Something in Jasper twinged in irritation at Sam's words. No, if he was honest, he was already annoyed. How hard had it been to get Ruve to relax and tend to herself in this time? Damn hard. She insisted in working herself to the bone, regardless of her own happiness or needs, and all of it to try and solve the puzzle of Tobias. He'd worked to get her to relax, to take things slowly and, in his humble opinion, Ruve had still managed to make significant progress.
Yet, here they sat, and Ruve dissolved into apologies and bad feelings for not doing what she knew she ought? It made him want to yell, to demand that everyone thank Ruve repeatedly for all of her hard work, for them to ask her pleasantly for their tasks in aiding her in solving her quest.
Instead, they got Sam bitching about the time spent and lack of progress. Where had she been during all of this? Tending to her own needs. Did it occur to her that some at this table hadn't had such a vacation? Even Aurelia had been busy hunting.
Well, he considered it a vacation, truthfully. Yeah, he'd work and furthered his own Name, which had been no small amount of work, but he'd spent it with Ruve. That, alone, made it a delight. Perhaps the feelings he was experiencing was at the thought of losing her, again.
No. Likely not. Couldn't be.
Still, he forced himself to stay silent for a few moments while he finished his soup. "I'm sure that no one at this table wants Tobias to be a cat, yeah? That's the one thing that focuses all of us, from one angle or another. And I think it's fair to say that all of us, when we get the first piece of the puzzle, are gonna unite to make sure that ain't the case."