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Two

By December 25, 2017IC

The sun beamed down through the clear sky onto the ramparts overlooking the castle’s gardens. Ura could feel its warmth on the top of his balding scalp, a recent development that he had intended to fix as soon as he found the spellbook stuffed away somewhere in his office. He watched the people below as they meandered on stone paths through the branches of willow trees and spring’s first rose bushes. He was their King now.

“I knew I might find you here,” said Aismon. He wiped the spittle from his chin and smiled the same jagged smile Ura had known since he first met the urchin as a boy. “I’m surprised you’re not in the markets reveling in your newfound inheritance,” he continued.

“My inheritance is the work left to do around the Kingdom that my father could not complete in his many years,” replied Ura.

“Yes sir,” said Aismon, “your father’s legacy is now written in stone. The bountiful harvests, the security of the City of Meridia from threats inside and out, and the victory over the invading armies from the White Sea. But his victories were born of your efforts, and henceforth so shall you reap your own rewards.”

“So I shall,” Ura said dismissively.

Ura pulled back his sleeves and rubbed the subdermal crystalline implant between his fingers. The view from scrying orb above the streets of the market showed a group of Undertow sympathizers, the detritus of the streets, banners raised high in the air, proclaiming the King’s downfall a “sign from God.”

He motioned Aismon to follow and began heading down the ramparts, towards the center of town.