"You should've stopped it before it went this far," Jonathan's tone was low, and angry. Alanna was uncharacteristically quiet while her king rebuked her.

There wasn't much for her to say. Yes, her husband had left the country without permission to find their daughter. Yes, George had even sent Aly large amounts of money to aid her in fomenting rebellion. And finally (and most damning) yes, George had taught Aly everything that he knew, making her a terrifying and formidable spymaster to have just a short voyage away. The only reason her husband wasn't in stockades already was their close relationship with their monarchs. Any other king would have arrested him already. Alanna knew all this, and so she sat silently in Jonathan's private study, listening to him scold her for the better part of an hour.

"Gods curse it Alanna!" Jonathan snapped, his tonal shift letting her know he had switched from speaking to her as the King, and was now chastising her as a friend, "If he isn't careful I'm going to end up with no choice but to hang him for treason!" Jon sighed, his head in his hands now.

"I know George was born a commoner, and they have different ideas of loyalty and honor, but you have to talk to him, Alanna. He can't keep helping the spymistress of another nation, even if she is his daughter."

Alanna snorted and shook her head, "Oh Jon. And people think I'm stubborn. You know very well George will do as he pleases, he'll just get sneakier about it."

At this Jon couldn't help but smile a little. He stood up, and reached for the bottle of fine brandy on his shelf.

"Fine, I'll accept sneakier if I must," he said, pouring them each a healthy glassful, "I just don't want to end up executing one of my oldest and most loyal friends. Plus, it'd really put a damper on our relationship."

Alanna shook her head a little, and Jon thought he detected a hint of a smile when she replied, "I suppose it would."

"I can't believe he sent her a chest full of money," Jonathan shook his head and grinned, "How on earth do you put up with someone who is so insane about their kids?"

Jon's smile disappeared when he heard Alanna softly reply, "Because I know what it's like to have a father who isn't."

At that they finished their drinks in silence, each absorbed in their own troubled thoughts.

Author's Note:

Inspired by this Tammy comment:

"If he'd been sensible, maybe now he wouldn't be staring across the strait at his greatest competitor. I don't think their Majesties are pleased–do you?"