Because there was no natural light underground, there was no natural day for Salvo and his brothers and sisters to live by – their days would begin and end as and when they were required to.
Being woken up to a knock on the door Salvo got up and walked across the cool stone floor. Opening the door he was greeted by Sister Gabriel in The Watch’s more causal attire of silk robes rather than steel armour.
“Father Lorenzo has called for us to discuss yesterdays events,” she explained.
“Then I shall prepare myself and meet with you by his chambers shortly,” Salvo replied.
Nodding in approval Gabriel turned and graciously walked back down the corridor. Several times Salvo had let his trained mind slip and see Gabriel for more than he was supposed to. They were brother and sister in arms and their religion disobeyed them from personal relationships but Salvo once again found himself wanting a human relationship with someone – with Gabriel. Her robes fell about her as if to taunt Salvo into this train of thought, the curves of her body and motion of it as she padded around the corner were increased tenfold.
Snapping back into reality Salvo dug deep and placed his primitive desires inside of them before burying them with the other gravestones of emotions he had moved away from. He wouldn’t let his instincts get the better of him, they never had before and they never would do. But recently this sort of thing was becoming more frequent.
Closing the door and changing into his own robes he started to think about the young man he had taken a life from only a few hours ago, the lack of sorrow he felt for the loss of Brother Leonidas and twinge of paternal instinct that the young girl had brought in him. It used to be easy, it made sense but it was as if recently he would see himself from another point of view, as if he were a ghost watching the actions of his body and noticing the things he had come to take for granted.
Exiting his chambers, Salvo headed down the softly lit corridors and towards the meeting room he knew to meet Lorenzo and Gabriel at.
He could remember the first time he walked down these corridors, he had been 5 years old when The Watch had taken him from the orphanage and he remembered the feeling of awe and wonder as he took in the enchanted runes that had been carved into the stone walls to light the underground passageways. The feeling of wonder only ever increased as he was taught the ways of the cleric, to believe and have faith in Marqué and in return she would grant you powers common folk could only ever dream of. Then when he had turned 18 they granted him a hammer and armour of his own, to keep and care for as they would care for him and all of his years of training had become relevant, never in his life had he felt more at home than when he was keeping the people of this city safe. Was his work still being done to keep them safe?
Arriving at the council room Salvo was invited to enter after knocking on the solid wooden door to find Father Lorenzo sat at the head of the table with Gabriel stood to one side of the long, oak table. Taking a standing position opposite Gabriel, Lorenzo invited them to sit. Lorenzo was one of the founding members of The Watch and one the few who was still alive. Roughly 60 years of age, Lorenzo had a cleanly cut silver beard but bold as was the tradition of the order for the men. He wore more ornate robes than Salvo or Gabriel and his eyes looked old but if you looked into them you could see they were more alive and animated than their appearance suggested.
Taking a seat he looked across to Gabriel, her long, platted red hair hung over one shoulder and her youthful looking face gave Salvo a brief smile as he thankfully found his primitive desires had gone… for now.
“So,” Lorenzo’s frail but kind voice spoke, “I noticed we have a couple of visitors in our house?”
“Yes father,” Salvo replied, “The woman didn’t warrant any need for more than questioning and a small time of imprisonment for being involved with the violent actions of others and the girl-“
“Yes the girl,” Lorenzo interrupted, “She is very… unique is she not?”
“I’m afraid I am missing something?” Gabriel questioned.
“You see my child, the girl you apprehended yesterday has the purest and most unblemished of souls, more so than I have ever seen before?” Lorenzo answered.
“That is likely to be a trick, an enchantment to hide her true purpose if it is truly as pure as you claim,” she suggested.
“These were my thoughts exactly but I wanted to meet with the two of you before making a decision as to what we should do with her.”
Taking his chance to share his opinion Salvo spoke, “it is my conclusion that whether it be a trick or not there must be something truly important about her for a group of rebels to fight so hard to protect her. Because of this we should care for her and keep her close until this purpose is found, maybe even introduce her into our ranks if she was not some sort of hostage for one of the noble families?”
“Again this is something I have too considered,” Lorenzo agreed. “After speaking with the girl last night I have concluded that she isn’t a child of wealth and knows not her purpose but she does show defiance in defending those who have hidden her for reasons unknown. Your suggestion of making her part of The Watch would be more welcoming however if she weren’t as old or as wise as her years of hiding have made her unsuitable for our training. She would likely reject our ways plan to escape this house at her first opportunity.”
“Then what is it you suggest we do with her Father?” Salvo asked even though he knew the answer.
“To keep her would be too much trouble, to let her go puts us back at the beginning of this venture and her ways will not be changed so much as to join us. It is my opinion that she be allowed to pass through to the next plain of existence.”
“Execute a young girl!” Salvo found himself saying out loud before he knew what he was doing, “But surely father, this is against our beliefs?”
“We cannot cater for everyone Salvo, and to stop evil from happening before it begins is one step in the right direction.”
He couldn’t stop it, all of a sudden a dam of emotions burst and flooded his mind and heart as a well of defiance got the better of him. “I will not stand by and let this happen, if needs be I will care for the child myself but it is my belief that she cannot be accused until she has done something wrong! And if you still say she is to be executed then you will have to go through me first”
He could see sadness in Lorenzo’s eyes at Salvos emotional turn, looking to Gabriel, he was only met with a look of surprise and worry for what he had done. But for the first time in a long time, Salvo felt he was doing the right thing.