Man: I have left Costantinopoli and set sail for the interior of Anatolia, to a region called Cappadocia, where Manuel is training his soldiers. If I am lucky I will not be alone, for there may be Ottoman spies in the area waiting to strike. But, as ever, I put stock only in myself, and hold the memory of dear Sofia close to my heart. Claudia, you would laugh to hear the racing thoughts of your brother now. I have come to admire Sofia with more affection than I thought possible. After the death of Cristina...something withered in me...but that feeling...that capacity for love, has returned. I adore Sofia, but dare not drag her into this life of mine...not without fear of hurting her, or driving her away. No evidence of an army here. And no sign of Tarik's men.
Woman: Not so close.
Man: Easy now. Tarik sent me.
Woman: Only you? Why not more?
Man: I am enough. Where are your men?
Woman: Captured by Byzantines over a week ago. I was dressed to look like a slave, and managed to escape. But the others...Are you a capable fighter?
Man: I like to think so.
Woman: Well, when you are certain, come find me.