There were people everywhere. There were courtiers and mercenaries, guards and generals and servants, all of them pushing as close to Daxton as they dared, all of them talking at once.
Esha was holding up, standing straight and answering questions. She was the hero of the day and she was rightfully proud, but she still had an arrow sticking out of her shoulder, and she was turning a bit grey.
Daxton met his father’s eyes over the crowd. He couldn’t remember the last time he’d done that. From the raised eyebrows his father was showing, neither could he.
“Son?” He pitched his voice carefully, carrying over the crowd and aimed straight at Daxton.
“You offered my hand in marriage?” Daxton used the same trick. He wasn’t as good at it; the nearby crowd hushed.
“I did. If you-“
For the first time since he was two years old, he cut off his father in a public situation. “I’d like to take my betrothed to the palace doctor now, please. She’s injured, and she got injured saving my life.”
The Duke smiled at him. “Go right ahead, son. Captain Senner, Captain Iken, please escort Lady Esharina and Lord Daxton to the doctor. My son – I am very pleased to have you back.”
Lady. They were really going to do it. He bowed, as low as he could. “Thank you.” Before anything could sneak up on them, he wrapped a careful arm around Esha and led her to the doctor’s suite.
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