“So these are the thieves,” the king said as he studied us. The look in his eyes did not carry an accusatory color. Instead, he seemed to find us interesting–at least at first. “Where is the ring?” he asked.
A guard gave the box to him. The king opened the box to check that the ring was there, then handed it to his queen, who was sitting silently beside him. According to my perception, that was definitely a wedding ring. Why did the king not show any negative emotion when he saw that the ring was in a box, and not on the queen’s finger? As the thought crossed my mind, I took a glimpse at the king’s hand. He was wearing an identical ring. So why wasn’t he upset?
“I didn’t steal anything!” Biyn protested.
“Did you then, servant girl?” the king asked me, in an even tone.
I shook my head no.
“Hmm…I don’t want to spend all night talking about this. How about the two of you go visit the dungeons, and then tomorrow morning, come up with an answer. Somebody did steal this ring, that much is for sure.” Having finished speaking, he rose from his throne, and held a hand out at the queen, who joined hands with him. Together, they walked out of the hall.
Biyn and I were half-shoved into one of the cells in the dungeons. The guards who took us there left, now leaving us in the hands of prison guards after informing them of what we were supposed to do there.
When the guards left, I glared at Biyn. “I didn’t steal anything,” I told him, matter-of factly.
“Please, Sigrun,” Biyn pleaded on his knees. “I have an entire family’s reputation on my shoulders. I can’t be imprisoned.”
“Then you shouldn’t have done it in the first place.”
“Sigrun,” he pleaded again. “Please. Tell them you told me to steal it. I have an entire family to lose. What have you got to lose?”
I sighed. “Just shut up.”
He was right.