Lesson 9

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After Grielle returned to report on the condition of her brother, she sent Benedikt to her cabin to monitor Ludvig's progress

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After Grielle returned to report on the condition of her brother, she sent Benedikt to her cabin to monitor Ludvig's progress. He arrived to find Reyn beside the bed, dabbing the gash on Ludvig's head with a damp cloth. They had all sustained cuts and scrapes here and there, but Ludvig seemed to have caught the worst blow. Benedikt took a seat beside Reyn and watched her press the cloth against Ludvig's still forehead.

"I think he'll be okay," Reyn said, her voice calm and measured.

"He looks bad, but I think you're right," Benedikt replied.

"He'll have a wicked scar though." Reyn laughed faintly. "He'll be so upset; he's terribly vain."

A few hours later Yorick entered the stateroom and assessed Ludvig's condition. He applied something earthy smelling to the injury, then went to get some rest of his own. Benedikt had barely slept since they were taken hostage and his entire body ached for it. He eventually sank into a dreamless sleep in the chair of Grielle's drafting desk and didn't awake until nightfall. The fresh breeze through the stateroom door ruffled his hair, bringing him back from his heavy slumber. He obliged his rumbling stomach and wandered to the galley.

The dinner hour had come and gone while he slept, but Moose had left a hunk of bread, a wedge of cheese, and an apple on a scrap of parchment with his name written in flowing script. Benedikt shook his head in amusement at the mountainous man who grumbled over a lack of cooking spices and also had a knack for fine penmanship. He sated his hunger then returned to his room.

With nothing but the open sea around them, he lay in his own bed, and drifted back to sleep.

~

A gull's harsh squawk woke Benedikt with a start. He squinted at the bright daylight coming in through the stateroom windows, then he heard the sound of voices in the room next door. He slipped from his bed and padded out his door.

Grielle stood outside her own room. She gave him a feeble smile before she entered and crossed over to the bed. Benedikt moved into the doorway but didn't go all the way in. This felt like a private moment.

Ludvig seemed to stir now. Grielle took a knee beside Reyn and grasped Ludvig's hand. "How are you?" she whispered. A soft grin spread on her lips.

"My head is killing me." Even flat on his back, Ludvig wore a casual and yet still dashing smile.

"Yeah, he's fine." Reyn rolled her eyes toward Grielle.

"Good, because we are set to arrive in Andor in several hours," Grielle said.

Ludvig's eyes filled with concern as he watched Grielle. He gave her a look that meant something Benedikt didn't understand, but the silent interchange hadn't escaped his notice.

Grielle caught Benedikt's gaze and cleared her throat. She stood and abruptly quitted the room. Even Ludvig and Reyn seemed surprised.

"Captain?" Benedikt stood as she breezed past him. He followed her out into the morning air.

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