7.4

Ember walked around the bed in a circle a few times. We are talking to Professor Vaudelle because…?

“Because Lorque wants me to talk to someone, and I don’t want to talk to Heldira, especially considering your report on her familiar.” Nilien made a face. She didn’t think it followed that a familiar was all that like their person – she wasn’t that much like Ember! – but it did seem like a bad sign all around if Heldira’s badger had chased off Ember.

Including the fact that Heldira most likely now knew that Nilien was looking into her, assuming she remembered that Nilien’s familiar was a red fox. The color-coded outfits didn’t exactly make that a secret, after all.

Nilien sighed. “And because someone is trying to kill me. With that in mind, maybe I ought to talk to someone on the staff until they listen to me.”

What of the letter from your friend…? Ember prompted.

“That’s a good idea. Larisse’s letter ought to provide a little back-up to my claims, if they can get past her style of writing. Are you up to it?”

Ember stretched. I am feeling well enough.

They took the most direct route they knew to Professor Vaudelle’s office, and found the professor in. Nilien hemmed and hawed for a moment, trying to figure out how to begin, until Ember bit at the hem of her skirt. Say: “I’m worried Heldira is helping someone try to kill me.”

“I’m worried Heldira is in on a plot to kill me,” Nilien temporized. “And someone has been in my room, taking a pendant that – well, that appeared in my old dorm room just after the first attempt on my life. I believe that the police were looking for it in my old dorm.”

“Oh, dear, I’m sure other students are not trying to kill you,” Vaudelle tutted. She took the letter when Nilien offered it, however, her eyebrows slowly rising. “This is from a friend of yours at your old school? And she says the police were involved?”

“Well,” Nilien offered, as politely as possible, “someone already has tried to kill me once, when I became a Wild Rune. And I’m sure they’re interested in catching that person. But I am worried, especially with the pendant going missing from my room, and the way that the tracking spells have re-appeared, that someone here is involved – or that someone is hiding here in one of the-” she was going to say secret passages and changed her mind at the last moment “-labyrinthine twists of this school.”

“There are definitely places someone could hide,” Vaudelle agreed, as if she was considering the option. “Could I take this letter to show Headmistress Draufer, Nilien?”

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