Continued from A Knight’s Prayer Part 1.
A Knight’s Prayer
Sir Gabriel blinked then stared down at the elf wrapped in his tabard. “It’s not what you think. I didn’t-”
Leopold chuckled. “Unless you’re an elf, I know you didn’t.”
Relief loosened Sir Gabriel’s shoulders. “She couldn’t have been more than a few weeks old when I found her. I was walking along the sea as part of my rehabilitation and found her among the wreckage of a ship.”
“So you brought her back with you.” Sir Leopold bit back a smile. Sometimes the gods gave you what needed in the strangest of ways.
“I’ve been searching for her family since I found her, but I haven’t found them yet.”
“Can’t be easy taking care of a child by yourself with your duties and working on healing that leg.”
“I’ve been very fortunate. People have been willing to help. Thalia’s compassion beats strong in Tamryn.”
Sir Leopold chuckled as he watched the tall, broad-shouldered Knight gently brush a lock of hair from the little girl’s cheek. Thalia may play a part in people’s willingness to help, but he suspected the Twins had a hand in it, too.
“I brought her to Aerius at King Eli’s request.”
“King Eli?” Leopold’s brows shot up. “What does he want with a foundling elf?”
“I’m not sure, but I’m supposed to be meeting with him and Queen Auburn.”
Leopold leaned back against the pew. That meant Auburn had a vision. One strong enough and with big enough implications that Eli felt it necessary to investigate. Both interesting and terrifying. The elves were formidable but isolated.
Or they had been.
And he’d preferred it stayed that way. The fewer uncertainties the better while dealing with the eastern provinces.
“Tell me when you go meet with King Eli. I’ll come along with you. He can’t intimidate me no matter how much he tries.”
“I’m afraid he’ll tell me to send her away.” Sir Gabriel tucked his tabard around the child. “I don’t know where I’d send her. I’ve tried everything I can to find her family.”
“They may not want to be found. Elves are an odd bunch.”
“You’ve met them?”
“A few times, though none that look like this one.”
Sir Gabriel cupped her tiny hand in his. “There’s something else you should know. Her eyes aren’t human.”
“Of course they’re not. She’s an elf.”
“They seem to glow.”
“Like I said, elves are an odd bunch. Never met one that wasn’t more than twice my age, and most were a lot older than that. Maybe all of their eyes almost glow as children.”
“I hadn’t thought of that.”
Sir Leopold pushed himself to his feet. “Staying in the barracks while you’re here in Aerius?”
Sir Gabriel nodded.
“You’re not anymore. Get your horse. You’re gonna come stay with me, and I’ll introduce you to Marcus and Brelynn.”
The young Knight’s eyes widened. “But Sir Marcus-”
“Is a good man who’ll help Brelynn spoil Aurora. Might even catch Mara spoiling her when she thinks no one is looking.” Sir Leopold knelt before the altar to Dracor as Gabriel stared at him, whispered a prayer, then straightened. He nodded toward the young Knight. “Don’t make me make it an order.”
Sir Gabriel gathered up Aurora and cradled her against his chest as he pushed himself back to his feet without his cane.
Sir Leopold smiled. Boy had a long way to go, but the gods were on his side.
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