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great deal as he realized the extent of Joram's opposition. As Queron looked up, hands
clasped thoughtfully behind his back, Jaffray frowned and tapped his bishop's ring against
his teeth several times. The archbishop was clearly considering what to do next.
"Dom Queron," he said, after another sigh, "I am constrained to remind these reverend
Fathers that you and I were ever friends and brothers when I was yet a Gabrilite, and that I
want very much to believe what my friend and brother has just told this august assembly
though I should point out that I, like they, am hearing your testimony for the first time.
However, I must also recognize that the distinguished son of the man you seek to make a
saint does not share your enthusiasm. Are you prepared to prove your contention with
witnesses, as is the custom in such proceedings?"
"I am prepared, Your Grace."
"Very well. You have said that one such witness is present. I should like to hear his
testimony. On that basis, we shall determine whether the case warrants further
consideration. Is that agreeable to you.'"
Queron bowed.
"Good. Father MacRorie, you may be seated. I charge you to hold your peace until
Queron's witness has had his say."
Nodding, unable to speak for sheer despair, Joram sank to his seat and leaned his head
against the side of his father's chair. Once more the mental barriers fell, permitting
Camber's cautious touch. As Camber slipped into his son's mind, soothing, thanking,
reassuring, Queron turned to face his still-kneeling brethren. Guaire rose as though on
cue, the promptness of his response leading Camber to suspect that he and Queron were
already bonded in some kind of magical rapport. Now they would see whether Queron was
as skilled as his reputation would have him to be. From a purely objective stance, it would
be interesting to learn how much Guaire remembered.
"Your Grace." Queron handed his scroll to one of the men still kneeling and bowed
formally toward the archbishops' thrones. "I present Lord Guaire of Arliss, a great
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benefactor of our Order and, if Your Grace will permit it, soon to be one of the Servants of
Saint Camber for so we mean to call our company."
Jaffray gazed across at Guaire thoughtfully. "I have heard of your family, Guaire. You are
not yet in holy orders?"
"No, Your Grace."
Taking in hand the jeweled pectoral cross which hung on his chest, Jaffray extended it
toward Guaire.
"Guaire of Arliss, do you swear by this symbol of our faith and the holy relics it contains
that the testimony which you are about to give shall be only the truth, fully cognizant of
the consequences of perjury to your immortal soul?"
Guaire came forward to kiss the cross. "I swear it, so help me God."
At Jaffray s nod of approval, Guaire rose and backed into place at Queron's side, eyes
downcast. Queron, hands clasped easily before him, nodded slightly to Jaffray again before
glancing briefly at his audience.
"Guaire, please tell these Reverend Lords whether you have ever seen aught in this room
before today other than our brethren, of course."
"Yes, Dom Queron. I know Father Joram and Lord Jebediah and Bishop Cullen, of
course."
"Very good. In what capacity, please?"
"I was a friend of Father Joram's brother Cathan, before his death at the hands of King
Imre. I worked with Father Joram and Lord Jebediah and the Bl and the Lord Camber
during the year before the Restoration. I was Lord Camber's squire after Cathan died 
until his death. After that, I entered the service of Bishop Cullen."
"I see. And there is no one else here whom you have seen before?"
"Seen, yes. That was inevitable while I was in Bishop Cullen's service. But not to talk to. I
was only a clark and sometime valet to His Grace of Grecotha."
"But you left Bishop Cullen's service. Why?"
Guaire studied the sandaled toes protruding from beneath his gray robe.
"Last spring, I approached His Grace about permission to build a shrine to Saint Camber
in the cathedral. He was not in favor of the shrine and Father Joram was vehemently [ Pobierz całość w formacie PDF ]




 

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