Chapter 4

Riding into the courtyard of Forst Reach on his Companion like horse Stefan watched in amusement as the boy he had come to see chewed down the man in front of him who by a couple of the comments the boy threw out Stefan assumed to be his father. When finally one of the men who were guarding the gate looked away from the display the Lord and Heir were making in the middle of the courtyard and noticed him the man pulled out his sword and began rushing towards his party. One of the guards seeing a mortal running towards his King with weapons drawn pulled out his whip and cracked it twice gathering attention from the rest of the people in the courtyard, even as Stefan ignored the commotion watching the two nobles turn to see them. Even as the Lord opened his mouth to make some demand that none of the six would answer Vanyel's face dropped its cold mask as joy surged through him.

With a cry of, "Stefan" Vanyel practically threw himself across the courtyard only to pause five feet away and bow much to the consternation of the guards and the anger of his father who thought his heir shouldn't be bowing to anyone even if the rich clothes they wore marked them as high ranking merchants at the least. "Lord Valrayven, for the remaining time I reside here I would like to formally welcome your Highness to Forst Reach ancestral home of the Ashkevron's." Vanyel said shocking the rest of the courtyard with the man's titles. "Your Graces'," the boy said again to the five 'guards' with drawn weapons surrounding Stefan. "It is a pleasure to make your acquaintance, his Majesty has mentioned you as his best warrior's but I have never had the pleasure. Welcome to Forst Reach."

After finishing the formal greeting Vanyel darted threw the circle of guards, startling a few of the horse-like creatures, and jumped straight into Stefan's arms the boy's trembling making the god scowl and glare at the Lord of Forst Reach even as he wrapped the teen in his arms. "Shhh, little one, don't cry. Come, fledgling tell me what has you so worked up maybe I can help." Hearing the foreign endearment the dark imposing man had used on his son the Lord flushed in anger opening his mouth to shout at the man under the watchful, increasingly malicious even as they remained watchful as they listened to the boy that was obviously important to their Lord holding in his sobs so as not to seem weak to the mortals, before he paled almost as white as the five immortals across from him as he remembered the merchant that had come through town a few years ago who had used that word on the children of the villagers.

Finally managing to calm himself, Vanyel pulled back a bit only now noticing that Stefan had somehow managed to get them out of the saddle so the boy wasn't half hanging off the Strider. With a great gulp of air, the boy rocked back on his heels as he delivered the whole story of him breaking his arm and how he was now being banished to the capital so his aunt could beat him into behavior proper for the Heir of his father. The six glared around the yard before Stefan raised a crimson and black glowing hand and drew a complicated rune in the air before pressing it into and beneath the flesh of the willing boy's barely healed arm. A flash of black light surrounded the arm briefly before a bolt of crimson lightning broke the shell of black and shot across the courtyard weaving in and out around the other's as it trained on the one it was looking for before slamming into the arm of the Weapons Master who had walked out of the training salle when the guards first rose the alarm.

Vanyel ignored the man's grunt as his arm broke; instead focusing on the fact that he now had full feeling in his almost completely numb arm again. "That will take care of your arm, fledgling, as for being banished to Haven. Well I was headed there anyway, after getting to know you I decided to go to the Palace and see if these rulers of yours are worthy of an alliance with my ancient kingdom. We will travel with you." Stefan told the teen with a nod ignoring the flushed face of the boy's father as he rushed towards their group.

"What gives you the right to break my Weapons Master's arms?" the man roared out from his position a few feet outside the ring Stefan's guards were still stationed in.

"What gives you the right to have your man break the arm of your eldest son because you fear he might be fey?" Stefan asked with venom smirking as the man recoiled as if he hit him, though the boy next to him seemed to almost radiate confusion.

Turning his attention to the spluttering Lord as he tried to deny his King's accusations the guard nearest the man gave him a look that clearly said he was beneath him before asking, "What gives you, the backwater country Lord from a small Kingdom not even a millennium old, the right to demand answers from a King and five Dukes of a ten thousand year old kingdom fifteen times the size of yours?" he asked with an arrogant sneer.

"Now, now Wyvern," Stefan said with an amused quirk to his lips, "It would not do to insult one of the Lord's of our potential allies; Even if he is being unspeakably rude." Stefan turned to Vanyel, "Are you ready to go now, fledgling?" he asked.

"Yes, your Majesty." Vanyel said mischievously as he practically bounced out of the circle of guards to his horse and threw himself atop it ignoring his father as he tried to reassert his authority. Reining his horse to stand next to Stefan's the teen gave his father a cold nod before the seven turned as one and walked their horses through the gates. Once out of the gates the guards repositioned themselves, one in front one to each side and two behind before picking up the pace to the highest Vanyel's horse could manage without tiring turning their attention to the surroundings even as they ignored the arrival of the two guards from Forst Reach, though they made sure to block their path if they tried to get near their King and his little friend.

Two weeks later having made slower time then they would have after having to compensate for the speed Vanyel's horse could travel safely; he would have happily left the two guards behind but they stuck as close as the guards would let them like two annoying flies. Stefan's plan had been to give Vanyel a Strider so they could make good time but he would have had to explain about the horse before the boy would have traded it for his beloved mare, and he wasn't going to do that around the two guards and let that get back to the boy's father. Just as they pulled up to the Outer Gates of Haven Stefan turned to Wyvern his chief guard and ordered, "Get the name of a hotel these people consider fit for visiting royalty or see if they will give us a room in the Palace. I am going to go with Vanyel to make sure he will be okay." Harry turned to the Haven guard standing near him, "I am King Stefan Valrayven of the Furlin Empire, here to discuss a treaty with Queen Elspeth of Valdemar, with me are my Guards the Dukes Wyvern, Draconis, Dementia, Werelupus, and Phoenixia. Traveling in company with my party is Lord Vanyel Ashkevron, Heir of Forst Reach and two imbec- I mean guards assigned by his father." Stefan said formally trying hard not to chuckle at the overwhelmed look on the guards face as a senior guard obviously having heard his introduction raced over trying not to be obvious about elbowing the other guard to restart him.

