"So," Julien said, with a twinkle in his sapphire eyes, "why don't you tell me about your friends in Tennur? Your mind is on them already, and I'd love to hear about your adventures of late."
No longer restricted to talking about the pleasant weather and nodding as Julien told her of all the events she had missed while she had been absent from court, Isadora gladly began to tell her host of Quin and Jodra. She told of evenings together in the small house and days exploring the surrounding forest with her kind, dark-eyed friend at her side. She was careful not to mention how she had come to meet Quin in the first place, focusing only on the good times she'd had in his company. She even told about the day in the city, and Lilia's house. She stopped just short of telling Julien about Quin's words to her the night before he left. I love... you, he had said. Isadora clutched those words to her heart as she recounted her days with the boy who loved her.
Meanwhile, the food came and went, and Isadrora picked lightly; the wine was refilled again and again, and Julien drank heavily. Finally, when the windows outside had been to dark to see through for some time, Julien rose, and swaying only slightly, led her to her room.
Isadora undressed without the help of the maids from earlier in the afternoon, and changed into a nightdress, preparing for bed. As she lifted the luxurious covers from the large bed, there was a knock at the door. Puzzled but not concerned, she wrapped a dressing gown around her nightgown-clad frame and opened the door. On the other side stood two heavyset guards in royal uniform. Julien stood behind them.
"Evening, Majesty," one of the guards said. "We're here to escort you home."