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14. The Fat Lady

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Chapter 14. The Fat Lady

I received word today from Lahs that his army is assembled. I was surprised at his speed in gathering an army until I learned that King Roylance had already prepared everything before he died. The army was stationed in the land east of us and has located Brojan’s army. They are ready to begin the battle as soon as I send word.

***

“Jacob?” Aloren asked.

He rolled to face her. She was lying on her back, not making eye contact. “Yeah?”

“I, uh . . . I’m really glad you’re here,” she said.

Jacob couldn’t help it, but a sheepish grin crossed his face. “Uh, thanks. I’m . . . glad I’m here, too. Kind of.”

“We wouldn’t have made it if you hadn’t been able to see the Molg.”

Jacob’s smile grew, and he felt uncomfortable—not in a bad way, but more of an embarrassed way. So he changed the subject. “What if you never find your brother?”

Aloren rolled onto her side, facing Jacob and Akeno, and curled up into a ball. “I don’t know. I guess I’d have to find somewhere else to put my focus.”

“You could live in Taga with the Makalos,” Akeno said. “I’m sure we’d have plenty of room for you, and besides, you could probably even get to know the humans from Jacob’s world if you did.”

“From Jacob’s world? I thought he was from Eklaron.”

Jacob smiled. “Nope, I’m not.”

Aloren looked at him quizzically. “Where are you from, then?”

“Mars. Ha ha, just kidding. You probably don’t even know what that is. I come from . . . well, a different land, I guess.”

It took a few minutes for Jacob and Akeno to explain to Aloren the specifics of the link near Jacob’s home and how he ended up in the Makalo village.

“Wow—a completely different world?” Aloren looked lost in thought for a moment. “If I can’t find my brother, I want to visit your land.”

Jacob hid a smile and agreed to show her around town if she came.

Aloren turned over, and Jacob assumed she didn’t want to talk anymore and needed to rest. No dad around, and a mom who’d constantly been sick, then died. How would it be? Both of Jacob’s parents were very involved in his life. Sometimes too involved—but at least he didn’t often get lonely. Matt was almost always there when there was nothing to do—like now.

Jacob pulled the journal out and opened it, tilting it toward Akeno’s light. The other two wanted to sleep, and he wanted information.

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