"My apologies, your Majesty, we were expecting you more than a week ago. I am Guard Captain Heldin, I'm afraid the gossips at the court are all a twitter wondering where you got off to." the man laughed, "I hear the circle was about to send a Herald out to find you fearing something had happened to you on the road."

"Ah," Stefan said "No nothing untoward happened We stopped by to see my young friend here as we passed through that part of your Kingdom and when We found he was traveling here, We decided to ask him to accompany us so we got slowed. We were going to lend him a Strider," Harry said gesturing down at his horse who nodded regally to the guard, "which is comparable to your Companion's however every single Unbound One refused to carry the guards and as much as I wouldn't have minded leaving them behind it would have been unspeakably rude; even if we didn't invite them to ride with us." he smiled at the Haven guard who was glaring balefully at the two shifting guards.

"Well, your Majesty, please allow me to escort you and your party to the Palace. I'm sorry it's just me but I don't want to pull too many off the Gate." the Guard Captain said bowing to the group.

"It is fine, Guard Captain, we are well rested and not likely to take offense from much at the moment." Stefan said with a smile even as he subtly rebuked the man for not asking.

Watching the blushing man run to a stable looking building Harry chuckled; "Nice man." he remarked to Duke Phoenixia. Noticing the pride the nearby guards seemed to take from his comment.

"Yes, your Majesty, he is very enthusiastic." the Duke replied with a quirk to his lips that could have been amusement or scorn.

"Have there been any reports from our scout ships?" Harry asked, Head of his Scout Troops, Duke Dementia.

"Indeed, my Lord, they have reported contact with an ambassadorial ship from another race, the Alterrans." the man replied ignoring the confused and interested Guards around them.

"Oh?" Stefan asked as the Guard Captain rejoined them, receiving no more then a nod as the six vampires, or Furlin as they called themselves now, were all drawn into the conversation. "What was it that this ambassador was interested in?"

"She wishes to meet with you or one of our scientists who can explain the permanent Gates on our ships to her." Dementia replied. "Apparently they have been trying to build a network of interplanetary Gates and they wish to know if our… Gate technology," he hesitated checking the notes he had in his saddle bag to be sure how they put it. "can help with their plans."

"Are they Mage's then? To build a Gate with the potential to travel that far would take a great deal of power. Nothing we can't do but I am unsure if they have a powerful enough power source to get something like that to work more then once." Stefan replied searching his mind for the report Justyn had gotten from his Uncle in another Universe. He hadn't really been very interested in the report at the time though his son had eaten it up. "Just a second, I'm going to ask Garion." he paused waiting for his Guards and Vanyel who had been around when he had done this before stopped in the road and braced themselves before loosing his mind reaching out for the familiar presence of his husband and sending a mental hug.

: My love, is Garion awake? I have a question to ask him of that race newly into space travel we got from your Uncle Pan.: Harry asked mentally ignoring the staggering of the un-braced people around him, he was very old and his power had only grown his mind no less then his magic.

: Yes, Father. : the crisp mind voice of his son interjected having sensed his fathers immense presence.

: As you can see he is, dearest, what is your question? :

: Dementia has received a report from his Scouts of a run in with an ambassadorial ship from these … Alterrans, the ambassador onboard says they are trying to build an interplanetary network of Gates, do they have the resources to power something like that? : He asked posing the question to both of them.

: No, father, at this moment their power sources are powerful enough to move once from a nearby world, and by nearby I mean same system. :

: Do either of you believe it would be wise to Ally with them at this time? Even if we don't Ally with them, Do you believe they are responsible enough for us to help them with a power source for their idea at this time? :

: Not according to Uncle Pan, Love, but I will ask him to tell us when they are, if you like? He is one of the Elders in that region anyway. :

: Thank you, Husband mine. : Sending a mental laugh as his son drew out of the conversation in disgust Harry once again hugged his husband before withdrawing from the conversation.

"The consensus is that the Alterran's are not yet ready for either an alliance or a source of that much power without misusing either. Tell your scouts to leave with a polite no and an offer of help in the future if they are in need." Harry told Dementia as they started moving once again ignoring the staring of the Guard Captain. No one in the Palace would have felt that conversation, he thought, as he collapsed the shield he had put up to shield people too far away from the power of his mind.

Dementia nodded, gaze going blank as he sent his mind boosted by the power of his bond with his Lord streaming back to the communications room in the Palace and from there to the squadron of six scouts floating lazily near a ship with a basic snowflake design and gave them their orders watching through the computer as the scout ships dropped their message and withdrew slowly. "It is done, my Lord." he said as they stopped in front of the Palace.

A/N: Yes as you can probably tell I really like adding SG crosses into my stories this one wasn't really planned but I think it works atm anyway so I will leave it. The Alterrans or Ancients won't really have much to do with this story though if I go into the other books like I plan to they will probably have more of an impact after the Owl Knight series. I really need to get to a library and get copies of these books though as it's been awhile since I've read them and I lost my copies. I have the next chapter like half written but I'm having problems remembering little details of the book for instance does anyone remember what the names of Savil's students are? The two life bonded ones mostly. I apologize for the underlining that was in this chapter though I'm not sure how it got there when I didn't type it like that I fixed it.