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8 Descending Fire, RY 768

  • Cerin waits for Rannath to settle in after returning from his trip of several weeks. He knocks lightly on the general's door.
  • Rannath opens the door, looking well-rested and quite a bit happier than he has in some time. He's dressed in his red and gold silk outfit, and there's a silver ring on his right ring finger. "Yes?"
  • Cerin 's eyes flicker down over the ring, his eyes raising slightly "You had a pleasant trip I hope?"

<Rannath> "It was.. good."

  • Cerin nods, he smiles then looks apologetic "I'm sorry to have to mention this to you so soon after your trip but, I think you should follow me" he seems slightly uncomfortable
  • Rannath eyes Cerin oddly, shrugs, and steps outside, closing his door.
  • Cerin leads Rannath through the twisting passages of the maze, to one of the less well travelled corners of the manse. He knocks on a section of wall "I'm here with Rannath, Zee"
  • Zahara palms the control, and the seemingly seamless wall slides back to reveal Zahara standing at the threshold of a dark, intimidating room, lit only with blue-white flares of essence.
  • Rannath raises an eyebrow. "Secret rooms?"
  • Cerin steps inside "That is not what we have to show you"
  • Zahara smiles slightly, "It IS a maze." she offers, and steps back to allow the others entrance. The room contains a single grooved stone table with embedded shackles in the center, and several ebony cabinets along one wall. 5 doors lead off of the central room.
  • Rannath steps inside carefully, suspicious.
  • Zahara chuckles, "Don't worry, Rannath. This room is not for you."
  • Zahara sweeps graciously across the room, her fire-colored robes a stark contrast to the gray and black decor. "Be warned, though, our friend here is no mortal." She raises her hand to a plate near a very solid looking door, but does not press it yet. "Our friend is an Exalt. Remember the break-in?"

<Rannath> ..Yes.

<Zahara> "We have determined that the God who appeared in our manse, has Exalted this one." She palms the plate, and the door slides open with a grating noise.

<Cerin> "Thats not quite true Zahara, I merely believe it was by the same proccess. His" he indicates the man in a the cell, wearing the uniform of an infantry man of the Legion "essence is that of a tree god"

  • Zahara lofts a brow, "Ahh, excuse my mistake. You didn't mention that, so I thought he was the same."

<Rannath> ...

<Zahara> "Meet Bertrand." she says, as the door opens, revealing a cowering man. He has torn clothes and is covered blood, but doesnt actually seem to be injured. His uniform is that of the Legion.

<Rannath> "..Traitors within my Legion."

<Zahara> "He has..repented."

<Zahara> "Haven't you, Bertrand?" she asks him sweetly

Bertrand, covered in sweat, looks up at Zahara with utter fear in his eyes. "Y....yes, mistress Zahara. I am very, very, very sorry."

  • Rannath twitches. "..Repented."

<Zahara> "Good boy."

Bertrand looks at Zahara and, noticing no obvious objection, prostrates himself before Rannath

  • Zahara smiles like she's done a good thing.
  • Rannath holds out a hand to Zahara. "Hammer."

<Zahara> "What size?"

  • Zahara walks over to one of the cabinets, and opens it, revealing silver and iron hammers of various size and pointiness
  • Rannath walks over and hefts the largest iron hammer, turning and slowly walking back to Bertrand with barely-controlled fury in his eyes.
  • Zahara puts a hand on Rannath's shoulder, "He may still be useful, however."

Bertrand backs away on his hands and knees, abjectly terrified. "P... please, Lord Rannath. P...please don't kill me. I didn't know what I was doing when they ordered me to join the Legion...."

He scampers quickly enough that he slips and falls on his back, looking utterly pitiful.

<Rannath> "You desire mercy, then?"

<alsoquin> "Y... yes, Lord Rannath. I will do anything."

  • Rannath turns to look at Zahara, idly swinging the hammer back and forth. "And what use will he have, eh?"

<Zahara> "He knows information about his God, who is plotting against us. He may also be able to send false information, dictated, of course, by us.

<Rannath> "And this god.. the one who left the red petals behind?"

  • Zahara looks at Bertrand, "Do you know of a god that would do such a thing?"

<Cerin> "It was an Exalt who left the petals behind, I think. There are at least two gods in this conspiracy...The Hidden Order Of The Red Lily, Bertrand here called it"

<Bertrand> "W... when I was... after I was Chosen. I was spoken to by the man who ordered me to join the Legion and report on its movements. He was clad all in red, and a god with the form of an unending tower of flowers, each contained within another, stood behind him.

<Bertrand> "His name was Lai Misuna, and the god's Unfolding Petal."

<Zahara> "See how useful?" she looks proud.

  • Zahara crosses the room to the cabinets again, and opens up another. It seems to be mostly empty, aside from a few shelves worth of paper. Some ingenious paper-cut method perhaps? She lifts a sheaf of paper and carries it over to the others. There's hardly any blood on it.
  • Cerin nods absently
  • Zahara smiles at Bertrand, as he cringes away from the stack of paper.
  • Zahara hands the stack to Rannath with a little bow. "He has already helped us greatly by telling us what he has sent his previous master."
  • Rannath nods. In one smooth motion, he lifts the iron hammer and brings it down on Bertrand's head twice in a blur. "Then his use is ended. The Unconquered Sun does not suffer traitors."
  • Zahara 's weapon appears from thin air in a blur as it intercepts the hammer, "WAIT!"
  • Rannath turns his gaze to Zahara. "Why?"

<Zahara> "Did you forget the part about passing false information to these gods who plot against you?"

<Zahara> "Can you imagine the possibilities? We could set up an ambush."

<Rannath> "Zahara, he is.. *was* a soldier under my command."

<Rannath> "Betraying a false faith is well and good, but he has turned his back on his secret masters *and* the Unconquered Sun. There is nothing left for him."

<Zahara> "He is a pawn, nothing more. Why destroy your opponent's pawn when you can capture it and use it to check the king?"

Bertrand lies on the floor, crying piteously and attempting to beg for his life between sobs.

<Cerin> "And Rannath, if he dies, others of your men must too. He must die in battle, not in some cell in the heart of the Labyrinth, they must not suspect we uncovered his spy"

<Zahara> "He can claim his Exalted nature allowed him to hide himself from our eyes when we searched the land for traitors."

<alsoquin> Zahara suddenly realizes that the wasps which bore Markuran and Birds-of-Trinity to the Marukani lands have returned, well before schedule.

<Zahara> "We'll deal with this later... Something has happened." She palms the door closed and shooes everyone out the door, which she also closes.

<Cerin> "What has happened, Zee?"

<Zahara> "Markuran and Birds are back, far too early."

<Cerin> "Ah, that is disquietening"

  • Zahara winces as the shout rumbles through the very stones of the manse. "See."

<Cerin> "Ah, yes"

Tags: (:tags Bertrand, Red Lily, Unfolding Petal:)

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