We arrived today. We wove through the city to shake off someone following us. People all around seemed to be acting … differently. As if something had happened. Something that had been anticipated and awaited for for a long while. A relief.
We wandered until a friend of Maryam confronted us. We were rushed to the safe house where you and Captor were supposed to be staying. No one greeted us with gifts or refreshments as usual. Something struck Maryam, her face going white, muscles rigid. She whispered a quiet “no” to the empty air. A troll from across the room nodded her head solemnly. Then I, too, was struck with it.
They’d captured you both.
I couldn’t move. Couldn’t breathe. In that moment, I could do nothing but stand, staring, unbelieving. Someone sat us down and began explaining a recount of what had happened.
You’d both gone out to get food. A civilian spotted you. The guards came. Chained you up. Led you like animals to the Highblood. An appointed person stood up in front of a crowd gathered in the city square and read off a long list of “heinous acts” that you two had committed.
It was decided that Captor, given his skill in technology and psionic powers, was to be forced to work under the Heiress. His life, at least, would be spared.
Your punishment was to be far more severe.
They planned to string you up by a set of shackles that were made specifically for your wrists only. They’d be made red hot while you were beaten in the city square. People would watch. Cheer, even. Then once the Highblood was through with you, his favorite archer would make the kill. Your dead body would be left on display for two days after. A final humiliation. An attempt to give a warning to anyone who might have wanted to follow in your brave and righteous footsteps.
Once hearing of this, Maryam ran out into the night. She couldn’t handle it any more than the rest of us could. Losing the one she went out of her way to raise abnormally. The orphan she had found, and fled her life before to bring you up like a lusus. She raised you well. You became more than she ever expected. Losing you would be crippling.
I was paralyzed. Unable to cry. Utterly dumbstruck.
My love is to be executed, and I am helpless against saving him.