- 4th day of Hanotë -
Part 2 - Searching in Vain
Elian took a deep breath. He’d already given all the necessary orders and taken care of everything he could remember that needed to be done in order to ensure that things could go on progressing smoothly during his absence. However his thoughts were constantly drifting away. He had left word in the palace that Allana should be informed that he’d like to see her but, up till then, nothing …
Someone knocked lightly at his door and a tall, strong Knight peered inside.
“Elian, Denar asks me to inform you that everything is ready.”
“Thank you, Lamar. Please tell him I won’t be long. There’s only one last thing I have to do before we leave,” Lamar nodded and left him without a word, and Elian went back into the palace.
He searched all the common rooms and inner gardens, and even her bedroom, all the while trying his best to avoid engaging in conversation with those who crossed his path, sometimes even being uncharacteristically rude and indelicate in the way he answered them. But he simply couldn’t find her. Finally he saw Selina, dressed in a beautiful dark-green velvet dress, sitting by a tall window as she smiled at the three young men that surrounded her, apparently unable to avert their gazes from her deep neckline.
“Selina! Where’s Allana?” he asked, unceremoniously, and the young men shot too their feet and bowed awkwardly, their faces turning red.
“Your Highness,” Selina greeted him with a light curtsy of her head and smiled calmly. “I’m afraid I haven’t seen her since morning. Maybe she’s keeping to her quarters,” she suggested innocently. “But if it pleases you I could go and see …”
“There’s no need. She’s not there,” he told her and sighed disheartened.
“If you’d like me to pass her a message …”
“No, there’s no need. Thank you all the same,” he told her and turned to leave the same way he’d just arrived.
“My dearests, I’m truly sorry but I’ll have to take my leave for now,” she told the three young men and stood up, although they practically begged her to stay. Gathering her dress around her knees she practically ran the opposite way.