Kiomo took a deep breath to calm the beating in his heart. In many
ways, this meeting with Bryvin would be far more difficult than the
one he had with Xelfin. **I hate my job today.**
He tapped on the door softly and at the summons came into the room.
"My Lord Bryvin," he said with a nod in greeting.
"Kiomo," Bryvin returned the nod. "What news?"
"Sir, I'm afraid I bring bad news." Kiomo closed the door softly
behind himself and walked into the room. He knew it was best to just
be straightforward with the Lord Holder. "I regret to inform you that
Xeladrie's child, that your daughter, has died."
"What?" Bryvin exploded out of his chair. "How?"
"The healers call it 'Sudden Infant Death'. It's unfortunately not
uncommon, and they have no way to predict or prevent it," Kiomo said
gently, his arms crossed behind his back and his eyes respectfully
lowered. "She just went to sleep and did not wake up."
Bryivin slapped his chair and sent it spinning across the room. Then
he leaned on both arms staring down at his desk. "Have them get my
ship ready to sail immediately." He pushed off the desk and walked
toward the window where he stared out at the bay one hand lifted to
his mouth as he struggled with the sudden grief. He hadn't even a
chance to see his daughter and she was gone.
Kiomo gave him a few moments of silence to let the information sink in
before speaking again. "My Lord, there is more. The Lady Xeladrie
is, of course, quite distraught. In fact, she seems to be a danger to
"What do you mean," Bryvin rounded on his assistant. "She has another
child here, She should come home. Brylex needs his mother." His brows
came together as he processed. "What do you mean she's a danger to
Kiomo raised his hands helplessly. "The shock, sir, of finding her
daughter dead. The guilt of feeling she has failed her child, the
inconsolable feeling that she should have somehow prevented this. It
doesn't matter what her father or the healers say. She believes she
is responsible for her daughter's death and seems to want to join
Visions of Elarie and her suicide flitted through Bryvin's mind and
his shoulders sagged. "Oh no," he said and covered his face with his
hands for a moment. Then he turned back around. "Her father would be
the best judge. Does he make a suggestion?"
"Having consulted mindhealers," Kiomo said, moving a little closer to
the Lord Holder, "it seems the best course of action is to quickly and
quietly bury the child so that Lady Xeladrie does not have to deal
with the reminder. And they would like to observe her a few more
days, but they do seem to be of a mind that if she does not improve
that a mindhealer's hall is the best option for her. At least for the
No matter what he was now, at one time he had been a romantic young
man in love with a beautiful girl. Until Xelfin had changed all that.
And now here he was again meddling in Bryvin's affairs. That beautiful
girl had thrown herself onto the rocks below Xelfin's Hold and much as
he wasn't in love with her sister, his wife, he didn't wish her dead
on the same rocks. "Yes," he said and waved a hand in Kiomo's general
direction. "Do it. But I want direct contact with the mind healers,
Xelfin's too gullible. I want her treated not coddled."
"I shall see to it right away, my Lord," Kiomo said with a bow of
acknowledgment. "With your permission, then..."
"Yes, Oh and Kiomo," Bryvin said without turning. "Make sure my... Xelbry," he
said the name with difficulty, "has flowers, lots of them."
He continued gazing out of the window for some time though he didn't
really see anything outside of it. His thoughts were for the daughter
he'd never know.
Last updated on the May 4th 2019