Inheritance - Chapter 9 - Good News

  • “Oh no reason, it’s just that that’s my younger brother she’s talking to.” She knew that plenty of Dunmer had fled to Riften as well as Windhelm after Red Mountain erupted, but she had never expected to see one as thane of either city. “Could you tell me anything about the Thane?”

    “Don’t see why I can’t. About ten-fifteen years ago she helped the Jarl by destroying a skooma den and so she was rewarded with the title of Thane. Some claim it was also because she’s Maven’s personal assassin, but I wouldn’t hold anything to that if I were you.” The Argonian paused and glanced back over at Alarne and his company; the Dunmer now had his hands clasped in hers.

    “Why do you say that? Is there any truth behind it?”

    The Argonian was silent for a while, as though she was thinking “It’s dangerous to spread rumours like those around is all and any way I’d say it’s the other way around. Maven used to be feared; a lot of us were afraid that when she came into power she would abuse it and make it even harder for those of us living here. Yet after she…” she gestured over towards Alarne and the Dunmer “…was named thane Maven changed.”

    Sofie vaguely remembered times when she would hear shouting coming from their father’s study; it had been well known in Solitude that the Dragonborn didn’t agree with Maven being appointed Jarl of Riften, at the time she hadn’t known why; but if what she had just been told was true then she could see why.

    Her thoughts were interrupted by the sound of the Argonian clearing her throat; it sounded more like a growl then what she would have liked to hear coming from someone. She realised that she hadn’t said anything for a while and the bartender was probably starting to wonder if she was going to buy something or if she was going to continue to just sit there.

    “Uh sorry, thank you for everything” Sofie stood giving an apologetic smile and then turned to leave.

    As she turned she came face to face with the Dunmer who had been talking to her brother; this she realised was why the Argonian’s attitude had changed so suddenly.

    At the uneasy look on her face the Dunmer spoke “Good day Sofie, I’m sorry for keeping your brother from you but I believe it was necessary. Now if you’ll excuse me I need to go and speak with the Jarl. Keerava” She gave the slightest nod in the direction of the Argonian and then was gone.

    Looking over her shoulder Sofie could see that Keerava was just as stunned as she was at the Thane’s disappearance.

    She jumped as she felt a hand grasp her shoulder “Sofie it’s alright it’s just me, Alarne. I was starting to worry that the priests would never let you out.”

    Alarne stood next to her with a massive grin across his face; from what she had been told by Runa this was completely at odds with what she had been expecting. Whatever the Thane had told him seemed to have rekindled the joy in him.

    “Sorry for startling you, still rattled after the battle huh?”

    “Uh yeah a little, but I think I’ll be fine now. How about you? Runa said you hadn’t been taking it well and I was worried that you may be struggling with the fog.”

    She could have sworn that for the slightest moment Alarne’s face took on a much darker expression than she was used to seeing from her brother, but before she could comment it was gone and he was looking at her with a look of gratitude.

    “Thank you for the concern. To be honest before I saw you standing here it was starting to get unbearable, but now that you’re here and the four of us a back together I think I’ll be able to deal with it.” The smile that stole across his face was enough to reassure her and to prevent any more questions; she had no wish to cause the return of the darkness she was certain she had seen.

    Alarne lead her over to the table where she had seen him talking to the Dunmer, and sat down across from her.

    “I noticed you were talking to the Thane, what was it she wanted?” she couldn’t help it she needed to know what someone able to influence a person like Maven, had wanted with her brother.

    A look of surprise rose on Alarne’s face “She’s the Thane? She didn’t really tell me much about herself just that she knew dad.”

    “Wait, she knew dad? How? Was she able to tell you anything about what happened to him?”

    “All she told me was that they ‘worked’ together before he learned he was Dragonborn. Apparently she searched for him as well but wasn’t able to find much, but she did give me a new lead that she thinks will help.”

    It didn’t make any sense to her, if the Thane had been unable to find anything how was a lead she had going to be of any use to them? And so she asked Alarne just that.

    “She said something about the person I am and the people around me giving her hope that we might find what we’re looking for or something.” He said this as though it made perfect sense and perhaps to him, who was the son of the Dragonborn there would always be the hope that he would be able to measure up. It was different for her and Runa; while people knew that they were the Dragonborn’s daughters they also knew that they were adopted and had never expected them to be as great as their father.

    Yet she couldn’t figure it out, this person was supposedly powerful enough to collar Maven and where she had failed they were expected to succeed?

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