Listross’s stern eyes flashed between Emmya and Eppra. “Fine.” He drew his weapon. “Come men, let’s go take this city. We’ll enslave the Ferronians as they’ve enslaved us.” Eppra let out the breath she was holding and gave Listross a small smile. “Thank you.” “Bolfreed, take Emmya to Tales, and make sure she stays there. The rest of you, grab a weapon. When we go in, we will make a point to not kill. If the Ferronians resist, bind them. Flouth, grab the rope.” “Got it, Prince.” “But Daddy!” Bolfreed hoisted Emmya as she reached towards Listross. Listross turned his back as Bolfreed started jogging off. “I love you, Emmya. Just stay with Tales. You’ll be fine” Grink strode over and pointed at Eppra. “Your family lords over this town, correct?” Eppra gave a single nod. “Then, Prince Listross, I suggest you select three others to march with you to take that house. It’ll be a sign of power. Have the rest of the men position themselves in the city.” “If you’re breaking into teams, I’d send one to the blacksmith, one to the innkeeper, and one to the Rigor Farm. They have the most renown in town, that is, besides my father.” “Grink, take the blacksmith. Flouth, the innkeeper. Rawruin, the farm.” “Yes, Prince,” the three men saluted in unison. Listross thrust his blade into the air before marching. Eppra led her horse by his side through the forest to the city.
Listross turned back to her, brow furrowed deep. “You really want to help?” Eppra nodded, meeting Listross’s eyes with boldness. “Then this is what I want from you.” Listross sheathed his weapon. “Go. Take your horse and ride back to those men. Tell them there’s nothing this way and convince them to ride back into the city. After the moon has risen and candles are blown out, take the weapons your village has and bring them here. Bolfreed will be trailing you, and if you stray, his arrow won’t.” Eppra slowly nodded. “It will be done.” “Let her go, Thyrin.” Thyrin gave Listross a concerned look, but let her go. Immediately, Eppra took her horse’s reins and skillfully mounted. Thyrin watched her and whispered to Listross. “Are you actually going to trust her?” Listross glanced at Thyrin, and held up his finger. Eppra looked back at the group. “Everything will be done as you asked, but I ask that you look favorably on me and my town.”
Listross hoisted Emmya off his shoulders and set her down on the grass. “You’re getting a little big for this. I can’t believe you’ll be five next week.” “Daddy?” Emmya took his hand and walked next to him. Over the past few days, they traveled slow. Some god must have found favor with Listross and had preserved the map from the flames that took the manor house. They used it to avoid any cities or large plantations but did plan to make another raid soon. Grink had suggested they try to acquire more men to find greater favor with the ruler of Sholance. On top of that, Listross knew he needed rest. The wound on his arm had already opened up once from trying to do too much. He was in no condition to battle. “Yes, dear?” Listross rubbed the back of his neck and scanned over the group of Tavalskians in front of him. “I don’t want another extra potato for my birthday this year.” Listross smiled. “What do you want?” Emmya stopped walking and looked down. “I want mama to come back.”