Evil Marku Markuran is still grumbling when the two arrive in Qian's office again. The Infernal doesn't acknowledge their arrival at first....
Thousand Faced Man After a moment, he turns. "There has been a slight complication."
Cerinfernal "So Siram said."
Thousand Faced Man holds up a piece of paper. It has several sigils on the outsides, and in the center is neat handwriting -- Lai's. It's written to Markuran and indicates that he made a deal requiring the two Solars to meet with Zahara and the others, and that by the terms of their agreement Marku would need to assist.
Cerinfernal 's eyes narrow at the mention of Lai even as his heart pounds at the thought of seeing Zahara again. "I see."
Thousand Faced Man Markuran notices that Qian does not appear to be interested in talking, grumbles for a moment, and finally takes it upon himself to explain. "He thinks we have a deal -- I get my revenge against the Sunlands, and I help him get into the Imperial Manse."
Cerinfernal "Revenge on the Sunlands? For what?"
Thousand Faced Man Markuran's eyes flash, then darken as Siram slides into ascendance. "For everything." His breathing takes on a loud, animalistic quality.
Cerinfernal isn't quite sure what he could be talking about. So far as he could tell, Markuran's woes were self-inflicted.
Thousand Faced Man Markuran looks at Cerin with those dark eyes, while Qian seems entirely unconcerned.
Cerinfernal "So," he says, ignoring Markuran. "I assume from the fact you have mentioned this letter that we will be going to meet them."
Thousand Faced Man nods. "Yes. We need to maintain Lai's cooperation for just a little longer."
Cerinfernal "Where is the meeting to be held?"
Thousand Faced Man provides the information.
Thousand Faced Man After doing so, he leans forward. "Cerin, listen to me." He speaks with a low, quiet tone.
Cerinfernal "They choose the meeting place then." He says, even as he inclines his head to listen.
Thousand Faced Man "It is imperative that we not allow with our plans."
Thousand Faced Man "It is imperative that we not allow this to interfere with our plans."
Cerinfernal "Of course." He says, the worn nature of the phrase apparently lost on him. "Beyond not mentioning the fate of the Seals, what does that involve?"
Thousand Faced Man "The other Solars must not anticipate that we are aiming to capture the Seat of the Deliberative. They must remain focused on the threat of the Red Lily. Do not let them know any of what we do here." He leans forward further. "And you must NOT be captured." He emphasizes this in a way that Markuran is clearly oblivious to.
Cerinfernal nods simply.
Thousand Faced Man Assured that Cerin is a reliable employee, Qian leans back. "Good. I am certain you will handle this to the best of your ability, then. When you return, we have some final preparations, and then we can begin readying you for your final assignment."
Cerinfernal "Very well." He nods and departs.
Evil Marku has prepared himself in his best evil finery for the occasion of the meeting, and the Grim Reminder glints as he examines his scarred arm curiously. He speaks to the air around him: "Big day."
Cerinfernal inclines his head in agreement. "Just so." Of course, he hasn't changed his appearance for today, head enclosed in its sleak red helm, the many ribbons fluttering in a confusing breeze. It could be especially big for you.
Evil Marku looks himself over one more time, ensuring that his appearance is as immaculate as possible. "Zahara's going to be in quite a state, I would imagine."
Cerinfernal "Yes." He says, a small part of him wishing there was regret in his voice. "I cannot imagine this will be the calmest I have seen her."
Evil Marku rubs one of his arm scars absent-mindedly. "I hope she can hold it together. It will make this more pleasant for all of us." He looks around at the insectile walls of the room within Sarifen's tower where they stand. "I'd prefer not to stick around. Meet up, respectfully decline" -- he grins devilishly -- "to rejoin their righteous crusade, and take our leave."
Cerinfernal "I see your thoughts run close to my own in many ways."
Evil Marku nods. "Good, good." He grinds his teeth for a moment. "Lai Misuna is even more of an idiot than I thought when I opposed him. I cannot believe he agreed to this deal."
Cerinfernal "I think the war has pushed both to rather ... desperate lengths. When considered like that, it is hardly surprising."
Evil Marku nods again, and looks over at Cerin, his usual non-serious demeanor replaced for a moment with grim certainty. "You know we may have to kill all of them."
Evil Marku ^-- change to "we may have to kill them."
Cerinfernal nods to indicate that this is a possibility. It wasn't particularly a large one. He had no desire to fight Zahara. And the sense not fight Thirteen on a battlefield he chose.
Evil Marku "We will have to kill them, someday." One of his eyes tics a little. "Not Zahara, maybe. But the others. Birds, Kai." He does even manage to look a little sad at the idea.
Cerinfernal nods. "It will be an interesting fight."
Evil Marku nods. "Well, I suppose we shouldn't keep them waiting any longer."
Cerinfernal "Indeed not."
Evil Marku Without another word, Markuran opens a hole of fire in the air.