parenting thing down pat. Ro leaned into Will, who put his arm around her and kissed her temple. "...D'y'think he'll be killed?" she eventually murmured.

Will furrowed his brows. "Who; Trutha?"

Ro hummed in confirmation.

He exhaled. "It's very likely," he replied. "He attempted to have me killed, and conspired to do the same with my brother. I have little doubt he'll be executed."

She nodded slowly. Then she said, "Seán should do it."

William was silent a moment, before responding, "I agree."

"An' it should be the way we do it. With 'is own bow. Hangin' 'n beheadin' jus' feels...inadequate. An' 'e deserves nothin' less."

He rubbed her waist softly, his lips still close to her temple. "It's alright, Ro," he told her. "He'll get what he deserves. I'll make sure of it."

Ro shifted to better hug him, and wrapped her arms around his torso. She shut her eyes and merely breathed him in, letting content wash over her. "Hey Will?" she mumbled against his chest.

"Hm?" he responded, trailing his fingers up and down her back.

"I love you."

He was silent for a moment, but then she could practically hear him start to smile. "I love you too, Ro."

"That's Lady Ro t'you mister."

"Oh here we go..."

Thank you for spending your time reading The Kingdom of Talador!

The sequel to The Kingdom of Talador has been written - however, it's up to the readers and their support for this novel to be published on FictionPress! Alexis and I write quite a bit and we currently have over five dozen books that we have completed and we are still currently writing together. If you enjoy any of our novels, reviews of support and follows, only encourage us to post and share the stories that we write together. Little feedback diminishes our motivation. Therefore, anything is welcome! Please let us know if there is an interest in the sequel, The Decendants of Talador. Otherwise, feel free to enjoy other novels that we have posted on Alice's account, ChemistryOfLife.

Thank you once again for your ongoing support!

XOXO Alice and Alexis