Tuesday, April 26, 2011

The Queen hadn't finished with the assassin, but Tannr and I were already bracketing the cradle to prevent a second attempt. Tannr stripped enough of his sleeve to let Raven loose to scout ahead. That damn bird has eyes all over its damn body, I sometimes think. It got me into trouble more than a few times in my youth when I was dallying with a milkmaid or whatever; but now I'm glad he's here looking out for my son.

Star is pale to the lips, but her face is hard and set, too - the face of a mother whose child has been threatened. She watches Mab deal with the assassin and doesn't flinch in the slightest. Truth to say, I think she'd help if she could.

The bird returns with (Tannr tells me) no news of other assassins; but I can't forget that we didn't see this one, either, for all our precautions. I turn to Star. "We should take Ruarc and go, maybe to the Manse, at least for awhile. They've tried once; they may try again."

"No." Star's eyes are blazing with determination, and I know better than to even try to give her an argument. "I will not be made to run away and hide. This is our place, our people. This is what Ruarc's life is going to be, for better or worse. We're going to face these people, and we're going to beat them back. Every time they send a killer, we’re going to send them a corpse back, until they learn that they can't beat us." She turns those blazing eyes on me, every inch a Warrior, for all her seeming fragility. "Don't fight me on this, Erik; my mind is made up."

"I wouldn't dare." The words are a bare whisper, so awestruck I am by the change in my formerly-timid wife. There's always been a core of steel in her… you seldom see it because of the packaging; but it's there. It's what allowed her to survive being raped and left for dead. It let her watch, coldly and dispassionately, when Keon and I killed her attackers. It only gives way when the emergency is over, when she can be soft again; but it's always there in readiness.

I think the Drow have bitten off way more than they can chew, and Star is going to be there, to help us ram it down their collective throats till they choke on it.

It was pretty anticlimactic after that. Mab knelt once more to bestow her blessing - no sign now of the rage that had whittled a man down to atoms. She left a kiss on the baby's cheek just before she rose and returned to her place. Rowan finished the whole thing off with a blessing on all present; and we adjourned to the Tavern for the celebration.

I am not letting Guunnar con me into drinking mead….

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