I knew I was too late even before I reached her chamber… the heavy silence was enough to tell me so.
Silence is never truly silent; it is but a noiseless echo of what was before. Like the silence that follows a storm, or the silence as dusk descends upon a forest. The silence of the empty tavern as the innkeeper bolts shut the door at night, or the silence of the child taking in the vastness of the ocean for the very first time. Then there is the silence deep inside each of us, that dread that accompanies our fears, doubts, and regrets.
None of these however echo quite so loudly as the silence of grief. It is a silence full of sadness, of anger, and of a deafening melancholy that dulls our every sensibility. That is the noisiest silence of them all, and through every hall and chamber of the Alcaire castle, the echoes of grief are a cacophony.
Sir Hughes has fled to Firebrand, I shall follow, and the wrath and ire of both Alcaire and the Alik’r shall ride with me.