There were five hundred fifty-six stones that made up the ceiling. Nimrad had counted them many times as he lay on his cot, waiting. He wasn’t quite sure how long he had been locked in this room. He wasn’t even sure where he was. They had moved him from the holding cells at the Court of Truth some time ago, placing him in this sullen and wretched place.

“They know,” a voice spoke from the darkness.

Nimrad was startled from his thoughts, “Who’s that?”

The other man only responded with a short cackle.

“Who is that!?” Nimrad was becoming agitated now. The long period of darkness, his inability to see or identify the person speaking to him, the moldy dampness overwhelming his senses. It was all becoming too much for him. They had no real cause for holding him here. But they know he is up to something, and will hold him without an accusation until they can find out what it is.

His thoughts trailed back to the voice in the darkness, What did the voice mean? They cannot know. They don’t know. If Dawn and her Guard had the slightest knowledge of what was at stake, I wouldn’t be rotting away in this cell.

Nimrad jumped from his cot at the sudden sound of footsteps. A light step, certainly not one of the royal thugs. It was so dark the being was only inches from the barred door that held Nimrad in this room before he could see it. Her. Even in the darkness he could recognize that gaudy cloak of hers. The Queen.

Nimrad gave a mocking bow, “Your Highness.”

“Nimrad,” Dawn only grinned at his flippant response towards her. “How are you doing here?” No doubt a touch at sarcasm, herself.

“I thought I felt a mushroom growing out of my ear,” Nimrad sighed. “This place is going to kill me. Neither you or your Guard has asked me a single question! Why are you keeping me here?” His voice was cracking, he was obviously becoming ill.

This fact did not get past Dawn, “I am sorry, Nimrad,” she shrugged. “We’ve no idea where to begin. You are one piece that just doesn’t seem to fit the puzzle. But your dangerous experiments have been witnessed by many the many Britannians you reached out to for aid. We don’t know who, or what, you are, and that makes releasing someone in your state too much of a gamble.”

Nimrad couldn’t believe what he was hearing. They really didn’t know what it was he was up to. He is both overjoyed and saddened by the fact. For if they are willing to lock him away whilst ignorant to his plans, then they’d certaintly never let him see light again if they did know. He merely returned to his cot without another word.

“We are going to move you soon, Nimrad. This place will kill you,” at that Dawn turned and disappeared back from where she came.

Several minutes passed and much of the stress Nimrad felt was waning. After all, he still had the perfect bargain to secure his release. His alchemical secrets.

The voice from the darkness returned again, “They know, Nimrad. They’re coming for us.”

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