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  • Cerin has returned to the cascade from his chase of Herons, though he still needed time to think about what to say to Zahara about what had been revealled. He left a drawing of the Crysanthamum on her pillow, along with a single one of the brilliant flowers then kissed her cheek. He then retreated to his own quarters to think, sending a servent for some food and drink.
  • Markuran storms past Cerin's quarters in a quivering fury, snarling and growling curses at Zahara in specific, Zahara in general and Zahara on the side. The returning servant nearly spills Cerin's tray of food avoiding the raging barbarian as he thunders down the corridor, making for his lair.
  • Cerin blinks and snaps himself out of his rather introspected ponderings. ...What had Zahara done to get Marku so riled? Scowled at a small child?
  • Cerin shakes his head and stands, thanking the servent for the food and asking her to set it down, then setting out after Marku, leaving his own thoughts about Zahara behind.
  • Cerin knocks on the door to Marku's lair.
  • Markuran snarls incoherantly at the door.
  • Cerin pushes the door open.
  • Markuran looks around from fiddling with a heavy lock on a jade-bound chest of iron. "What, Cerin?"

<Cerin> "What has gotten you so ..worked up? And do not simply say 'Zahara'. What has she done?"

  • Markuran makes a noise deep in his chest, as if he were trying to hack a stone from his throat. "She is cruel and heartless. She tortures and torments without consideration. And she *enjoys* it. She is no more fit to be Exalted then the droppings of a dead eel!"
  • Cerin 's eyes flash with anger. "I will thank you kindly not to insult her so in my presence. I do not want to kill you. Now, who has she tortured that has riled you so?"

<Markuran> "Everyone she tortures angers me...except the Deathknight. But she tortures Rovash even now and would torture him to the brink of death if I allowed it. When all he does is fulfill his oath honorably and act with decency."

<Cerin> "Torture him how?"

<Markuran> "She would throw him in that White Room of hers until he wastes away. Even now she will leave him prisoned there for four days, until I said I would throw her in there with him if she did not act honorably."

<Cerin> "She had her reasons, I am sure. Zahara does nothing without reason. And that reason is very rarely her own pleasure. Though there is nothing that says you must not enjoy nessesity."

  • Markuran curls his lip in a sneer. "Enjoy torment and torture of those who act honorably? Or those who are not evil? Those who might be redeemed and serve the correct path? These are nothing things to enjoy. No one good would do so."

<Cerin> "Markuran, Rovash is, for all his most pleasant and charming exterior, an alien creature from beyond the edge of the world. Perhaps you miss that not being able to see the magic that surrounds him, but there is nothing 'correct' about his existance."

<Cerin> "And do not lambast her for the treatment of the 'blooded in her dungeon when you proposed the same and worse to the hunt that was here last year. Hypocrasy does not suit a man of your stature."

  • Markuran bristles. "I would not do such to those unable to defend themselves."

<Cerin> "That is what you proposed to do. To the blooded and the mortals of the hunt both."

<Markuran> "Not when they were bound and chained."

<Cerin> "And to a man of your power, that they had free use of their arms means how much?"

  • Markuran returns a sullen glower to this comment. "It is different." the words are mere stubborness, ringing hollow even in Marku's ears.
  • Cerin is silent for the moment.

<Cerin> "Now, what has she done that offends your standards so, beyond something that you yourself proposed and the torture of something not even of this world?"

<Markuran> "She revels in blood and pain, Cerin. I do not. As you said, sometimes things must be done."

<Cerin> "And as I said, there is nothing wrong in taking pleasure in what is nessesary. Just because it must be done does not mean it must be unpleasant."

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