A voice at the back of the tavern said, “I think I know, it's a needle”
“And who are you, my new friend?” Sam’uel asked.
“I am Crow.”
Someone else interrupted, “No, that cannot be it. Surely it is something else—you perhaps, Sam’uel?”
“Me. I don’t have a single eye,” the bard said with a chuckle.
“And yet you seem to see just fine when needed,” said another as those in the tavern began to debate amongst themselves what the answer should be.
Sam’uel drank his ale in silence, glad for the chance to rest his voice. The girl had stopped breathing frantically and seemed calmer now. Sam’uel knew he would have to have a word with the tavern owner about taking better care of his staff and perhaps hiring a competent guard. Luckily for the tavern owner, Sam’uel knew just the man. Discreet, strong and righteous, he would be able to keep an eye out for this child as well.
Eventually the debate wound down and all turned to Sam’uel once more. He said, “Crow was correct. This is what King Usifan knows and what he would want all of us to remember. He would want all of us to treat everyone we meet the way he treated Dummling.”
The crowd began to disperse as the bell of the night watchman rang the twelfth hour. The tavern grew silent, the fire grew dim. Only the tavern keeper, the serving girls and Sam’uel remained, until there was no one left but the girl and the blind bard.
“Yes, my child?” Sam’uel asked.
“I was just wondering…..was Dummling of the same tribe as the King?”
“Have you travelled far my child?”
“Very far sir. Many have been kind, but others…..”
“People fear what they deem different. I wish it was otherwise. But yes, Dummling too had to leave his home and travel far. He was, in fact, a Neran.