Refusing to believe Abrecan would betray her Rheda goes to confront him, unaware of his alliance with the Wulfing, whilst at Herot Slean and Breca prepare the inhabitants for battle. Slean also shocks Beowulf by admitting that he knows Elvina to be a skin-shifter. Rheda has cause to regret her faith in her brother when he exposes Slean's past collusion with him and threatens to kill her unless she signs over the Jarlship to him. However she is saved by an unexpected act of self sacrifice and is able to make her escape.
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