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A Wish for Hope
Chapter Thirty-Six

Stepping out on the balcony to peer over the railing, I had to say, “Chering, I thought we already settled things between us.”

He looked up from where he was tuning a bass fiddle to say, “Hope springs eternal, Princess Jelnaya. I could not return to Davelda without trying to woo you at least once.”

“So, you brought a bass fiddle from Davelda to make your romantic plea?”

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A Wish for Hope
Chapter Thirty-Five

I stood up while saying, “It was never your fight, Honored Jelnaya. Still, thank you for coming.”

“Gods have their ways. After what I did to what is now my realm, this mission has actually helped me. I cannot say I am looking forward to going back, but I guess that is now my home. I’ll work on it. You work on making things right as well, Esgalia.”

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A Wish for Hope
Chapter Thirty-Four

“Of course, Honored Neselle. That is my request from you. This has been a realm devoted to Samayer. The military here sought to protect the land along with assuring the safety of those who pilgrimaged to the temple. Will Jelnaya prefer a different style of training for her troops?”

“She was told to slaughter the military here, General. Whatever they were seeking to assure the survival of, was not something deserving of survival.”

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A Wish for Hope
Chapter Thirty-Three

“You think I can, Princess?” I did not reply, and as expected he tried. “You think the gods are working on him?”

“He was working with the gods, Vulge. They are merely recognizing his dedication.”

“So, your answer is ‘no.’”

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A Wish for Hope
Chapter Thirty-Two

“Wait! Jelnaya, we can make a deal. Whatever you are being paid, I will add half again. I can even offer other benefits. You want a man? Men?”

“Hold it,” the lady said going to the stairwell to look up at the man. “You know who I am, but think I can be bought?”

“I understand mercenaries. Fully support someone working at what they do best and making money off it. Getting paid for doing nothing. Come on, can’t beat that.”

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A Wish for Hope
Chapter Thirty-One

“Well, I still want to assure you are ready for what might happen.”

I stood while replying, “I feel that whatever happens, I can face it with a clear conscious. Honestly, I doubt I could say that about me as a fox person.”

A smile came to my face as she again approached to tap me on the nose while commanding, “Keep your head clear. We might need you.”

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A Wish for Hope
Chapter Thirty

“Just how powerful do you think it is?”

“Think about it, Abreyon. Esgalia’s people were not forced, I mean beaten into submission. They were convinced. I am going to force a fight, but not because of my association with Fergush. I am going to force a fight because I don’t want to face this being on its own field of battle. The evidence is strong that I might not win that fight.”

“So, you can be scared.”

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A Wish for Hope
Chapter Twenty-Nine

I expected the voice of the mother to grow louder, although a number had to pause as the voice of another lady rang out, “Did someone request the council of Dabogda?”

I quickly replied, “Actually no, which I mentioned as being the problem.”

The young man was also in a rush to speak. “Keir, this – girl – does not belong here.”

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A Wish for Hope
Chapter Twenty-Eight

“My wife. I cannot believe I kept rescuing my wife. She had to have been a different person once, or I had to have been a different person.”

“That’s not a confession for me.”

My first thought was that she was correct, although I quickly spoke a correction. “You cannot save me unless you know.”

“Well, I will admit that you are here with me through my struggles, so I guess I need to stay with you when you confront yours.”

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A Wish for Hope
Chapter Twenty-Seven

That was all he said, but the way he froze told me more. Seeing him point a finger at me had me watch him. Vulge then moved around looking at the buildings. He clearly paused in noticing that at least two doors along the way had the same symbol, so I had to smile at the way he turned to me to ask a question.

“Are you leading us into an ambush?”

I pointed over the road a few blocks down before answering, “No, but a trap.”