Konnar reached out and pulled off her veil. Her fillet remained, crowning her with the fine band of bright silver. “Unmarried women do not cover their heads. While you are in my keep, you will not wear a hustrulinet.” He seemed to study the thick strand of hair he held in his hand as he let his fingers slide along its length. Amber shivered, watched him contemplate the ribbon of hair as if he made plans.
She batted his hand away, drawing back from him “You said I will not find the key to your undoing, but I already have. I see how you use your physical might to intimidate, but it has not always been enough, has it, to keep those you love safe?” Used to provoke him, she based a ploy on the brief reading of runes on the prow. She watched to see if he would take the bait, and was not surprised when he did.
Konnar grabbed her by the arm with a jerk. A muscle rippled along his jaw. “I have always taken care of my own!” The volume of his defensive tone incited his crew to look up from their various activities. His eyes narrowed at Amber and fell to the slight upturn at the corners of her mouth. Loosening his grip, Konnar sat back, looked more composed. “You think yourself too clever. Is this how you go about telling your prophecies? You observe someone for a time, then make a statement to draw them out? The world is full of false seers. Perhaps you are one.”
“Yet I struck a cord, I think. It frightens people to look inside themselves and you are no different.” She spoke boldly, but grimaced slightly, fearing his reaction.
Konnar scoffed and stood up, casting a dark shadow over Amber. “Perhaps those who seek your counsel on behalf of petty issues have much to fear. I have never assented to that sort of vanity.”
“Or perhaps it is as I have said, you would not bear to see your own black heart. Or worse, you would not even recognize the wrongs you have committed. Your counsel is the ax hewn between the shoulder blades or to separate a man’s rib from his breastbone while he yet lives. Raven wings you call it?” Amber’s eyes burned with unshed tears. “I have spent a lifetime listening to tales of your doing, Konnar. I have lived them in my, my ...” Dreams. She caught herself from self-betrayal.
“You accuse and condemn me for the acts of a hundred others. If I judged other nuns by your example, I should think them all seidhkonas with a bent for doing murder. Yet I doubt that is the case.”