Excerpt from Dolor and Shadow
“Where is he?”
Geirolf waited for Bergen to speak.
Instead, the Dark One simply grinned from behind the flask, catching a bit of light with the scar on his right brow.
Geirolf brought his voice down with a bit more severity than before. “Rune is nowhere to be found. The Dokkalfar Queen is unaccounted for, and you haven’t sent a single party to locate either monarch in nearly a fortnight!”
“I don’t want to.”
Geirolf sighed, long and low. “Where is your brother?”
“I don’t know.” Bergen’s words were dry as if they were over-rehearsed.
Geirolf expanded his chest, inhaling a large helping of patience, and climbed the steps to the throne. His wide frame towered over Bergen, barely dwarfing the Drottinn. He braced each hand on the armrests, and bent low until his nose stopped inches from Bergen’s.
“You show up a fortnight ago stripped of your bow, your boots, and reeking of imported Thash Grape Ale with nothing more than a grin and some story about a rose, a goat, and a ring!”
“It was a great night,” Bergen beamed, “one I will never forget,” he added with a dazed look as though in a mist.
A small vein on Geirolf’s forehead pulsed.
“For the sake of an old man who desperately looks to end the ceaseless nagging of Torunn’s maternal woes, please,” he said, “tell me where your brother is.”
Bergen sympathetically dropped a hand to Geirolf’s shoulder.
“As much of my pity as you may have,” Bergen said with feigned devoutness, “I have been sworn to secrecy under the command of my king.”
Geirolf stared at the twinkle in Bergen’s eyes. “How noble,” Geirolf grumbled at the wide smile pasted upon Bergen’s face.