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At the end of Valley of the Shadow, Count Arian Orland was in pretty bad shape after being attacked by Teodora’s minions. Anton is staying with him while he recovers. They’re currently living in Natalya’s palace, which makes Anton antsy, because she forces him to go to school instead of fighting in battles. Such a drag! Anton comes home from school every day and goes straight to dealing with a depressed, cranky count. Somewhat creatively punctuated.
It was dark in the count’s room, the curtains drawn at the windows and around the big bed. “I’m here,” Anton shouted by way of warning, then threw open the curtains at the window. He opened one of them wide, since it was hot and didn’t smell too good. Then he went to the bed and pulled those curtains open as well.
“Go away,” the count grumbled into this pillow.
“You know I won’t,” Anton said, trying to sound cheerful, though he was sick of doing this every day. “It’s time for you to get up, have a wash, and walk around a little.”
“I don’t want to today,” the count said, opening his one eye, then closing it against the bright light.
“I know,” Anton said, pouring some water into a cup from a pitcher on the table. “Doesn’t matter; you have to- otherwise you’ll be here forever, and I would hate that.”
Previous snippets are here.