Taura doesn’t know what she wants. But she’s about to find out.
“I don’t understand why I have to do this.”
Andre pushed Taura through the open door, smiling wryly. “Just do it.”
She wanted to argue, but as always something about Andre discouraged her. It wasn’t that he was violent towards her, just that she wasn’t foolish enough to believe their relationship was enough to protect her if she crossed him. “I want to go to training.” Her voice came out almost as a whine, and it made her blush with irritation. The last thing she needed was for him to have any more reasons to treat her like a child.
“You’ll go to training once you’re done. But I don’t want you fighting the men again, alright? You might get hurt.”
“Everyone else gets to get hurt.” She muttered, but stepped into the room nonetheless. Arguing was pointless, he always won anyway.
“Ah, Taura, I’ve been expecting you.” Sven smiled at her as he closed the door behind them.
“Andre said I had to be here.” She tried not to sound as sullen as she felt, but she knew she failed. Sven ruffled her light brown hair playfully, pushing her gently towards a chair.
“It won’t take long. Just a few questions.”
“What do you need to ask questions for? You know everything already.”
Sven smiled again. “Andre wants a record of the recruits, who they are, what they do, that sort of things.”
“And he counts me in that?” She was genuinely surprised. Andre always treated her like more of a child than a recruit. It was the only time he was ever anything close to protective.
“Of course, Taura.”
She sighed, although secretly she was pleased. “Fine, ask away.”
Sven chuckled. He’d known her almost as long as Andre had, and she knew that he still saw her as the little girl who had sat on his lap drawing horses and dogs on the edge of his notes. He’d always had more patience for her than Andre ever had. “You’re very generous.” He winked at her, and despite herself she smiled back. “We know your name, obviously, and what age you joined us.” He scanned her notes, as though trying to find something he didn’t already know the answer to. “So why do you support the Rebellion?”
“What?” The question caught her off guard, and her blue eyes crinkled with confusion. “What do you mean why?”
“Why do you want to fight for us? Why do you want to be here?”
Taura shrugged. She’d never really thought about it before. “I came here with the other women and children after Lord Rolando banished us from our lands. After he stole the crown of Tankea.” She recited the story by heart, but Sven shook his head.
“You’re almost an adult now, Taura. I want to know why you want to be here.”
She paused. She could feel Sven’s eyes boring into her, expecting an answer she didn’t know if she wanted to give. “I…I don’t know. I don’t having anything else, I suppose.”
Something that looked like worry crossed Sven’s face for a moment, but he pushed it away almost instantly. Instead, he smiled at her. “Why don’t you go down to training? I know the rest of these answers anyway.”
She nodded, feeling slightly uneasy as she stood, as though she’d said something that could get her into trouble.
“Go on.” Sven motioned, still smiling.
As she stepped towards the door, something popped into her head and she turned mid-step. “I want to help Andre reclaim the throne.” She said, almost proudly.
Sven simply continued to smile. “I know, Taura. Off you go.”
And just like that, she was dismissed.