Quiberron feeds his owl, Bart, a morsel from his plate as he looks around the room. Quiberron was always noticing things. The way people moved. The out of place smells carried on boots. Or, like right now, the overly loud crashing of pots and pans in the kitchens off of the dining hall. Quiberron sends Bart up to sit in the rafters after another scrap of meat. He then nudges Tyrects with his foot and mutters to him in a low voice, “I think something more interesting than that buffoon's autobiography or mess is about to happen.”
As people eat and finish their meals, dishes are cleared and dessert is brought out. The waitstaff hurry to place a rich serving of apple cobbler and a glass of brandy in front of each person. Tyrects loses his contented smile at seeing the unappetizing drink and dessert, and fully frowns at Quibberon's words.
“Something’s wrong,” Quiberron says to Tyrects. And then, more loudly, “let’s go pay our respects to our host for this wonderful meal.” With that he gets up and starts walking towards the high table.
Tyrects follows, moving purposefully, trying to take in the whole room and feel for what Quiberron noticed.
In a dangerous political climate, several expeditions are made to the infamous Wilds in hopes of expanding the country, Urbane, and avoiding an all out civil war. But, when the lord in charge of the excursions is almost assassinated, tensions increase and put new pressures on the brave explorers.