CHAPTER SEVENTEEN: FUNERAL PYRE
Daru laid a blanket over Ianus’ body. She brushed her hand over his cool
forehead. She didn’t know what to do. Not knowing what was wrong with him, she
could not help him. She walked over to Ianus’ bag, and rifled through it, looking for his
Slowly, she thumbed through the pages. The sheer number of worse case
scenarios that filled the book amazed her. Hundreds of horrid deaths and nightmarish
imprisonments but she didn’t find this. In fact, she couldn’t even find a reference to the
Vaticinars at all in the book.
Arun walked over and crouched next to Daru, “This is all my fault, isn’t it?”
“No,” Daru forced a smile, “He wanted to come here. He knew the risk that’s
why he didn’t want any of us to come with him.”
“He asked me why I told him to go to Tai-wer. I don’t remember saying it. I
don’t remember a lot of things, but if I did say it… I can’t let him die.”
“Do you know what we need to do?”
“I thought we could take him back to South Gate for medical treatment.”
“I wouldn’t do that,” Valeryn called out, “If we move him, he will never wake
“Do you know what’s wrong with him?” Daru asked.
Valeryn walked over to her, “I’ve seen this before. They imprisoned him within a
simulacrum, which means they’re still around here somewhere. If we take him away
from them, he will never escape. He will become a mindless drone, or worse, die all
“Is there anything we can do to help him?”
“We can sit vigil and pray. This is something he has to do for himself. We can’t
do it for him. You did do a good job standing up to the Vaticinars. I don’t think they
were expecting that.”
“But Valeryn, they see all,” Daru giggled, “I just don’t think what they do is right.
Why would the Enmadra employ people like that?”
“You can’t imagine how many people think they have been chosen to serve the
Enmadra, or even the Raewyn for that matter. You have to discourage the charlatans.
You know, separate the wheat from the chaff.”
“What if you loose some wheat with the chaff?”
“What would you do if millions of people were running around impersonating
members of the Jade Moon, raising armies, leading revolutions, and committing terrorist
acts all in the name of the Bahn Se’leen, what would you do?”