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She’d lived in the town of Badwin her entire life, never once had she been roused from sleep in the middle of the night by yelling. Not even when the new king’s war had been going on had there been such commotion on the road.
Light, from what she assumed were torches, bounced across the wall, drowning out the candle’s flame and chasing away some of the shadows. Rolling over, she tossed aside her blankets and rose to her feet. The worn floor rug muffled her steps, her nightgown brushed against her ankles as she walked.
She didn’t bother to grab the half-burned candle on her nightstand; she didn’t want anyone to know she approached the window. Chilly air had found its way through the multiple cracks around the window; it flowed over her skin as she cautiously approached the old, warped frame. Goosebumps broke out on her flesh, but she ignored them as she peered out the window.
Beneath her, on the snow covered street a dozen horses and men had gathered. All of them wore white cloaks and had their hoods pulled up against the wintry air. The animals pranced back and forth restlessly, the breath pluming from their nostrils curled up in thick waves toward the sky. Their hooves kicked up snow around them as the group of riders tried to keep the animals steady.