After avoiding her sister for some time, Nina was unable to do so one evening. She approached the station and sat down, ignoring Erin’s presence as best she could.
Erin’s hands trembled. “I am so sorry,” she whispered. “I had no right to say those hurtful things.”
Nina looked up. She fluttered her eyes in an effort to hold back her tears, then smiled weakly. “I’m sorry too. I love you, my sister.”
After that night, the two talked whenever they could. They filled one another in on the details of their lives as Zarek’s slaves. While they dared not let others know of their relationship to one another, they each took comfort in the presence of the other. Eventually they spoke of the possibility of escape.
Erin’s work with the slave women was just one of her many duties. During the daytime she ran one of the emperor’s private kitchens. The position required that she prepare orders for food, kitchen utensils, linens, decorations, and other assorted goods. Non-slaves oversaw all of her work.
It would be difficult to collect items on the sly or to order shipments not deemed reasonable. Still, a plan slowly took shape. She would order product from select vendors whose enterprises were located well outside of Fallique. When a delivery from one of them was due in, and if Nina was to attend that evening’s event, they would steal away with the departing vendor.
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