Blavi and Riska, who were chatting on the roof, turned and looked at him. "Didn’t expect to see you here," Riska said with a smile.
"I’m full of surprises," Anfey said. He glanced around and said, "Nothing’s amiss, I presume?"
"Everything’s going pretty well," Blavi said, nodding. "You see, over there and there? There are guards everywhere. You don’t even really need the two of us here."
"Better to be careful. Just pretend you’re here for fun."
"You’re by yourself?" Blavi asked, curiously. "Where’s Suzanna?"
"Shally had a nightmare and Suzanna’s with her," Anfey said with a smile. "You two should get some rest. I got it from here." After spending so much time together, everyone knew that Anfey was always energetic and rarely needed rest. Blavi and Riska nodded. They released a levitation spell and disappeared into the building.
Anfey sat on the roof quietly and stared at the courtyard. The innermost building was where Miorich and some of his most trusted men lived. The building there could not hold a dozen more people, and it would be inappropriate if they requested the knights to prepare rooms for them. Miorich may not care, but the knights would. Anfey decided it would be better if they just stayed in a building off to the side.
The innermost courtyard was the most heavily-guarded place in the entire city. The anima pagoda there were essential to connecting the mage towers, and the transmission array was the only way this city could communicate with Sacred City. People who lived there were the most important people in the city, and it was logical how heavily guarded this place was.
Two dozen magic lamps lit the inner courtyard, and teams of guards patrolled it nonstop. Soldiers were much more serious and disciplined than normal people, and did not chat like Blavi and Riska had been just moments ago. They went about their business in silence and did not talk to distract each other.
Anfey felt his eyesight was getting better. He was a few hundred feet away from the knights, but he could still see each and every man.
He talked about the spirits with Christian and Hui Wei, but the more they talked the heavier the mood became. Christian and Hui Wei both became very worried after their talk. They were still young, and were ambitious enough to aspire to great things. They were worried not only for themselves, but also for the entire world. It was understandable, since young people tended to have grand ideas and dreams. Even if one was only working a small and insignificant job, everyone still had the dream to achieve greatness. The older a man got, however, the less idealistic he would become. Some people would even forget about their initial dreams.
Suddenly, Anfey spotted someone walking out of the inner courtyard. He was dressed in common clothes and did not appear special. Anfey wasn’t sure where he had seen the man before, he looked familiar.
The guards did not pay the man much attention, and when he left the inner courtyard, he suddenly lifted his head as if he sensed someone observing him. He looked towards Anfey and their eyes met.
Anfey saw the man’s shock, and knew that he had recognized him. The man lowered his head and quickly passed by under the building.
"Anfey? Why are you here by yourself?"
"Feller? What are you doing up here?"
"I wanted some fresh air."
"It's three in the morning."
Feller smiled and sat down next to Anfey. "I don’t know what’s wrong with me, but every time I fall asleep, I have nightmares. I can’t sleep like that."
"Aren’t you a little too old to be spooked by nightmares?"
"You don’t know, but the dreams were so real," Feller said, shaking his head. "Almost too real."
"There you are, we’ve been looking for you, Feller." The door opened and Sante and Zubin appeared.
"Why are you looking for me?" Feller asked.
"Do you have any ale left?"
"No. Why would I? I left unnecessary things at Moramatch."
"God, I wish we were staying at an inn," Sante muttered. "I don’t even want to leave my room here, let alone find ale."
"Why aren’t you two asleep?" Anfey asked.
"Had a nightmare," Sante said, shaking his head. He turned to Feller and said, "Did you really leave ale at Moramatch?"
Anfey frowned. He knew it was normal for Shally to have nightmares, and Feller’s nightmare must have been a coincidence. Now that he learned Sante was having nightmares as well, he was growing suspicious. "Zubin," he said, "did you have a nightmare as well?"
"How did you know?" Zubin asked, frowning.
Anfey jumped up and said urgently, "Quick, wake everyone up."
"What? What happened?"
"Quick, do as I say. I will explain it in a bit," Anfey said. He ran towards the edge of the roof and jumped off. He knew exactly where Shally and Suzanna’s room was, and it was easier this way. He grabbed their windowsill and knocked on the window.
"Who is it?" Suzanna asked, alarmed.
"Me," Anfey said.
"Wait," Suzanna said.
After a few moments, Suzanna opened the window. She was wearing a white nightgown. She grinned after seeing Anfey standing on the windowsill like a thief and asked, "What are you doing?"
"Is Shally still having nightmares?" Anfey asked as he jumped into the room.
"She is," Suzanna said, nodding. "I would spend half an hour putting her to sleep and she would wake up crying after a few minutes. I don’t know what spooked her so much." She frowned and shook her head.
"Grab her, and let’s go look for Niya."
"Alright," Suzanna said. She moved over to the bed and gathered Shally into her arms. Shally frowned and murmured something.
Anfey pushed open the door and knocked on Niya’s door, which was directly across the hall. He waited for a few minutes, but there was no response. Anfey knocked again, harder, but there was still no response. Anfey frowned and pushed the door open.
Niya was lying quietly in her bed and was asleep. Her thin quilt was thrown aside and her nightgown was rolled up to her thigh. The little unicorn woke up and shook its head. Seeing it was Anfey in the room, it jumped up happily and walked to his side.
Anfey did not care that he was in Niya’s room without permission and did not try to entertain the unicorn. He walked over and shook Niya. Niya groaned and opened her eyes. Seeing that it was Anfey who woke her up, she rolled her eyes and waved her hand. "Go away, for goodness’s sake," she said.
"Get up now," Anfey said.
"Why?" Niya asked. "Are there necromancers here?"
"No, but you still need to get up immediately," Anfey said, hiding a grin.
"Fine," Niya said with a sigh. She sat up in her bed, then suddenly let out a shrill scream. Anfey jumped back, and the unicorn looked at Niya, confused by her sudden action.
Suzanna appeared with Shally in her arms. Shally was shaking, and looked like she was crying. She must be having nightmares again, and a nightmare so terrible she could not wake up. Otherwise Niya’s scream would have awakened her.
"Suzanna!" Niya called. "He's violating my privacy!" Niya covered herself with the quilt and said angrily. She would obey Anfey’s orders, but he must respect and trust her. Now she was too angry to do anything.
"Niya, calm down," Anfey said quietly. "Are you having nightmares?"
"What? No," Niya said angrily.
Anfey looked at her and frowned. He remembered that Niya appeared very peaceful in her sleep, and did not look like she was having nightmares.
Zubin and Blavi burst into the room. They thought that something must have happened after hearing Niya’s scream and came to her rescue. Seeing Niya, who was sitting in her bed with the quilt around her body, and Anfey, who was standing next to her bed, the two of them turned around and left the room without saying a word.