So. Make this work. What do we know about Valdemar?
At the moment, very little. Betony had been willing to share all she knew, but a young weaver who’d never traveled didn’t know much. Rethwellan and Valdemar had been allies for generations, in peace and in war, to the point Queen Selenay’s white-clad messenger Heralds were trusted even when they crossed the border. When the kingdom of Hardorn had declared war on Valdemar seven years ago, King Faram had sent Prince Daren himself along with armed divisions and the mercenary Skybolts to Queen Selenay’s aid. The battle had been won, the prince had stayed, and married the queen; they ruled Valdemar together now, and had two young heirs full of bright promise for a continued alliance between their kingdoms.
Yet rumors said Valdemar was still fighting skirmishes with Ancar of Hardorn, every year. And there were darker rumors. Though Betony hadn’t believed crazy travelers’ spooky stories about Ancar’s armies being made of the living dead. Not while she was alive.
Looking into Wei Wuxian’s mind, as he’d looked into hers….
Wen Ruohan found ways to steal minds and wills. Why should he be the only one?
Wen Ning touched down and stopped, finally setting him on his feet. “They’re not coming this way. L-let’s not scare everyone.”
Not yet, Wei Wuxian added silently, tucking their foundling against his shoulder to straighten his robes. Everyone already knew they had to leave quickly. Breaking camp would go faster if no one panicked. “Is your sister going to be angry?” he wondered as they started walking. “She’s the closest thing we have to a sect leader, picking up orphans should be her decision….”
Oh no. Not the eyes. “But you’re her heir,” Wei Wuxian hurried on, “until she finds someone incredibly brave and good to give her all the children she wants, so it’s your decision too-”
Wen Ning’s lips twitched. “You didn’t say handsome.”
“Eh?” Wei Wuxian switched arms, shaking feeling back into his left hand after their wild flight. He could see horses now, and the bobbing lanterns of people making sure the last loads were packed; he’d need to play to activate the array as soon as everyone was ready. “Well of course your sister’s husband should be handsome. But Wen Qing’s got more sense than four sect leaders put together. When she finds the man she wants, he’s going to be smart, kind, and tougher than a Nie fortress. What’s looks next to that?”