The same despair that clung ragged to her words clawed at the back of my throat, and I had to cough to shake it loose. “Fighting broke out in Kalberk, and Varay went to assist. Apparently, some of the soldiers who fled from Blackbend made it to Kalberk and warned them what was happening. Instead of surrendering, the highbloods in charge of the city locked it down and dug in.”

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