It's been about four weeks since Ma'ar and Carissa departed in the Void-ship, and so far they've heard no news. Which is exactly as expected, but still leaves Leareth feeling restless and impatient.
There haven't been any spy reports with actually-new information in almost a fortnight. It seems likely that Asmodeus' indirect agents are still trying to learn more, and failing to get past the palace's precautions, and of course there isn't much new of interest for them. Leareth is, at this point, attending all of his commitments and catching up on routine work.
The Andalite ships have arrived, ready in hyperspace, with the human Aroden in command, giving Leareth daily updates on the state of their various battle plans. Leareth isn't sure how long he can make them wait there before it becomes a problem, but he intends to stretch it out as long as possible - and maybe they won't ever have to fire their weapons at all...
Leareth is in a meeting with some city representatives when the ward-alarm interrupts.
He makes some excuse, his brain forgetting what it was as soon as it's said, and slips off into a side room to trace down the details of the alarm -
- which he's just barely done at the point when the second alarm hits.