“Surely not, Mother!” she gasped, snapping a fan open in surprise.
“It seems so, my dear. Most unfortunate, no?” The Queen sipped quietly from the teacup in her lap.
“Oh, that is most awful. I think I will go and rest a while, this news is most troubling,” was her reply, curtsying properly before leaving the room.
The problem with her mother was, it was sometimes hard to tell truth from scheme. Dabrose would never have lied to her, but there might have been a misunderstanding at the records office. She needed to find out exactly what was wrong, and took a left turn at the end of the corridor accordingly.
There was a brief puff of air, some movement – and one of the high windows shattered to her right. For a moment, she stood stock-still in a panic, then one of the Queensguard firmly pushed her to the floor while his partner fired a crossbow out through the broken window.
The crossbowman sighed and shook his head a moment later.
“Gone. Kindly help Lady Phaedra to her feet, Libreta.”