He's a sweet kid and she should maybe ask if he's okay. But he looks fine.
"Good luck," she says, and disappears in a puff of smoke.
Cor goes back to his room to think.
He thinks for a while.
He goes looking for Curufinwë.
In his office. "Cor!"
"Uh, thanks, but that's not what I'm here for."
"If someone I considered a friend - or a total stranger to be honest but that's not the point - if a friend of mine took up with somebody who was awful to their last significant other, current or past, I would warn them."
" - seems reasonable."
"I'm the only person around here who bought the line I was fed about Findekáno's hair, Curufinwë."
"I don't know what line you were fed. Findekáno is a political prisoner who the King at least likes it implied that he's sleeping with. I don't know what the arrangement between them is privately."
Sigh. "I am trying to figure out whether I can live here and a part of that is whether everyone here is - culturally incompatible with me."
Nod. "Like Valinor and us. I don't care who you're into, if that's relevant."
"That's... helpful but not really the... Findekáno was being kept under completely unconscionable conditions, which did involve sex. Maitimo fessed up and I have de-oathed Findekáno now and I'm thinking my way through everyone else and it would be just hilarious if I had to tell Maitimo 'I can overlook all the rape and the torture and the mind control but I can't get over the fact that everyone in your city overlooked it while you were still doing it'."
I'm glad he cut it out. I'm not sure what you think people should have - started another civil war?"
"I know the whole point of kings is you don't vote on them but it implies a lot of coordinated ignorance that I didn't hear anything about it at all."
"He did in fact tell everybody to be friendly and helpful and say absolutely nothing that might endanger the war effort, but at least to me he didn't say anything specifically about Findekáno. Do you mind if I talk to him -"
"To Findekáno or your brother? Either way go ahead, I know people are having multiple conversations all the time and would have specified if I didn't want you osawnwëing people while we were talking, let alone separately."
"My brother, I don't actually know Findekáno."
Kind of chancy picking up the kid while doing things he'd be furious about and arranging for him not to hear.
I know. It was stupid. I got what I wanted but there was probably a sense in which I was gambling.
Probably a sense in which you were gambling?
"What would you have said if I had happened to wonder about the haircut while I was hanging out with you instead of while I was with Maitimo?"
"That they settled the civil war by really aggressively signalling that Maitimo's authority was uncontested and the hair thing was part of that, it means - I don't know if there's a human equivalent -"
Definitely gambling. I'm sorry.