Chapter 16

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"It is a great opportunity," the Prince argued. Rhenycyn was adamant, his mind already made up.

The King gave his son a half frown. "I doubt that a visit from you would change much after all these years."

"It is a possibility," the Prince responded. "If he would even move from hostile to noncommittal it would be significant." Rhenycyn eyed his sister. "Ellycyn, what are your thoughts?"

The Princess had worn a cynical look ever since she was called to this meeting and did not put forth the effort to even pretend interest. "I think you are more than adept at worming your way into other people's lives and making them think what you want them to. Why should this instance be any different?"

Nherycyn raised an eyebrow but did not otherwise acknowledge his daughter's caustic remark. Then he inclined his head to his son.

Rhenycyn obviously had not anticipated his sister's reluctance to forgive and forget the episode between Mharkhel and himself. He had counted on her support but he continued on, undaunted. "I think he may secretly be pleased that I, on behalf of the crown, would attend his eightieth birthday party."

"Valdhon is not one easily influenced. He has been a member of the Ministry for…" the King stroked his beard while he tried to remember. Finally, he shook his head and dismissed it. "He does not take well to covert attempts at flattery and bribery. Your presence at his celebration may only incite him further."

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