Epilogue: War

 

 

 

Tale of War, as composed by the poet Alimsa Leyverne in the year of our lord 1102, shortly after the end of the Domain War

 

 

“Oh! Oh cry the poor orphan, lying in the streets when father or mother go to war!

  Cry oh poor widow, poor husband whose loss shall ne’er be mended, whose heart shall ne’er be whole again.”

“Be ye man or elf or rock-hewn  dwarf, may ye find no solace upon the field of blood, for therein lies only sorrow, only the shame of blood shed in the name of utter madness.  For all there is naught but death, only hatred leads to this eternal slumber, only bilious and vitriolic disregard for life will thrust the sword into flesh, sunder the limbs of the righteous and wicked alike.  No hand shall stay the blade of those who seek blood, for it is a river that cannot be dammed, an ocean that cannot be stopped.  Once the tides of blood roll into the far shores only more blood will sate the thirsting sands that cry for more.”

“Oh poor soldier, poor saddened and delusional soul who fights to kill for no reason more than insult to pride and pomp!” 

“Oh poor soldier, dying for the sake of those who desire power, who desire land, who desire coin and payment of life and limb!”

“Do not walk to war my good soldier, do not walk to certain death, to certain horror that will ne’er stop!  Walk in peace my good soldier, walk in health and happiness!  Cherish what is given, take your life and live good soldier, do not throw away life for certain death, cast certain death aside for a content life!”

“Oh to those who point at the soldier and tell them ‘Go to fight for me!’, ‘Go to fight for your country!’, ‘Die for your country good soldier, die for those who want power!’, may those who crave coin and power find the food their coin buys turns to ash in their mouth, their drink to poison, and their women to festering flesh that will corrupt even the holiest among them.”

“Oh to those who crave, may their days be as torture and their nights be spent screaming the names of those they have sent to die!”

“Look away good soldier!  Do not follow the pointing finger of those who tear you from life towards death, look away from the battlefield to home and hearth, to where children play and loved ones remain!  Look away good soldier, look away!”

 

“There is a reason the woman was excommunicated and later slain.”  Pelajin said as he worked his jaw around.  Standing in the shadows where she had chosen to read the last known work of the bard Alimsa Leyverne, Sirena chuckled softly at the both the woman’s naiveté as well as Pelajin’s reaction to the writing.  She couldn’t help but find amusement equally in both, seeing as how war had once more come to Mydest.  Smiling a little wider Sirena closed the book, speaking softly as Pelajin snorted in derision.

“Beware priest, idealism can be a dangerous weapon, as you well know.”  The fat priest sank into his chair a bit more as sipped at his goblet, his third since Sirena had arrived only an hour before.  The man had been grossly fat only a year ago, now he actually had trouble raising himself from his seat at times.  She was not about to help him, but she found it difficult not to laugh.

“Idealists are like insects Sirena, they have no true grasp of how the world works.  Idealists are often the first casualties in any war.”  Pelajin was in a foul mood, such as he’d been for the past day and a half now.  Reports kept coming in despite his order for privacy in this troubled time.  He was needed to look at this, to sign that, approve these, it was all simply too much at this moment to handle.  War should be simple, pit one army against the other and the one who could think fastest and hit the hardest should win.  He’d never imagined it could be this complicated.

“And yet dear Alimsa was not slain until after the war.  How curious.”  Sirena chuckled as she saw the sour look upon the grandmaster’s face, her mirth no doubt placing him in an even fouler mood.

“Be careful Sirena, do not invoke wrath where it is not desired.”  Her smile only deepened as her eyes became hard, expressing the anger she would not show the corpulent priest.  He did not deserve her anger, only her contempt.

“When this war is over grandmaster, we will see who learns to fear who.”  Pelajin rolled his piggy eyes towards her, doing his best to glare at the woman even as he tried to pick her out from the shadows of the room.  The soft lighting provided by the small fire in the hearth did little to nothing to reveal her, allowing the shadows their due as she hid among them as she always had.  Sirena wanted to kill the man here and now, but she would wait.  Eventually the opportunity would present itself, and then there would be no one to stop her.  Then Pelajin would know the true meaning of fear.  She would make sure of that.

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