"You'd think that they thought the horses were slaves or somethin',"

This made Dayne start with a chortled laugh. She had been eyeing some men, and how deficiently they had been treating their horses, which of course made her want to wrap her long, slender digits around their necks until their plump faces turned violet and the life shuttered out of them.

"Whoa, there, Day!" her hostler called, as if he were calling one of his esteemed mounts.

She snapped back into reality again and fully became aware of her surroundings. Her obstinate chin jutted out of her face; brown tendrils of hair framed her features, with wonderful, intense eyes the same color, which noticed the dimness of the stables. The ash-gray light made everyone look sickly, so therefore her usually creamy-colored face looked horrid. Those wonderful orbs swept across the room, taking in grimy horses as well as putrid, inedible straw, which reminded her of tasks left to be done.

First, she started grooming the horses, for the king's men never cleaned their own. Most had ticks and ear mites, and she took care of that as well as she could. They way they treated their mounts made her steamed up. The king hired her to nurture them, but how was she supposed to do that when his own men didn't help? She finished up, having to clutch her small nose the whole time, for they smelled of manure.

She swept the straw back into the stalls, to the horses dismay, for they were hoping for fresh food. She whispered an apology to them, and an elucidation, as she cleaned up. Her explanation frankly consisted of swearing at the king and how he never funded his own stables. The horses just stared, not understanding, just like most humans she met. Quickly hurrying, she admired the way the wisps of straw formed geometric patterns on the dirt floor. Her tiny ears picked up a stamp and a whinny, and when she looked up, all the horses were staring at her in bewilderment. Blushing, she jumped back into action, destroying the almost abnormal designs in the straw.

After a few old jobs and errands, she was gratefully finished for the day. Her feet seemed to carry her into the hall swiftly, as if they had a mind to them, and they echoed down the hall eerily. Her feet picked up speed, racing down the hall.

There were voices surrounding her. Voices! She broke into a sprint, not breathing until she hit the sunlight. It took a second for those wonderful eyes to get adjusted, but when they did, you could see them widen and overflow with of fear.

There was a death wheelbarrow. The voices she heard were from the morgue employees and panicking knights. Another voice, she noticed. Right beside her, and speaking directly to her.

"We would like to have a word with you, miss," a knight officer said importantly. Or tried to, since his voice was full of fear. Fear of her. His face was damp with sweat, and Dayne realized that he was still wet behind the ears.

He escorted her to his horse, so she could be comfortable during the interrogation, and started talking, looking around his every second, it seemed. Behind them, the morgue personnel dragged two purple-faced, swollen corpses into the wheelbarrow.