“Well that’s just freaking grand,” the other voice says. “Keep the status quo going and hope for the best. By Reth, sometimes I wonder if I’d have been better off staying in the colony and taking my chances.”
Reth? Colony? Is he talking to a grebling? It’d be unusual for one to be talking this freely to a human of high standing even in your time, let alone this one. It also seems a bit weird with the Lady’s apparent plans to take over the church – greblings generally don’t care about churches other than Reth’s.
“Don’t talk like that,” Drake says. “This safe haven isn’t just for you, it’s for everyone in your position. It won’t be easy, but it only gets harder if you give up on it.”
Safe haven? Wait. Could this be about the desert camp?
“It makes me sick that we have to depend on finding a human sponsor who isn’t disgusted by us. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve got nothing against you and I appreciate the help you’ve given us. But you can back out of your end of the bargain more easily than I can.”
“The Lady would end me if I did, but I suppose that doesn’t comfort you much right now,” Drake laughs. “Well, there’s one alternative. As you said, she’d come to me for backup. So perhaps I should provide it without waiting to be asked.”
There’s a pause. It makes you nervous.
“That’s a real risky move.”
“So is doing nothing,” Drake replies. “Still, you’re the one who stands to lose the most, so it’s only fair to let you make that call.”
What exactly is he offering? Doesn’t sound like anything good.
You’ve heard enough. Jumping in with your own offer is a lot safer than risking whatever Drake has in mind, even if you can’t actually do any more than arranging a meeting. So the question is how best to do that.