Jobe caressed the polished wood of his violin as it sat on the stone counter. “Fine. It’s better in your hands anyway.”


The shopkeeper wiped a hand over his face. “I’m sorry. That’s all I can offer.”


“I know, Sam.”


Sam handed a heavy purse to Jobe. “Will you play it one last time for me?”


“I wish I could bring her back for you permanently, but I can’t.”


“Don’t say that. Not to me,” Sam shook his head. “I won’t ever see her again.”


“You will, Sam. A war is coming. Stay if you wish to see her sooner.”

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