There were days when Jarl hated his job.
Well, that wasn’t entirely fair. Most of the time Jarl was quite happy with his job. Challenging work, good people, a good cause. There wasn’t much to object to besides the occasional shady dealings.
And then there were days like this day, where he almost wished he’d not taken up the mantle. Wished he’d just let the beast underneath the World Tree eat him, or Vali kill him rather than whisk him away.
Maeve, the Winter Lady, had personally tried to kill him twice. Mab, the Queen of Air and Darkness, had indirectly tried the same three times. Neither had succeeded, and the misunderstanding (never hurts to be polite and not mention attempted assasinations) had been cleared up.
Of course, that didn’t keep him out of their influence. Quite the contrary.
Which is why he found himself in Arctis Minora, at the behest of the Queen To Be. Apparently, their Knight was, as Kringle had put it, “indisposed,” a polite word for “not quite dead,” and as such, they had required the service of another Knight, and single Kringle just happened to have one handy and needed to mend fences with the Queen of Air and Darkness, well…
So that’s why he strode into Arctis Tor, longbow slung over his shoulder, sword on his hip, every magical item he owned somewhere within easy reach, and a cold iron dagger in his boot just for good measure. He wasn’t about to be caught dead.
Of course, it never hurt to be polite. As his presence was announced, he made a short, curt bow in the direction of his host, and, for the present, the one whose orders he was following.
"Lady Maeve, Queen Who Is To Be of Winter. I am, it seems, at your service." At least for now.