and some dried apple slices. I also managed to filch some of those flatty cakes that you’re so fond of, Gludog!” Robyn was pulling at the cord on his pack as he spoke. “I don’t know if there’ll be enough to feed so many youngsters, though!”
When he had emptied his pack, Drimana exclaimed: “Good gracious! You and Gludog must certainly have healthy appetites if this amount was intended merely for you two!”
Robyn joined the others. The two young Coblyns, from the most feared tower in the castle, laughing and joking as they sat sharing their meal, fascinated the little ones. The youngsters from all the other towers were warned never to approach anyone from the Hunters’ Tower, as they were renowned for their ferocity and swift unquestioning arrows!
“Hey! Leave that alone!” Robyn said sternly to a little lad who was examining his bow that he had unslung from his shoulder when he sat down.
“Didn’t your mother teach you never to touch another’s weapons?” he added, with a degree more kindness, when he saw that he had genuinely frightened the little one.
“I’m afraid that he doesn’t have a mother to instruct him in those types of manners. In our tower, we at the Orphanage are not really exposed to the armed guards very much for them to be aware of those sorts of principles. When they leave the Orphanage, we consider that to be the right time to instruct them in the wider ways of the world.”
Drimana was neither apologetic nor subservient in her answer to Robyn. She resented his manner with the little ones. It was after all, only their natural curiosity that made them act as they did. However, the awkward moment soon passed as everyone’s attention became riveted on a spectacular Dynol single combat.
After the bwydnic, they spent a pleasant afternoon watching the entertainment below; until Drimana announced that, it was time for her group to head back to the Kitchen Tower. They needed to be home in time for the evening meal and bedtime for the young ones.
Robyn, having by this time restored Drimana’s good opinion of himself, regretted that he would not be able to accompany her. “I’m already well behind with the work my tutor’s set for me and I must try to complete something today.”
“Never mind, I’ll escort Drimana back to her tower. At the same time, I can gather some of the herbs that I still have to replenish, since they grow in that direction.” Gludog was secretly glad that his friend was going to leave them alone again. Not that he was jealous of Robyn’s gallantries toward Drimana, but since he had arrived, Gludog