Chapter 2 - Best Friends

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Hello Friends!

As we start to dig deeper into the second book, it is important to note that the published version of Talon the Black (which won't be available until Feb. 28th) has some minor differences to the version you have read on Wattpad (plot is identical). Names of races were slightly tweaked, and some of the information divulged in a few conversations throughout the book was toned back and made slightly more obscure.

As far as names go, the Sprites are still the Sprites and Drengr are still Drengr. The dwarves are now the Dwargs, and the goblins are now the Gobelins. I decided to do this because it helped make my capitalization rules a little more clear-cut after doing hours of capitalization of races and tribes research.

Another difference (important for this chapter) lies in Talon's final chapter of TtB. During the announcement of Claire's royalty, Saffra originally told the court that she had a vision of Claire defeating Kane. That was too much of a big reveal. I changed it to be more obscure. Instead Saffra announces that she "...had a vision of Claire defeating Dragonwall's enemies." This new version can be read in the Wattpad version of TtB. This way no one assumes that Claire is meant to defeat Kane, which I'd like to keep a big secret to the other characters for now. Dragonwall has a number of enemies: the Vodar, the Gobelins, the pirates randomly raiding the shores, the wild dragons and Kane. This way Talon is left to assume that Claire will play an important role, but not necessarily THE MOST IMPORTANT role, even though we all know what her true role is.

The reason I have not put the full updated version of TtB on Wattpad is because in order to keep Talon the Black free on Wattpad, it must be different from the published version. The published version is the EDITED version and the Wattpad version is the UNEDITED version. This way I can justify providing it on Wattpad for free.

Okay, hopefully that helps minimize confusion as you go along.

Enjoy!

-Mel xx


Great Keep, Kastali Dun

Claire stepped through the double doors leading into the dining hall. At her coming, the happy chattering turned to silence. She paused, her heart hammering in her chest as hundreds of eyes turned to her. She desperately looked around for a familiar face. This was a difficult task under such intense scrutiny. Why today of all days, had she allowed herself to run late?

"Lady Claire, over here!" Saffra's warm voice was a welcome sound. She found the Seer and rushed forward, making her way through the hall. As she proceeded down the central aisle, a pair of silver eyes latched onto hers. King Talon sat at the head table. Beside him on each side were his Shields. The only empty chair at the table belonged to Cyrus.

Heat rushed to her cheeks under the king's fierce regard. She turned away, side stepping down a middle aisle towards Saffra. "I saved you a seat," Saffra said, beckoning her over. She quickly sat down, glad to sink out of sight and out of King Talon's scrutiny. The rest of the patrons in the hall slowly returned to their conversations. At last, the buzz reached a comfortable level.

"Thank you for rescuing me," she said, breathless. "I've been dreading this moment all day." This was the first time she put herself on display after King Talon's announcement of her change in status.

"You have nothing to fear, Claire. People owe you their respect."

"That may be true, yet I continue to receive scorn in the corridors—"

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