Chapter Thirty Two: Jasmine

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We couldn't wait for the meetings to finish before telling them. Instead, Imogen went in and whispered furiously to Brae for a few seconds. He stood up and made his apologies about having to leave temporarily. Cameron and Devon came with him. If anyone thought their sudden disappearance was untoward they didn't show any sign of it. There were very few Helians in the room and Roxy was the only one who showed an interest in him leaving. I watched from outside as her eyes followed him out the door.

We didn't say anything until we were back in our room and even then it was only in hushed whispers.

"I can't believe I missed that! You had such an adventure!" Devon gushed, her eyes wide.

Cameron was more serious: "We should leave now. Get on the first non-Helian ship we find and get the air out of here!"

"My father's ship is still docked in the harbour - we can take that," Brody said at once. He had stayed back in the room while we were investigating, ready with an excuse if anyone had asked after us.

"We can't just walk straight out the front door - we'll need to do it at night. And we still need to warn the Brizans and Sephans - even more so now that we know Lorelie isn't herself. We do need to move fast though, before any of the others are Controlled too." Brae was all authority.

"How do we know they haven't already?" Imogen asked nervously.

"I don't think they will have. Lorelie was the youngest Brizan, the easiest target - they'll have started with her. Plus everyone else was in the meetings this morning and they seemed themselves; I thought Erica was going to murder Cinaer at one point. The idiot can't keep his mouth shut for more than a minute." He shook his head.

"We need to tell them now," I said.

"As soon as the meetings are over and as casually as possible. I suggest we approach Erica and Rowan and let them take care of the rest of their people. We need to make them aware that their attendants might be under Control, so they need to leave without saying too much to them. Jazz, can I have a word?" He beckoned me over to the window, leaving the other four to talk amongst themselves. "I need you to talk to Erica and Rowan. Tell them what you heard. If Lorelie asks them anything out-of-character that should be proof enough. Tell them about your dreams if you have to. Erica is very wary, so I think she'll believe you without needing proof."

I was shocked. "But what about you?"

He looked unsure. "There's something else I need to do before we leave."

"But you're the one who's good at giving speeches Brae, not me and they trust you. They'll listen to what you tell them."

"You're going to have to make them listen to you. And the others can help. I really need to do this."

"But what could be more important than-"

"Just trust me, Jasmine, please, as my friend. The way that I trusted you with your dreams. There's something I need to do before I can leave here."

I nodded, seeing that it would be impossible to argue with him, even though I had a good idea what it was that he wanted to do and it was going to put him at even greater risk. He was right, after all: he had trusted me, so now I had to trust him.

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