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40 Days Until Retribution And the Uncertain End (part 2)

Evester did not look up when the door was opened to his cell. Had he not given them enough to work with? He’d been honest, even when they used their torture spells to make him spill every detail of his relationship with Zeydar. Secrets that he’d held willingly had been ripped from his lips, and he was angry about it. He’d bee cooperative, and yet for some reason they’d thought he’d bee lying. instead he’d given them salacious details of their lives. Evester was mortified.

What more could they want? He didn’t understand magic. He didn’t understand what Zeydar was planning. Did they want to know more about the gold book? He doubted it, after all they had not pressed on it after learning that it was about relationships for the Igilistals. Evester did not want to give them another detail. He had a feeling that he had no choice.

“Get up.” A man’s voice.

Evester rolled over to look at the man who stood watching him. He rolled back onto his face. Who was this man? What happened to the woman from before? Evester should have known her name. Zeydar had said her name many a time saying that she was his mother, but he had to admit their torture method was excellent at getting him to remember details he wanted a secret, and forgetting things he needed to know. Who could this man be? How would he find out?

Evester had a feeling that knowing who this man was, would be a direct consequence to his survival.

“What do you want now?” Evester asked.

“Get up,” the man repeated.

Evester groaned and sat up, not wanting them to use the spells again. He was held against the bed by magic and three mages walked in with their pens of magic ink. Closing his eyes, he let himself get consumed by the ink fumes and pain that hit as whatever herbs they used reacted to his skin. He bit back a scream and focused on his breathing. This was different from before. Before the pain came later, this time it was upon inscription and the marks were disappearing as they were written.

“Why are you doing this?” Evester bit back blood and bile as he forced the words out.

“Today is the last day,” the man told him. 

Evester snapped open his eyes, to stare at him, confused. The haze vanished, for the smallest of moments. He had full clarity. His fight or flight instinct had activated, and his heart was racing. “What do you mean?”

Evester winced as the herbs reacted greater against him. He felt his heart beat skip, as if trying to slow him down and to make him lethargic once more. What were they doing?

The man did not answer any further questions, not that Evester was able to ask many more as the pain consumed his thoughts again. Evester was caught halfway between clarity and pain, intense relief and anguish. There were hallucinations, lethargy, the world dulled, and slowed. All his senses were muted, words were muffled, and his tongue was heavy. Evester knew the horrors of Dreams from memories, that were then replicated in front of him in the form of visions of Zeydar sitting on a bus shaking.

Evester tried to pay attention but every moment he tried, his thoughts and hope waned. He knew but did not know what was happening. He understood but did not understand. The long nights, the continual pain, the questioning, every moment had been to break them, but for —

When they finished, they dragged him from the room. Evester was not sure how much time had passed, and his mind felt like mush: on the cusp of realization and unable to fully breach the surface. Heia sat in the room chained against a chair, leaning over herself. She looked the way that he felt. Evester was placed in the other chair with his back against her’s and strapped down. They were then left in the room alone with each other.

“What’s going on?” Evester managed to ask her.

“I don’t know,” she snapped, the pain evident in her tone.

“Something for Zeydar.”

What was it for Zeydar? Why could he see Zeydar sitting on the bus, as if Zeydar was there in the room with them? Why? Why? What was it? What had they —

“Obviously.” Heia hissed. “Did they mark you too?”

“Whatever it is, is dangerous.” Evester could feel his skin peeling where the herbs were painted. His mind was screaming. He felt as if ants were digging into his veins from nail holes along his body. His blood was being thrown out and his head was screaming. His vision swam in colors and sights: Zeydar on the bus, Zeydar in Valaria, Zeydar in the tent, Zeydar in the club staring at Evester with wide eyes.

The music was pounding. The lights were blaring. He was a teenager again, and Zeydar was before him, younger. Zeydar had once had a look of adoration, anticipation, and lust. Now it was pure terror. His eyes were wild, in need to flee. He ran. He ran. He squeezed Evester’s wrist. He clung to him saying: no more.

Evester hissed out, the thought finally able to articulate itself, not that Evester could fully comprehend it. He knew but he did not know. He looked around the room and saw a large mirror on one of the walls.

Dreams and mirrors. Flames and screams. Dreams and mirrors. Too many days in interrogation rooms.

“Do you know why you’re here Evester?” Evester knew the voice was not real, it came from some time and place. Another him, sitting with arms crossed in a chair snorting and motioning over to the wall. He would not talk. They already knew they could not do anything to him. Not with who his mother was. Not with who is father was. Not when his grandfather was on his way.

“Is that what I think it is?” Evester asked.

“What?” Heia looked at the window, he could see her face in the reflection. She was struggling just in the same way he was.

Evester laughed to himself. Today is the last day, huh? Evester had a bad feeling about who would be watching them in the room, from the window.

Focus on me. Evester began to tap against the chair with his fingers, a rhythm that he knew from having recording it himself.

“Heia…” Evester whispered.

“What is happening Evester? What—“

“It’s some magic mixed with Dreams. I’m certain of it.” Why did he know that? “They’re trying to keep us from thinking straight.”

“No. No. No.” She cried.

“Focus. Heia. Focus.” Evester leveled his breathing. He had taken enough whiteshade to know a bad trip. He also knew how to get her to focus on him and how to gravitate her towards reality. He was not sure how much time he had, but he needed to do it.

“I’m going to tell you a story.” Evester hoped he’d be able to keep his clarity, be able to keep the code going. He hoped, that Heia would be able to understand him and listen. Zeydar would save them.

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