“Bael!” Ringo barked, around a mouth full of steak. “Don’t poke the wee cat in the eye.”
Still sitting on the barstool, Ringo hooked a foot around his son’s waist and dragged him back away from the nervous black lion cub.
“Ringo Flinthammer!” came a voice from behind him. “What are you doing in Dun Garok?”
“Trying to eat,” Ringo said, reaching down and disengaging the toy wooden gun from his son’s mouth. “Hello, Matthias. I’ve been working with the League of Arathor. Every time we chase the Forsaken out of the farm house south of Trollbane Hall, they sneak back in.”
“Could you stop eating a moment?” Matthias Somerset said, shielding his face from the flying specks of food. “Please?”
“Only if ye were my wife or my king,” the dwarf mumbled, gnawing the meat off the bone, “And one has given up on asking and the other wouldn’t want me to.”
The Aldor paladin gave up and flopped down in a chair beside Ringo.
“Aye, Lucky’s Bael’s little friend. Bael! We don’t pull out whiskers!”
“Obviously. Have you seen Tamra Stormpike around? Captain Ironhill said he could help me reach Eversong Woods without running into any Horde patrols.”
“Oh, aye?” Ringo said, wiping his mouth on his sleeve. “I thought ye were still on the far side of the Dark Portal.”
“Kael’thas Sunstrider is alive,” Matthias said, his boyish face looking sadder than usual. “We thought we had defeated him, but then we headed back to Shattrath City and he taunted us through a fiery rune. So now we’re talking with the Scryers and actually sharing intelligence for the first time. I’m headed to Eversong to check out rumors that he’s close to reigniting the Sunwell. Want to come with me?”
“Can’t,” Ringo said, catching the wooden axe Bael threw at Matthias’ face at the last moment. “Got to watch the baby.”
“Where’s Beli?” Matthias asked, wincing in anticipation as Ringo handed the toy back to his son.
“Sleeping. Ye obviously don’t have any children. Bael, we don’t smack Lucky on the head with a barstool!”
“I’ll see myself out …”