Chapter 30

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The last name on the Prince's list was Xumhek, the City Father of Vhyt Dhaxz. The old halfling was an astute, respected politician who knew the ropes and had developed many friends and alliances over the years. And while he could have used it to his advantage on many occasions, he tried to always act for the best of Khaballe. The halfling city had been able to secure favorable trade agreements during the last Conclave and figured to do so again. After all, Fulnhyx was the Minister of Commerce, and had been tutored by Xumhek for a number of years before being appointed to the Ministry.

King Nherycyn opened the Conclave of 2999 by restating the agenda and informing them that their goal for the evening was to determine what should be done about Uriel. Then he proceeded to direct Athar to inform the representatives of everything that was known concerning the entire matter. The King's Advisor was dramatic in the retelling, extracting sounds of surprise and disconcerting looks from his audience on several occasions. Athar seated himself when he was finished and was thanked by Nherycyn.

"Arhyvhynne," the King said as he motioned her to rise. All, including the High Witch, noticed the absence of her title when he addressed her. The High Witch was generally considered the second most powerful person in the realm next to the King. But she and the Witches of the Moons historically had been relegated to a minor role because of their magical ability, lack of visibility in the kingdom and apolitical stance. Their proficiency in the art of spell casting made others who were not so gifted uncomfortable. That, combined with the fact that there were very few witches who resided outside the Towers, drew some suspicion and caused uncertainty as to their motives. And because they tried to remain neutral in political matters, they were looked upon as not being supportive.

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