The Road

[V.O. Alastor] 32

Even though the two years I spent in the Library were all inside just one building, sometimes this world seems somehow smaller. It made me smaller. All that violence and emotion just shut down the best parts of my brain, even for just that instant. So easy to forget everything in the heat of the moment, all that will and fire to remake myself and my mind…devoured by desperation. All that Awakened enlightenment, crushed under a heap of fuckin human limitation. Every day I hate the Lie a little more.

Did I really leave Asphodel behind forever, fall off my path, give destiny the finger? Maybe. Maybe not. Who the fuck knows anymore. Maybe Artemis can tell me. If she’s not too pissed off about how I almost killed her, jesus. She didn’t seem pissed off, though. Couldn’t read her aura at the time but she’s not usually that quiet when she’s angry. Or quiet at all. …don’t like that I had to do that. Not to her. Not to the girls. Never thought things’d come to that. Too much Princeps in me, still, too much of the monster. But what the fuck was I supposed to do? She was about an inch away from putting an arrow straight through Rhiannon’s skull, and I couldn’t get out of my goddamn head to stop her telepathically.

More than that I wish to god Rhi hadn’t been there to see it. She was already freaking out, though, before the Hunters even knew where we were. Wish it didn’t feel like she resorts to crazy shit like bombs when she’s desperate because of me. Sometimes I think she wants to show me she can be hardcore or something, why doesn’t she understand? It’s funny, looking at the big wars between us and the Obrimos in history, it starts to look like just a bunch of hypocrisy if you stare at it too long. Means and ethos, angels and demons, none of it really mattered in the end. In the end they were all just mages making chaos because they got angry, got desperate, had too much pride. Because they were human. But Rhi’s not like that. Why does she want to be?

Almost wish I’d had the opportunity to punch Flare a couple times, though, maybe that ghost would’ve gotten the fuckin hint. Still, wasn’t a lie, what I said to Rhi. No way in hell does Flare let that asshole nest in there forever. She’s good enough with the wheel to’ve found her way back out before the storm was over. I’m not too worried. And maybe she’ll be upset we didn’t go after her but frankly the city’s too important. If it’s true we couldn’t’ve gotten back then it was a choice that had to be made.

…oh, the city’s too important, you mean the one you’re watching go straight to hell while you’re sitting here on your ass in the sanctum? Yeah, her. My city. My. Fuckin. City. Feel like I did the day they got Boston, but a hundred times worse. Like I gotta do something, right the fuck now, but at the same time I can’t be stupid about it because there’s people trusting me not to screw up. So I just sit here and let it happen, I hate this. That piece of shit on the phone. Can’t believe I told my daimon I wanted to change his mind. All I want right now’s to feel his blood on my hands, god, how can I make myself do any less? How can he possibly deserve anything else? There’s nothing decent about that scumbag. Justice told me to trust my own judgment, that I had a code that would guide me, but all it’s telling me right now is to wipe that bastard off the planet.

Alright, alright, think. He’s taking orders, he’s just a cog in a big bloody war machine. Killing him’d stop him but it wouldn’t stop the machine. He has to be brought to justice but that means making things right first and giving him whatever he deserves after that, if he survives this fight. If all goes well there’ll be a new Council in place that can put him on trial. Your job is to make that happen and convince him not to be such a shitstain in the process. Breathe. You can do this.

Need to find Hermes, find the House. Figure out how to ask the city what she wants from me now. She’ll tell me how I can fix this. Just gotta listen harder.

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