1475 DERAGAN - A Reprieve
England, UpperLands (sixty-seven years immortal)
Deragan’s troupe had lived scattered over England for the last several decades, but Radix slowly used his Nonis, rat like minions sufficing as all-seeing eyes. They’ve crowded us to the north shore. Hiding in filthy docks.
So, tonight, in an effort to unwind, Deragan had arranged for them to attend a nearby ball.
As they arrived, their hostess met them. “Welcome My Lords. I’m delighted so many prosperous gentlemen deigned visit my daughter’s come-out ball!”
Over the last sixty-some years, they’d accrued titles and fortunes. Easy to do, with so much time on our hands. Deragan thought dryly.
The hostess gestured for them to enter the Main Room.
The Captain looked around. We’re all giants compared to the men already down in that Ballroom.
Men from another time…He mused. Proud to stand among the towering figures.
All eyes turned to them and the silence descended like a cloud. Even the minstrels paused.
The pack of men cloistered around Deragan blinking patiently.
Women stared hungrily.
Men shifted uncomfortably, watching them as clear competition.
But Deragan's knights in all their finery and towering figures were statue-still.
Waiting for my permission. Deragan waved a hand and they scattered to the Dancefloor.
They instantly crowding close around Sebastian as they descended to the lower room.
They’re trying to keep him hidden from view. He was amused. Clever. I wonder whose plan that was. He glimpsed Lucien waving his hands to keep them tight around Sebastian.
Ever the tactician.
Once the majority of the knights had dance partners, Sebastian quite full of being pinned in, pushed through them.
The other knights looked nervously at the women then back at Sebastian, disappointed so many feminine gazes had landed on the man. Their voices rising in excitement at the sight of him.
Deragan chuckled. Once they’ve seen him, they always turn to silk in his hands.
It was a good idea to bring them here. Deragan credited himself for their brief happiness. Enjoying their smiles. Proud of these men he called brethren. Men I spent hours hand training for battle. All with the expectation we’d die in the next few years.
They’d long since found they were not so easily killed as they used to be. But not indestructible either.
Deciding to step out for some fresh air, he traveled to the open side door.
A black-haired man fell into step next to him. “What are you thinking, Captain?”
“I’m thinking it’s nice watching them laugh, and drink and dance, Chavias.”
“You still blame yourself for what we are?” Chavias eyed him shrewdly as they rounded the vined arc into the abandoned garden.
“You know I do.”
“I know you should not.”