The Aftermath Of Mount Woe Chapter 39
The Survivors (?)
Schala wearily opened her eyes, hearing Ertai's tortured wail very loudly in her mind. 'I've failed them. I've failed everyone.' She turned over in her bed, coughing up more of that mysterious charcoal like substance. 'Why am I still alive when everyone else is dead? Am I really alive? Why did she bring me back?' She turned over again, every part of her body aching. 'I can still feel the dagger inside me... When will it claim me again? When... can I die?'
Dalton stormed down the tunnels of Algetty, glaring at the dirt, incredibly angry at his lack of free will. 'So I really am a monster.' He thought disgustedly. 'Only a monster would slaughter children. I shouldn't have submitted. I should have let myself die, there was opportunity enough. Didn't I know she would use me like this? Why did I let it happen? For power... Power for revenge. But these weren't my enemies. Schala is still alive, sort of. I've failed Besroda...'
At that thought, a wooden staff clocked him on the head, and he went sprawling to the ground. Normally, his men would have jumped to subdue the culprit, but now, they just stood behind him. "You fool!!" Dalton looked up, to see an old man he didn't recognize yelling at him.
"Who are you?" He asked, rubbing his head.
"I'm the leader of this village now, thanks to you!" He spat angrily. "You're a complete fool. You think your family was the only one to survive Besroda?"
"What?!" Dalton demanded, actually feeling afraid.
"The Vecars were traditionally the captains of the Besroda knights. Unlike you, I haven't forgotten my history, you total idiot!"
"NO!!! Its not possible!"
"Its the truth. What reason do I have to lie? You're the worst kind of person alive, slaughtering the innocent for a non-existent cause." The man turned his back on Dalton and walked away.
"No! It can't be true! It just can't!" Dalton sank to the ground, holding his head in his hands. 'If Greven hadn't died, a Besrodan would have ruled the world! Sure, he loved Schala, but that would have been a small price to pay. Damn the power of Lavos! What can I do?... I can topple Zeal, that's what! If someone can kill Lavos, then she'll have no power over me! Once she's gone, I'll put Ertai on the throne, then let him kill me for what I've done. But who can kill Lavos? Ertai and Schala! I know they can, if I can just get Schala away from Zeal. One thing history shows for sure is that those Alleganians can do just about anything if they have the will to. But what if dying stripped her of her power?... Then, I hope Ertai hunts me down, before I do anything else. Please, Ertai, as long as Lavos is around, try to kill me.'
'I will.' Dalton whirled in surprise, but saw no one. 'As soon as you let your guard down, as soon as your soldiers turn their backs. As soon as you sheath your sword, I'll be there, ready to strike.' Then, his presence was gone.
"Schala?" Janus asked timidly as he opened the door to the room where she had been placed. She hadn't come down to breakfast, so he had taken it upon himself to bring her a tray full of food. "How are you feeling?"
Schala didn't respond right away. She had spent a miserable night, a dull ache permeating every cell of her body. She had woken up from her nightmares every once in a while to vomit an ugly black substance over the edge of the bed, which somehow was not there now. She slowly sat up on the bed, taking in her surroundings. "Awful."
"Maybe some food will make you feel better." He suggested helpfully, setting the tray on a table.
"I don't think I need food."
"Of course you do. Everybody needs food."
"It won't make any difference. I stopped breathing last night. It didn't matter."
"What?" He asked, almost afraid of her.
"I held my breath for over fifteen minutes. Nothing happened." She slowly stood up and walked over to the table.
"I don't understand. I don't know how I can help you."
"I don't think anyone can help me." She said. Then, she picked up the a knife from the silverware. She looked back at Janus for a second. His hair was getting a shade closer to blue every day. She almost smiled. Maybe he could kill Lavos. "Don't you understand Janus? I can't die!" She turned the knife on herself, and stabbed it up to the hilt in her chest.
"Schala!" Janus gasped.
She pulled the knife out, then stabbed it back in again several times. It made a sickening sound each time, but no blood came out, and the wounds closed up almost immediately. "I can't die!! Why won't she let me die?!"
"Schala... You're scaring me..." Janus began to back away from her.
"You should be scared Janus." She sighed, then suddenly charged at the window, which was closed, and smashed through to the outside.
Janus watched her body disappear over the edge with horror. "Schala!" He ran to the window, being careful not to cut himself on the jutting pieces of broken glass. He saw her sprawled on the ground far below. "Are you all right?!" He shouted, realizing it was a stupid question.
Then her form began to stir. She rose to a half kneeling position, carelessly pulling the shards of glass out of her midsection. "Of course. I'll always be "all right." Never good, never happy, but always all right." Janus remained silent. He probably hadn't heard her. Then, a thought struck Schala's suicidal brain. 'Where was Violen through all this? Only she had the power to stop it. Why did she abandon me?' No answer was forthcoming.
"They killed my family to deny me a future. They fed on my ancestors to deny me a past." - Crovax
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