Kesten just looks and shakes his head, “I’ll see if I can talk to any of the others. Oh, and nothing permanent. We may be working with them longer than anticipated if my contacts are correct.”
I nod. Then turn back to teaching Glyn not to disrespect me. So let’s just shave the top of his head.
“Allow me to introduce myself,” I say to his mostly unconscious body, “the name is Brandi. Brandi with an i.”
I walk out into the courtyard at Oleg’s, its a nice night, no clouds in the sky and the stars are really beautiful.
“What in Asmodeus’s name!”, I find myself flat on my face having tripped over something.
“Oh, the dancing married elf…”, I say mostly to myself.
“I have been known to dance with a fair maiden now and again but I’ve never had the misfortune of marrying. Although I must admit that once I thought I had the misfortune of not marrying. Let me help you up. My name is Talreth Teasen’rretyn.”
For a man that tall, he weights almost nothing I discover as I pull him down on top of me. I roll on top of him, I think he’s trying to utter some apology or something like that but I guess my tongue in his mouth is making that a bit difficult…
“Mikmek, I know you are around somewhere!”, the Baron growls and Mikmek appears almost instantly, “Can you arrange for one of the servants to have a great deal of wine brought to my chambers?”
“Yes, Barron Tali”, Mikmek bows and departs with haste.
“Ah Oleg, just the man I was looking for”, says Grigori, “Do you know anything about the wine shortage in town? It seems a group of kobolds have bought every last bottle of it. As well most of the beer seems to be gone…”
“Excuse me Baron, Brandi is here to see you.”
“I’ve a lot o’ wine already. Few gasses of bandy can’t ’urt…”
I look down at Tali as he sits on the floor surrounded in wine bottles. I grab the bowl of water sitting on the side table and dump it down on top of him.
Talreth looks up blearily, “Brandi?”
I help him out of his clothes and get him in to bed. It is a while before he does anything other than just hold me…
“Ildrim, if you wouldn’t mind, could I have a few minutes of your time?”
“Greetings Aleric, I’ve been looking for Duke Talreth but I always can make time for you.”
“I hadn’t had the chance to talk with the Duke before he left but he had felt the need for me to accompany Brandi on her voyage with the caravan. he was worried about her safety. He said that she is not as able to defend herself as she currently thinks. I am starting to think that he was right in this matter and that I should go. I would be honored if you could take my place on the council so that I can look over this family matter.”
“General, Baron Ildrim has given you his rod, he said it was hard to part with but he wanted to give it to you.”, the guard bows attempting to hide his grin.
Brandi ignores the now unconscious guard, grabs the rod and looks down at the bed next to her.
“General, who is that half-elven child in the bed?”
Brandi turns in surprise to the door to see Baroness Soletha standing in the open doorway.
“Greetings Baroness. That is my son, Ellis.”, she bows.
“You’ve been sleeping with my husband.”
“The child was conceived by the former Duke of Tuskany, Talreth Teasen’rretyn.”
“You didn’t deny my accusation. I heard the guards words.”
“Baron Ildrim gave me the Rod of Lordly Might to help me in my duties.”
“Oh, I’m sure Ildrim will have given it some such impressive name, and made it seem like getting laid may help you in your duties. Or maybe laying with my husband is part of your duties.”
“Baroness”, Brandi drops to one knee, “Honestly, I have never slept with Baron Ildrim, I didn’t want this job and I don’t look forward to risking my life facing the army outside the city tomorrow knowing that I may leave my child an orphan.”
“Well, if you haven’t slept with him, then you may be the only woman on the Freeport council other than my mother who hasn’t. I guess that is considerate of my husband. I know for a fact that he has bedded both the Lady Maray and the High Priestess of pleasure. It is rather unfair of my husband that he put so many women on the council and so few men only Jubilost, Lord Numesti and Sigmar. Lord Numesti has been serviceable enough, the lonely widower. I’d never stoop to sleeping with a Gnome. Oh, Sigmar would be such a catch if only he wasn’t so rigid, in personality I mean. I haven’t gotten close enough to him to find out if he’s that rigid in other ways.”
“Duke Talreth, Brandi is here to see you.”
“Send her in.”, Tali stands from his desk where he was looking at the latest books from Oleg.
“Its good to see you Brandi. To what do I owe this pleasure?”, Tali says with a wink.
“Duke Talreth”, Brandi curtsies, “I’m not here to lay with you today. I’m pregnant with your child.”
Tali staggers and barely manages to grab a chair to keep himself from falling. He replaces the chair, reaches into his bag of holding and turns to face Brandi.
“Brandi, will you marry me? Be my wife, the Duchess of Tuskany. Do not let another of my children be raised fatherless.”, Talreth declares from one knee holding out the ring he had retrieved.
“Tali, I don’t want to marry you. I’m happy in my life in Olegton. I don’t want to live in a castle and rule a kingdom. I enjoy my freedom.”
“What is it with women not wanting to be a Duchess. If only I were a Prince. Don’t you all dream of being Princesses? And what is it with the mothers of my children?”, Tali walks across the room and looks out the window.
Brandi walks up to Tali and holds onto him, “I guess I should have said I didn’t only come here to lay with you today…”