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The saga of Vic and Bree continues.

She cleared her throat.

"Alone again, no one guarding your back, no ladies to chaperone you. It is good Lady Viviane appeared before things got out of hand."

"You were spying on me?" she asked. Evelyn walked to the window and was rewarded with a view of her garden. Drest and Viviane were still there, but had chosen to take a tour of the grounds. She turned away and stared back at Benedict. "Then I am to have no privacy -- ever?" she asked.

He shrugged his shoulders. "You are the Queen and your privacy means little to me," he admitted.

Evelyn glared at his back. She hated how he turned away from her and spoke with her as if he were her better. Drest's words came back to her and she knew that how the Chancellor behaved toward her would eventually be the way others chose to. She could not allow his disrespect to continue, no matter how much she feared him.

"Do not turn away from me," she said. Her voice was shaky, but loud enough.

Benedict turned and with a raised brow looked back at her. "My apologies," he said, as if he almost had been waiting for her backbone to appear.

"I understand that you have chosen to detain Rebecca in the dungeons and she has been questioned by your men, yet she gives you no answers - or at least answers you do not find truthful."

Benedict's jaw tightened. "You have no need to worry yourself in regards to prisoners. We have the traitor under constant guard and she'll not harm you or anyone else in this realm."

"I doubt she harmed anyone prior to her capture either."

"You say that even after your friends have been attacked and your adoptive parents slain?"

"Do not call them that. They were my parents; they do not need to be called 'adoptive'."

He said nothing and for that Evelyn was grateful. "My lady-in-waiting is my responsibility and I wish to see her and to question her myself. You will take me to her now," Evelyn demanded.

Benedict's jaw tightened further; Evelyn could swear she heard his teeth scrap against each other as he fought for control over the words he ached to spill. She waited for him to concede or battle with her. The former was her reward and she followed Benedict out of the room, down through the halls and even further into the bowels of her castle.

The air was moist and the stench of excrement strong. "I want this sty cleaned immediately!" she hissed as she covered her nose.

"It is a dungeon your highness."

"That is an excuse only a man with little regard for life gives. Have it cleaned or have it filled. The only creature who deserves these dwellings is The Spectre."

"As you wish," Benedict answered. He approached one room, where a guard stood at the door ready for any unseen foe.

"Open the door," the Chancellor said; when it was done, he and Evelyn stepped through, the guard followed, a lit torch in his hand cast light on the room. Rebecca lay on a cot that was stuffed with straw. Several ends poked out. The room was no cleaner than the other parts of the dungeon and Evelyn knew the girl would most likely suffer nightmares from the state she'd been forced to live in -- even if it had been a short stay.

Evelyn moved to approach the girl. Benedict grabbed her arm and hauled her back. "Are you a fool?" he screamed, "she is your enemy yet you approach her as if she has done no wrong?"

The Queen jerked free and stared at the Chancellor. "How dare you touch me," she whispered. He shrank back slightly. "She is not my enemy until I find her guilty of the crimes you accuse her of. Take care of her. I want her bathed, and dressed. Now!"

The sound of their voices echoed off the walls; Evelyn turned when she heard the woman on the bed rustling. "Your Majesty?"

Rebecca's voice was soft and broken.

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