6. Choosing messenger

After warning even man present in the courtroom, Raelynn went back to her seat. However, she continued standing. She was yet to put forth her points towards the Lord. "My Lord, it is best that we declare war on them soon. Our enemy kingdom is using underhand tactics to get to us and I am sure everybody here to knows about it too. So, why should we waste time in sending a treaty of peace to them when we are sure that they will not accept it?"

Minister Rowen could not sit still anymore after hearing this. "Young Lady, we are concerned about the lives of our soldiers as well as our people. We could try our attempt at the truce. If things do not go well, we can wage a war against them." Everybody accepted his words this time and they nodded at him.

"If everybody agrees to this solution, then I have no problems with it. But let me warn you beforehand that I will not take responsibility if things go wrong in the future. Also, I have something else to inform the Lord." Raelynn became silent and cast a glance across the courtroom. "We have noticed spies keeping a watch on our battalions. Though I am not sure how they managed to enter in, we have captured two of them in the East Batallion and they were from the enemy side."

This time, even Lord Eldrick was taken aback by her words. He wondered why nobody had informed him about it when this issue was more important and considerably dangerous. Sending spies to the enemy army was the worst kind of tactic anybody could use. This way, the enemy could find out their war strategies and weaknesses and they could train themselves accordingly.

"Why was I not informed about this?" The Lord seethed, his eyes glaring at the four commanders, including Raeylnn. 

"My Lord, we caught the two men just in the early hours of dawn today and we are yet to interrogate them thoroughly," Laurier answered this time, breaking the killing the silence in the courtroom.

"Did the other battalions too face the same issue? Are there spies in your team too?" The Lord continued, ignoring Laurier's words. 

"That," Although the men wanted to deny it to save themselves from the Lord's wrath, they could not ignore that this was an issue related to their kingdom. So, the North Battalion Commander stood up, bowed, and gave the answer. "Yes, my Lord. We have faced the same problem too and just like Commander Roosevelt, we too found out about them today."

"It seems that the spies have entered only recently. Otherwise, given your intelligence and shrewd eyes, they could not have survived this long. Make a list of all the people who have entered the army recently and do a thorough background check on them." Eldrick ordered and all the four commanders nodded at him, three of them sighing in relief.

"Now that the issue has escalated to this level with our enemies sending spies to keep an eye on us, we cannot help but prepare for war. However, it is the war etiquette to send a treaty of peace before the war begins. We will send a message to them and in the meanwhile, the army can prepare for war."

Eldrick had taken this decision after listening to everybody's suggestion. Although he preferred to go along with Raelynn and Cathal's method, he could not ignore the other members of his court and take sides with the two. He had to appease all the ministers. Hence, he had come up with such a method. However, he knew that sending someone to the rival kingdom of Hollis would only be a waste of time.

Eldrick's suggestion seemed to be fair and everybody accepted with any complaints. Even Raelynn was forced to accept it, though she knew the truth as to why the Lord had put for such a solution. Now, another issue popped up. Who was going to be the messenger? The person who would be sent as a messenger had to be highly smart and intelligent to grasp their enemy's wickedness and weakness. Also, he had to make sure that he would not lose to them in a verbal or a physical battle.

Although it was against the ethical norms to attack a messenger and was considered to be a great sin, Lord Eldrick did not want to take risks. So, they wanted someone who knew how to defend himself. Everybody started to put forth names they deemed to fit the role of a messenger.

Raelynn again put on a bored look as she waited for the session to end. She had done her job for now. However, her ears perked up when she heard somebody put forth her name to be a messenger and to her dismay, it was the man she had thought a lesson a few minutes back, Minister Erebus. 

The man had not stopped provoking her even though she had given him a befitting reply. She could see the man's vicious gaze when he had turned to look at her and her eyes narrowed automatically. This time, Lord Eldrick took it upon himself to shut the man's mouth. He could see that the minister was targeting Raelynn and how could he allow something like that to happen?

"Minister Erebus, I think your memory power is declining over the years although you are still in your thirties. How can you forget that any Commander or a Knight Commander can never go as a messenger to another kingdom? It is against the rules of battle." Eldrick did not sugar coat his words and chided the man in front of everyone, making the man go red in shame. But he could not do anything as it was the Lord who had reprimanded him. He did not speak another word lest he should be insulted anymore.

After a lot of discussion, the court decided for Cathal Bringe to be the messenger. He was wise and sharp and he also knew to yield the sword quite well. Even Raeylnn did not have a problem with him being the messenger, although she was not sure why she had a bad inkling towards the man. The man just screamed danger to her even from where he was.

The session ended after a few minutes of discussing relevant issues and everybody left the room one by one after the Lord. Raelynn turned to look at Cathal only to find him already staring at her. He smiled at her politely and she returned the courtesy. Neither of them spoke to each other and Raelynn left the room first, with Laurier right behind her.

They had just stepped out of the room when Raelynn stopped in the feet and turned suddenly to face Laurier, startling him by her sudden move. "Could you wait for me here? I need to be somewhere. I will be back in a while." Before the man could even speak, Raelynn had already taken off like a thunderbolt and had disappeared across the corridor. Her actions only made his suspicions true and his brows narrowed further.

Meanwhile, Raelynn had no idea what was running in Laurier's mind. She was more interested in finding the person she had been missing for a long time. She knew where the man would be and Raelynn followed the path she was all too familiar with. Taking a deep breath, she knocked at the door, her eyes gleaming in anticipation. 

The door and she saw the man she had come here looking for. Without wasting another second, she lunged forward and hugged him tightly. "I missed you, Brother Eldrick."

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Miranda Petterson
some arrogant battalion leaderūüėí

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