Ye Olde Inn was not a venue Ashira found herself in often. Usually only once every thirty to forty trials, give or take. That was when the messenger from the Eastern Settlements passed through Andaris, and she got any notes from her family and gave one in return. Her husband communicated much more quickly with the Wards of course. His father would even hire a dedicated courier on occasion if the message had enough coin riding on it. Her own family, the Thorns, were content to send things the slow way, bartering medical treatment for postal service as it were. Why not? They never had anything overly pressing to say. Occasionally her mother or father would pass on the case notes for anything interesting they'd treated.
Ashiras messages in return were hollow, worthless things. Or so they seemed to her. I'm fine, everything is wonderful in the city, Everett and I are very happy.
Lies. But there was no profit, no advantage to be had in the truth. Crying to anyone would not improve her lot. Only she could do that, with her own effort. And she would, in time. Until then, lie.
She suppressed an annoyed sigh, glancing around once more for the courier. Where was he? She briefly eyed the most recent arrivals, but none were familiar to her.
Still, her attention was drawn back to them, first in annoyance at their volume level, and then in some slight interest as a man who had been writing addressed them. Imagine that, someone presumably properly literate here. Barring herself of course. Clearly she was the exception. Schooling might be provided to a degree, but she still found that most people had to read with one finger dragging along and their mouths moving. What interest would someone educated have in their yammering? Unless of course he was going to tell them to be silent. Which while she could sympathize, might not be the smartest move.
Instead, the topic of discussion was horses. And their murders. Equinicide? She did not think that was actually a word, but then, how often was it needed? Her mind turned immediately to the Clydes. Not as suspects, though she supposed they could be. Instead she briefly opened her own letter home and scrawled a quick addendum.
Perhaps mention to the Clydes if they've any stock they deem not good enough for racing, as well as the shortage and hike increase caused by the civil war, horses are apparently currently being killed, or such is the 'word on the street'. I am sure the perpetrator will be caught shortly and it is no cause for alarm, but with the shortage of horse flesh already, this can only drive prices higher. A good time to sell what might not move otherwise.
They might already have someone keeping an eye on the market here, but they were generally so caught up in the world of racing alone, that unless race horses had also been targeted.. It never hurt to have someone owe you. Particularly if the favour you did them earned them a lot of coins. People tended to remember that sort of thing.
Closing the letter and slipping it back into its envelope, she turned her attention back to the five men, dark eyes unreadable as she waited to see what would come of the writers inquiries.
There was, her hazy memory of an offhand comment prompted her, also the chance that rather than being monetarily motivated, this was one of those individuals who started killing animals and graduated to humans. She'd have to keep that in mind. Not that she did much wandering in dark alleys, but she was in the habit of going out alone, often to fairly secluded spots when searching for specific plants. If a certain area was being targeted, well, she'd just avoid it, simple as that.
Thorns treated the body. Someone else could figure out the mind.
It was probably coins though. It usually was.