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The Sublime Overlord of the Realm
There is very little loyalty within the heart of a mercenary other than loyalty to the coin that he has been paid. No cause nor motive will sway him even if his employer is an evil person. There are, however, exceptions to any rule. The coin must be good and the employer must prove that he can pay. The enemy that the employer points a mercenary to must be one that the mercenary either feels is a challenge worth accepting or one that he can overcome. And lastly, the employer must still be alive or have a system in place by contract to continue to pay. If any of these things is upset, the entire system falls apart. The seven men that stared at Shayne, Sigh, and Barriego from the main chamber of Westrel's manor apartments could see that two of the main rules had been suspended. It's true. He's dead. Let's move out. The man who spoke was seemingly the leader of this group. He sheathed his sword and motioned for the others to do the same. Shayne was graciously leaving them an out without bloodshed. No coin could be spent in the Underworld, regardless of the god a man believed in.

Are you... are you sure...? Another peered at the crumpled body lying in view of the door that Shayne was exiting.

Chickenshit ain't screaming no more, eh? Proves it enough for me. Let's get us some souvenirs and leave. That seemed to be enough for the rest who sheathed their swords as well and left along with their commander. The sounds of their boots scraping on the flooring faded into the distance.

Sigh still seethed inside, her fingers twitching spasmatically. It was not Barriego inside her head, she knew. It was not his way and he already had a contract with her. Had it been Farigos or Calsylar, she would have assumed it was them sending her seductive tendrils of power. No, Mistress. What you are feeling is simply yours. Barriego's remark startled her. He had read it from her face.

Mine? Confusion.

Have you no notion of your familial line? Sigh shot him a nasty glare as she moved forward into the other room that the mercenaries had departed. The Memnemik line.

As you might recall, my "family" and I are not quite on friendly terms, Barriego. Sigh's voice was waspish as she wiped her bloody fingertips on a sitting chair's cushion as she pretended to inspect the room's fineries.

The Memnemik line stretches back for several centuries. Powerful in magical strength, your line has subjugated the masses, plaguing them with fear or simply beating down their resistances with power instead of brawn. As the family grew in early times, there was contention between siblings. Rivalry sprung up and family turned on family until only one remained. And so it has remained. Only one shall remain. As it is, when one of your line continues to practice your craft, be it elemental, demonic, divine, whatever, your skills grow. Power will radiate from you and allow you to more easily cast your spells just as, say your husband practice swordsmanship, you shall get stronger in time. This is your legacy. Sigh's brows pulled nearer together as she thought. She was silent for only a moment before glancing back to the glass stick man.

And you knew this from the very beginning?

Yes. His reply was monotone. Sigh's head jerked, her face livid suddenly as she realized it. I was a fool! He used me! He knew it all along! Barriego played on her thinking, made her angry enough to forget that she had made love to her husband and had forgotten her herbal tea. It was easier to play with her when she showed her emotions. She never realized that he was inside her head, plucking at the strings like all demons did.

Dismissed, you... you...! It was too late to find the word that she wanted as Barriego shattered to the ground like a broken vase before disappearing into the flooring like water. I'm such an idiot! Shayne, let's get out of this hellhole. I've got someone I need to kill. Her voice was clipped, her fists clenched, and her walk was closer to a stomp as she made her way towards the door. She either needed to kill something soon or make very violent, passionate love to someone. The contradiction was not lost on the woman.
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Whispers in the Wild and a Vengeance · Pathways of the Five Pilgrims

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