The next morning, Jarin got up early, so he could speak with Devin. He found the older man sitting by the fire, talking to Kain and one of the other men. When he approached, they fell silent. The man he did not recognize glanced at him, then left. Kain continued to work on the saddle he was repairing, without looking up. Devin touched Kain lightly on the arm. "Hey, if you will excuse us, I would like to have a talk with Jarin."
The blond man started to move the saddle, but Devin stopped him. "No, don't leave. We're gonna go into my tent."
Kain smiled at him, still avoiding Jarin. Without a word, he went back to his work.
Devin grinned at Jarin, getting to his feet. "May I have a word with you?"
Jarin laughed softly. "That is exactly what I came out here for. I need to speak with you."
"Let's go into my tent, then," Devin patted Kain on the shoulder, then walked over to his tent. Jarin followed him, sitting down on the stool he was offered. Once Devin had also seated himself on a similar stool, Jarin turned to him.
"I appreciate everything you have done for me, but I should be getting back home soon. My father has probably already sent out a search party. The only concern I have is my horse's side, but she will probably be okay, if I go easy on her. It's not very far to ride, anyway."
Devin took a deep breath, letting it out slowly. "I agree that you should go back, so your father doesn't get too worried. However, there are a few things I would like to discuss with you, first," he paused. "It has to do with your father."
Jarin's eyes grew wide with surprise. "What do you know of my father?"
Devin sighed. "More than you might think. One of my men met him many years, when he acted as a wealthy merchant," he paused, looking at Jarin. "Jarin, do you know anything about magic?"
Jarin glared. "I know I don't like it. It was the reason...never mind," he stopped, not wanting to tell this man he barely knew about the death of his lover. He had not trusted magic since then, even though he did not understand it very well. It was the reason Breely had died, and he did not want anything to do with it. His heart was mending very slowly from that, and he didn't see it as any of Devin's business. Clearing his throat, Jarin smiled weakly. Fingering his necklace, Jarin felt a familiar ache in his heart. Closing his eyes, he replied quietly. "I do not understand the way magic works. Why are we having this conversation?"
Devin smiled at him gently. "Because, I believe your father is involved in it. Not just magic, but dark magic. He has been studying it for many years, and doing experiments."
Jarin was about to protest, when he remembered the spell books his father had been so determined to retrieve. He had been wondering why his father would have anything to do with spell books. It seemed odd that this man would have the answers, but it was worth a try. He took a deep breath, then looked back at Devin. "My father's advisor mentioned something about spell books having been stolen, and I thought it odd that there would be books of that kind in our manor. They were searched for a few weeks later, and..." he paused, feeling a lump form in his throat.
Swallowing hard, Jarin continued. "...they found some of them, but not the one my father was mainly concerned about. I have been wondering why my father would want any kind of spell books, especially dark ones."
Devin looked at him, seriousness in his eyes. "I ask this because, like I said before, I know people who have been affected by magic, directly. I also know it was your father's doing."
Jarin shook his head. This didn't make any sense. His father was a high lord, not a magic user. "What happened? What do you know?"
He asked, surprising Devin by being so calm about it. He wanted to know the truth.
Devin smiled at him. "Are you sure you want to know all the information I have right now? It may change the way you view your father."
Jarin nodded. "I have had my own suspicions for the last few years, but have never investigated him. I would like to know what you know about him, so I can find out the truth."
Devin sighed. "If you are sure, I'll tell you later. I think it is important that you go back to you father, so he doesn't get worried. If you look around his study, you should be able to find something connecting him to magic. When you do, I would like to know what you find."
Jarin smiled at him, knowing the older man was stalling from telling him the entire truth. He also knew he was right about going home first. "Alright, I'll look around when I get home. Thank you for everything."
Devin smiled. "I am very glad to have met you."
Jarin stood up to leave, turning to Devin. "Why did you not suspect me, if you do my father?"
Devin shrugged. "I did, at first, but now I know it is impossible that you are involved in his actions. You are a good man."
Jarin smiled. "You are, also. It has been a pleasure meeting you, and I will get back to you when I find out more."
Jarin left, walking to his own tent to get ready to leave. While passing the fire, he noticed Kain still sitting by the fire, finishing the work on the saddle. The shorter man, glanced up at him, but said nothing. Jarin continued on to his tent, and packed his things quickly. He wanted to get back, so he could find out answers for himself.
After saying goodbye to Emery, Fletcher and Devin, Jarin looked around for Kain. He was hoping to say goodbye to him, also, but the light haired man was nowhere in sight. A little disappointed, he got on his horse and left.
Kain watched Jarin leave, glad he had been able to avoid Jarin. He had never been good at that, and he hated the awkwardness of saying goodbye. He also knew that he had not made the best impression on the other man, so he didn't want the young noble to leave with bad thought about him.
When Jarin had ridden out of sight, Kain returned to camp.