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SHE WAS PERFECTLY AWARE THAT SHE WAS NOT SUPPOSED TO BE HERE, but that had never prevented her from coming, her and Aideen. And most of the time, nobody found out about it. If they did, Artan d’Vadalis, her father and tierna
of Merylsward, would pretend to grow angry, and uncle Kirrin would lecture them about the dangers of the wild. The effect of these sermons was to fan the girls’ appetite for adventure. Any punishment was merely making the game of not being found out more interesting.
Lynn was not too certain where ‘here’ was, either, except that it was deep within the forest of the Eldeen, and fairly close to the foothills of the fierce Icehorns. Wherever the thick canopy of the forest cleared, she could catch glimpses of its snow-covered peaks, bathed in the red light of the volcanoes, standing firm under the menacing clouds. Like the armies that, so people told her, f