The missive was unrolled on the table. Liam slammed his hand down onto it, trying hard to make his point. He was only a teenager, but he wasn’t going to be too afraid to voice his opinion anymore. He was scared and angry, and he flat-out disagreed with his father.
“You may take your leave now, Liam. I have heard your thoughts on this matter and do not appreciate this display.” Genn took another sip of his wine.
“What if this plague comes here? What then?” Liam pressed.
“That is why the wall divides our great nation from the others,” Genn snapped back. He was starting to feel a tad drunk, and this conversation was giving him a headache.
“And what if these creatures get through your wall? What then, Father? Moreover, what if we could have done something to stop it beforehand?”
In one rushed motion Genn stood up and threw his goblet, still full of wine, hard across the stone floor. “How dare you question your father, boy? Take your leave!”
The goblet tumbled and clanked, spilling wine across the floor like blood from a freshly opened wound. Liam stared at it, startled, before he spoke again.
“No, sir. I will not, until you have heard me out. Truly heard. Truly listened for once. They are pleading here, Father. Lordaeron only asks for our aid in a most desperate time. They are dying by the moment. These are not requests for tariffs or?…”
“They are requests of weakness! Do you want to go out there? Do you want to face these monstrosities? Is that it? No. I will not risk the life of my son or any son of Gilneas. My father would not have, and neither will his son!”
“Always with Grandfather. Always. It’s as if you yourself are not king, just some steward keeping the chair warm until he returns.”
“How dare you, boy?!”
“There are other ways to consider…. This son would make different choices than his father.”
“When I was your age, all I wanted was to be like my father. That is a prince’s duty.”
“And I thought it was a prince’s duty to one day be a great king.” Liam turned away. He knew this argument was lost; his father would do as he always did.
“Get out of my sight! Go, go far away!… The wall will protect us, boy,” Genn called out, stumbling into his chair. “It will hold, and Gilneas will always be great… always!”
His words echoed off the empty chamber’s walls.