Our mission is to apprehend the shapeshifter, dead or alive, in order to understand the scope of their ability and find out who their accomplices are. Phloria said.
The key is to not alert our suspects or our target will just become a face in the crowd.
Manohar, you are a Royal Forgemaster and have been here for a while.
What have you discovered so far Orion asked.
I examined everyone in the Metra and the Beilin households, yet I found no trace of slave items, spells, or suspicious life forces. Manohar said, leaving them flabbergasted.
A single noble household was comprised of hundreds of people, yet he had managed to meet them all without even being recognized since the news of the god of healing harassing people would have made the headlines.
The access logs to the city mainframe were of no use.
I couldn\'t reveal their existence and then ask those who used the codes where they were at all given times without making the investigation public.
So, you\'ve got nothing. Jirni racked her brain trying to find a way to lure the shapeshifter in the open.
No, I\'ve got a lot on my plate. Manohar sneered at their lack of faith.
During my stay in Ruham, I increased the security and kept an eye on the armory logs.
With the dimensional sealing arrays surrounding the City Hall, no one can use dimensional amulets and anyone carrying weapons in public will hardly go unnoticed.
Our culprit has taken another set of artifacts and we just have to wait for the moment they bring the weapons back to catch them.
Excellent news. Orion nodded.
Yet we only have one shot at this.
If we fail the shapeshifter will run away and catching them will be impossible.
Also, in the meantime, we have to understand how long this has been going on and the role of all those involved.
The moment our trap goes off, the accomplices of the shapeshifter will either run away or be killed to tie up the loose ends, leaving us no way to understand what happened and if it might be happening in other cities as well.
The group spent the rest of the morning planning their next move and the afternoon getting familiar with the Ruham.
Orion and Phloria had been called as Manohar\'s bodyguards under the pretense that someone had attempted on his life.
They followed him everywhere, having the opportunity to study the City Hall and to be introduced to the officials who worked there without arousing suspicions.
Jirni and Quylla, instead, had to keep their presence hidden.
The arrival of an Archon right after that of an Archmage would have been impossible to explain.
Jirni had several aliases and disguises but she preferred to lay low and study the bigger picture from her hotel room.
How is Friya doing I haven\'t heard from her ever since I left the house and yesterday you\'ve have been vague about her whereabouts. She asked while passing all the logs to Kamila while she checked the personal files of Ruham\'s upper echelons.
Kamila\'s years as a data analyst made her a valuable asset when working on numbers and even though it wasn\'t the same as meeting them in person, Jirni could still learn a few things about the city nobles by running deep background checks on them.
Well, she\'ll be here for dinner.
We planned this together, you know Quylla said.
That\'s not what I asked you and you know it.
She went to the Desert with Lith. Quylla swallowed a lump of saliva in embarrassment.
Alone Right after he broke up with Kamila Jirni\'s words made her poor assistant on the other side of the amulet freeze up for a second.
Is there something going on between them
No way. Quylla couldn\'t tell her mother about Solus or about Salaark teaching Forgemastery to Lith without compromising his position with the Kingdom even further.
She went there just to spend some time away from you and Dad.
With all the places in the world why the Desert The excuse was as lame as it sounded.
Because she wanted to visit the homeland of a guy she likes. Quylla said the first thing that came to her mind.
Jirni could tell from Quylla\'s tense expression and body language that it was either a lie or that she was still hiding something important from her.
Really A guy from the Desert What\'s his name
Just Nalrond. Quylla suddenly realized she knew nothing about the Rezar but his name.
A commoner from the Desert Seriously Is he at least a good mage The good news was that now Jirni understood why Friya had gone to the Desert and why Quylla had lied about it.
A noblewoman dating a commoner was romantic only in theatrical plays.
In real life, it would have brought the Ernas household great embarrassment.
\'I bet that this Nalrond is there with her, showing Friya his house just like Quylla did with Morok.\' Jirni just wanted her daughters to be happy but at that point, she had almost resigned to Friya being a more considerate version of Tulion.
He\'s a Light Master. Quylla bit her tongue at the idea of revealing such a secret, but there wasn\'t anything else that she could tell her mother about Nalrond to impress her.
Telling her mother that he was good with children and worked as a nanny for Selia would have forced Friya to lick the spoon with which Quylla had stirred that pot of bull**.
Finally, some good news.
Tell me more about him.
The first family dinner in months was incredibly awkward.
Not only because Orion refused to look at Jirni or even to talk with her, but also because Manohar was there.
After what had almost happened to Orion during the morning, everyone stared at Manohar\'s nimble hands as if they were venomous snakes, keeping their plates as far away from him as possible.
It\'s good to see you again, Mom. Friya said with a dazzling smile that only made Jirni grow more suspicious.
Friya was usually the grumpiest of the three and that unusual behavior together with her tanned skin had to mean something.
She was a gorgeous 22 years old woman, 1.67 meters (5\'6) tall, with long silky black hair that framed her delicate visage, emphasizing her light chestnut eyes and her fair skin.
Her soft curves and ample bosom were so voluptuous that not even the loose adventurer\'s clothes she wore could hide them more than a passing cloud could eclipse the sun.
She was also the only dimensional mage of her generation, which along with her beauty and noble family made her one of the most coveted maidens of the Kingdom.
In theory, she was supposed to be the easiest to marry, but after several bad experiences, she had become wary of both men and women.
If Jirni, or anyone else for that matters, were to discover that after being Awakened she had turned out to possess the six elemental streaks in her hair that she was now hiding with Body Sculpting, it would have given her a stroke.
Bearing the blessing of all the six gods of magic made Friya a worthy Queen candidate and proved a raw talent on par with Sylpha if not even legendary figures like Lochra Silverwing.
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