Interview with Saska

(Recorded before Saska vanished for a time amid the Pilanese)

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Blue: My lady, you appear sad. Why is that?

Saska: I’m sorry, Blue, I know of your work, but I really don’t think it’s anyone’s business. Besides, I have somewhere to be.

Blue: Just a few moments. You know I don’t have to write it down; it won’t take long.

Saska: Taranis has wondered how you’re able to remember everything so well.

Blue: I’m not being interviewed, am I?

Saska: Hmm. Someone should. But I don’t have the time.

Blue: I’m thinking it’s a man. Making you sad.

Saska: Loss makes us sad, friend, whether of a loved one, a way of life … hope, faith, health … many reasons.

Blue: It’s a man.

Saska: Not that I’ll tell you.

Blue: And now you run from him. Do you hope he won’t find you … or do you hope he’ll act with sufficient commitment to discover your hiding place?

Saska: Neither. Both. Argh, he drives me insane!

Blue: Who, my lady? Perhaps I could put him to the question.

Saska: Oh, good luck with that. He won’t talk.

Blue: I’m thinking now it can only be the one they are calling Enchanter who does this to you. I’m also thinking you should expect as much. An enchanter? That is a lonely calling. He will find it hard to commit to a personal relationship.  Not so?

Saska: What do you know about it?

Blue: And there you confirm my suspicion. They call him Torrullin, I hear, and his name means Lifegiver and Destroyer simultaneously. My lady, how do you hope to reach through to someone like that?

Saska: By loving him, damn it! Not that it matters! He has chosen another! She is … argh!

(Saska dematerialises at this point, her pain and anger causing her to flee. Blue is left wondering how she can create an opportunity to speak with Torrullin.)

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“I have no more to give.”

Outside, the bright globe of the moon rode the skies high, and celebrations erupted.

Inside, the might of two armies fought the three who dared challenge the Darak Or, and attempted to swipe the irksome bird from the ceiling.

The darklings hissed, for the constraints of space frustrated them, although not as much as their inability to deal with a woman, a man obviously not made for battle, and one who was, but who was also exhausted. The soltakin made not a sound, but their amber eyes fixated in expectation.

All knew it was a matter of time.

Phet tried to find a way through the water hole, dodging swords with much squawking, and returned nearly drowned.

Too small, he sent, even for me.

“Our goose is cooked, my friends,” Lanto said.

All three were bloodied blue and red, their swords slippery.

“Lanto?” Saska murmured.

“Nice knowing you, truly an honour,” Lanto said, and tossed his sword into the air. It passed through an astonished soltakin before lodging in a particularly nasty darkling slashing at Phet. “Yes!” Lanto crowed, and sank onto his haunches amid dead and dying darklings, laughing hysterically.

Saska reached down with one hand to drag him up.

He shook her off. “I have no more to give.” His head lowered.

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The Drowned Throne