The trial of the witch

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From the depths of her jail, Yiris remained silent. She had let herself led chained from Irini, and was insensible to the bystanders who watched her, to the rumor that ran.

She knew that her end was near and calmly prepared to confront her death. Alone, looking out the window of her prison cell, she squeezed her little Orthodox cross between her fingers, reciting the few prayers she remembered.

Her powers of false-person were limited: her body was still most human. She could, of course, project herself in the air and show a rare force and rapidity, however she couldn't escape by melting into the ground.
In any case, she had gone to the end of her will, so now she accepted with resignation what will happen.

The majority of her soldiers refused to see her as a monster, but it was not unanimous. Several skirmishes had taken place between the men.

That night wouldn't be as serene as Yiris.

Van traveled through the empty apartments of the palace, trying to put his ideas in order after this difficult day.

Tonight, Hitomi slept peacefully, watched by Merle. When the King had returned from the royal mausoleum, she had begged him.

"Van, please, forgive Yiris, I saw what she lived. If she has hurt me, it's because it was her last chance.
She just wanted to know why she was on Gaea, and thought Folken was the key ... I'm sure she feels remorse for having attacked me ... Please don't blame her!"

After those words, the young woman had collapsed from fatigue. Passably lost, the King sought to understand the acts of Yiris.

He had always had absolute confidence in her. There he had just been odiously betrayed.

At their first meeting, he had felt her peculiarity, they had discussed about it together. He knew his career, but apparently not all the details ...

What suffering could push her to do that? What he considered a betrayal shook his world, this sensation of security that he had managed in his life to establish after years of doubt.

Another fact still disturbed him. He saw the empty coffin again ... No trace of his brother, except the clothes he wore for his burial.
On this point, he had no precise information yet. A messenger had been sent to Irini to know what had happened to Alexandre and he was waiting for his answer.

Suddenly, Hylden, out of breath and on the edge of panic, burst into the room, breaking Van's meditation.

"Your Majesty, at last, I find you! You have to go down right away ..."
"Why?" The King said, astonished because not accustomed to see his calm general as panic.
"With all due respect, I don't have the words, you must see to understand."

Decidedly destabilized, Van followed Hylden and arrived in the courtyard. There was an escort of cat-men, apparently from Irini.
At first, the King thought of a support group to plead the cause of Yiris, then he had an unrealistic vision.
Descended from horse, supported by the immense Lekan, sub-chief of the village, his brother appeared before his incredulous eyes.

Because, yes, he was no longer really Alexandre, he had grown old, paled, his hair had changed of color, and, above all, he gave him a happy look with his eyes, whose pink-red shade remembers the energist.

That calm and gentle smile, that benevolent expression, years of memories passed in a few seconds in the mind of the King.

It didn't make sense, it was impossible, it defied reason, and yet his older brother had returned to him.
He couldn't find words and, to express himself, he could only approach his elder and press him tightly in his arms, moved to tears.

Folken was also upset, living again was extraordinary, but seeing his brother gave an even stronger emotion to all this.

Meinmet, who had come to see what was happening, had stayed behind and shed a small tear in front of his reunion.

After a warm embrace, Van took his brother's arm over his shoulder and carried him to his room.

"I guess we have a lot of things to tell each other ..." Folken ironized. "Actually, I don't know how to start ..."
"Me too ... But, take your time, my brother, you have to rest. You had a great shock today and a serious wound."
"Yes, but what happened to me totally defies my comprehension. Since I remembered, I'm trying to understand in vain ... Ten years ago, I felt myself die, then I had these few visions of the sequence of events, and suddenly a voice said to me "This is not yet finished for you", after, the void ...
Then I woke up on a rainy night in the Crimea, on the Moon of Illusions, rejuvenated with my arm back.
I met Meinmet, we traveled a long time to finally find Hitomi, return to Gaea ...
All this is so confusing, I would like to understand why ..."
"In my opinion, that is still the kind of thing that goes beyond our understanding. On the one hand, it bothers me, on the other, I am so happy to be with you again. You think it was your conversation with Ruhm that made you remember?"
"No! Of course, that disturbed me, but I know that the revelation is Yiris who offered it to me by giving me my broken sword.
Without her, who watched over this blade as a relic and saved my life on the lake, I couldn't have been able to become myself again. Van, I beg you, spare her ..."

Sitting beside his brother, the King sighed.

"You know she has also used the magic of false-people to attempt the life of Hitomi?" The younger asked, a little edgy.
"Yes, and in that, she did wrong, but she would never will kill her, I'm sure. And anyway, if she do that, it's because of me, so if she has to pay, me too ..."
"You don't have to agree with her methods!"
"Certainly, but they took advantage of me. Moreover, I was told that she had used a taboo power to keep me alive, so on this point, just by being alive, I agree with her."
"I presume that this is the method of the seal of soul? She had explained to me that she had "benefited" of this, if it could be said this way ..." Van replied, puzzled.
"Yes, that's what it's all about. Without her mastery of the forbidden science of false-persons, I wouldn't have held the shock. I beg you, spare her ... I owe her everything! You cannot deny me the right to repay my immense debt to her."

Saying these words Folken was seized with vertigo. Visibly, at the end of his strength, he dropped into the bed with his hands on his head.

"Van, don't kill her ... I beg you..."
"Rest, forget it ..."

The Sovereign remained pensive for a long time, seated beside his brother, who, after long pursuing his advocacy, had fallen asleep under the weight of tiredness.

Moments later, Meinmet came to take news and proposed to his nephew to relieve him at the bedside of Folken.
Accepting the proposal, the young King left the room, leaving his exhausted brother to rest and recommenced his wandering in the corridors.

After all, he wasn't surprised that Folken to defend Yiris. Like Hitomi, they felt that she had acted as a last resort and wouldn't have gone to the end.
To these two voices in favor of the criminal were joined those of Meinmet and Hylden. Van had well understood that a large part of the Tusk Army also shared this opinion.

But he did not agree with this. He had every confidence in his soldier, and by attacking what he had most precious in the world, she had committed the worst crime in his eyes.
She would be judged and condemned for it.

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