Sacripant and Quiet were staring at the barricades, where Ghouls and Milesians were busily repairing the damage, preparing for the next attack. It was madness, Sacripant thought. All this effort to keep hold of such a small place.
“He wasn’t always this bad,” said Quiet suddenly. “When we were children, he was sweet, and kind. But… then his father died, and he tried to get himself named Amirant, and…” She shook her head. “The worst thing is, we used to talk about… reforming the Tribes. Making Irem--right again. And then, he--it all went bad. It all went so very bad.”
Sacripant looked at her. “None of which is your fault,” he said quietly.
“I know that,” said Quiet with a sob. “But sometimes, my heart doesn’t.”
Sacripant said nothing, but merely held out his hand. Quiet took it. They sat there for a while, until they heard a polite cough.
The pair turned to Justinian. “I… was wondering--if you want to talk about Hagen.”
Sacripant shook his head. “Do you?”
Justinian was silent for a moment, then looked at his feet. “I didn’t know him… that well. But he always struck me as a--soul whose foundation was in joy…” He took a deep breath and shook his head. “I-I’m sorry. I’m not making much sense, from your point of view. Half of this is just--Palamedes is broken up about this… and… I respected the… Ogre.”
“For a scion of darkness,” said Quiet softly.
“For anyone,” snapped Justinian. “I--the Holy Light put you here for some reason. It has to be more than just us killing one another.”
There was silence for a moment. “Well, nice that you think that now,” said Sacripant. Quiet tugged on his sleeve. “Wha…?”
Several villagers were being lead onto the barricades, their hands bound in rope. A thick-set, muscular Milesian oversaw the process, nodding in satisfaction. As soon as the villagers were in place, he turned to the Cthonique forces.
“Morgaine Cthonique! We have considered your offer--now consider ours! If you, your Guards, your Kizaks, and your Muster do not allow us to leave freely, with our client--we will execute these villagers!” The Milesian chuckled. “Well, what have you to say to our offer?”
Justinian, Quiet, and Sacripant stared at the scene before them in shock. “Oh, shit,” muttered Quiet.