Katie stared at Malphus' bruised face with shocked eyes after what Lord Norman revealed in the cell. It was eerily quiet as everyone stared at the man whom Katie knew was nothing but a spirit.
Was the south Lord lying? But Malphus had not denied of what the Lord said and instead he sat there quietly staring at the wall next to him like no one had uttered a word.
"You might have caught the wrong person," Katie spoke making the old man laugh at her words.
"Oh lady. I am sure I know who he is."
"But he is Malphus Crook," she corrected to see the Lord eye's move from her to the man next to her cell.
"Such shame that you couldn't carry the name of our family, not that I expected you to. Crook suits you better just like the wretch's name," Lord Norman spoke to Malphus who didn't bother to look at the man in front of him, "I thought you were dead but look at you looking all healthy and walking without a care in the world."
Katie felt things were going to fast for her to contemplate everything that was going on.
During her time in Valeria, she had heard that Lord Norman had two sons and Silas Norman being the youngest one. If it was so didn't it mean Malphus was the eldest son of the south Lord. Now that she looked at them she saw the similarity between the siblings, their eyes were dull grey and other little features that could go missed unless one observed carefully.
"Your behavior is as unworthy as before. Ugly and shameful," the Lord commented to which Malphus looked up lazily, his grey eyes meeting the people standing outside the cell.
"What can I say, I inherited them from my father," Malphus replies for the first time enjoying the Lord's reaction for a few seconds.
"Smile as much as you want boy because you will soon be next to your deceased mother," the Lord said before turning and walking away from the cell.
Silas who had been there leaning his back on the wall stood straight after his father left the cell. His grey eyes similar to the color of Malphus' iris as he stared at both of them.
After what Lord Norman said, Katie couldn't help but be worried about Malphus. Four nights ago her cousin and her had seen Malphus depart for Valeria so that he could deliver the message to Lord Alexander but here he was, his face bruised and one corner of his lips stuck with dried blood. Why hadn't he turned to his spirit form? Something didn't feel right to her.
She felt herself jerk back to reality hearing Silas' voice right in front of her.
Silas had ordered the guardsman to open her cell so that he could go talk to her without the distance of bars in between them. He had been smitten with her since their first encounter and had tried keeping close tab on her. At first he had thought that she the Valerian Lord's woman but which man would send his woman to a different empire? She was just another one of the Lords scandal.
Her beautiful brown eyes carried fright in them as she scrambled away from him, the shackles around her legs making noise as she moved when he tried reaching for her with his hand.
"Do not be frightened. You are as safe as a bird in the beautiful cage," she heard him speak, "Your Lord of Valeria didn't know to value you but I will. Come here-" he gave his hand and Katie swatted it away with anger, her eyes red with hate.
"You are a heartless murderer with no humanity. We didn't do anything to you to imprison us in this cell of yours you call a beautiful cage," Silas only smiled to give her a gentle smile.
"The little girl lies," he said coming near her, "Don't you remember that you killed your brother," he said with pity.
"You killed him! You conspired to have him killed!"
"And what proof do you have that I did? Did you perhaps forget that witches are burnt in the empire. My people saw you with the dagger and blood in your hands, my people remember. My father was good enough to change your punishment," Silas said getting closer to her, "It seems like you have acquainted yourself with my useless brother. Don't forget that if you don't obey you will have an other one's blood on your hands."
"How could you do something so immoral," she asked him in a whisper before her eyes flared up to meet his eyes, "He didn't do anything. Nothing to harm you or your people or anything and you had him killed," her eyes burnt with unshed tears before one of them slipped to trail down her cheek.
"That is the problem. He didn't do anything," Silas tsked pressing his lips unhappily, "Did you think we would leave someone loose after asking them to take a Lord's head?"
"I knew you fed him lies," Katie accused him while wiping the tear with the edge of her palm.
"Your cousin was completely convinced with what we showed and said but I didn't expect him to send us a letter telling that he couldn't carry out the job. We couldn't leave someone like him alive when he can be threat in the future," the man in front of her clicked his tongue, "Nonetheless we found a deviation thanks to the council and here you are."
"Don't think your deeds are going to go unnoticed. When the council finds out, you are the one who is going to be behind the bar cells."
Listening to this, Silas grabbed her face in his hand tightly.
"Silas," Katie heard Malphus warn him but Silas ignored him and he instead spoke to her with a smile,
"I like that mouth of yours. I wonder what else it's capable of," he said pushing her face away and stood up, "Please rest well," and he left the cells.
Katie felt herself shudder once she saw the man exit from her sight, the guardsmen followed the young Lord. Seeing that they were alone Malphus spoke, "I leave you for few hours and you end up in a cell. Please enlighten me on how you keep getting into such adventurous situations."