Memories of War

The Narrow Gate Hall, Andale

-#-#-

Sehsis walks into the inn, he scans the crowd, looking for Nasrin and, on spotting her, walks over.

Deonyc glances at sehsis walking over and sighs, he thinks it best to stand up and watch from the side now.

A son of adam with curly hair sees the other Calormene enter, “You got to be– This is taking the absolute piss” He does shout those words and without further ado stands, grabs Lecie and storms out the room.

Sehsis watches in confusion as the man leaves in a rage, “What just happened…?”

Deonyc nods greeting, and shrugs, “Nasrin may or may not have mentioned, slavery, the battle, and interacted with the daughter of Eston in a short amount of time.”

Deonyc he sits back down

Sehsis says weakly, “I…See”

Nasrin gives a little wave for Sehsis. “I believe it was him who brought up slavery and battle, after calling me a backstabbing cad. And is it wrong to be polite to her…?”

You say, “In that case he was in the wrong.”

Nasrin says, “Thank you.”

Sehsis nods and casts a frown towards Deonyc.

Deonyc frowns at nasrin, “You called it a “little scuffle” and you joked  about enslaving most of us.” he shrugs, “You know thats enough to put most on the fence.”

Sehsis says in stiff tones, “The…Erstwhile and present topic is not one I wish to be part of. I’ll be leaving, Nasrin if you wish to stay you may.” and with that he turns on his heels and leaves.


Later that day


Room 1, Andale

-#-#-

Sehsis is sat by the window, he is writing something in a notebook.

Nasrin enters into the room, minus one bangle. “And that is the last delivery of the day done, uncle,” she says as she closes the door behind her.

Sehsis looks up from his writing and nods, “Excellent, I trust it went without issue?”

Nasrin asks, “Has there ever been issue when I am involved?”

You say, “Thus far, no, but you never know”

Nasrin gasps. “What are you trying to say about me?”

Sehsis closes the book, “Nothing about you, but, well, what happened earlier had me slightly concerned”

Nasrin asks, “What about it?”

Sehsis looks a little uncomfortable, “Deonyc mostly, I wondered if he had said or done anything to ah.. Exacerbate the issue”

Nasrin rolls her eyes. “Oh, you mean aside from backing me up when I said I wasn’t a backstabber? I can’t says o.”

Sehsis watches her for a moment, then said slowly, “That was sarcasm, or are you actually saying that he stood up for you?”

Nasrin says, “He did not.”

Sehsis nods, his thoughts confirmed, “I have to warn you about him, he is the kind of person who will act your friend right up until the point where being so is no longer expedient to be so and will turn on you then… You saw a small glimpse of that, keep it in mind for further interactions with him”

Nasrin folds her arms. “Is this why you don’t like him? What did he do to you?”

Sehsis hesitates and when he speaks his voice is slow and careful, “Deonyc mentioned that the man earlier was angry because the battle was mentioned? I do not remember if I or anyone else mentioned to you that I was also there on that day”

Nasrin frowns softly. “You have never mentioned this,” she says. “What happened? What was it like?”

Sehsis continues in that same slow tone, “I was here with Philip then, I’d arranged for him to run a small stall at the market to see how he did, we were in the town when the order came to evacuate to the castle, we were not told why save that it was some emergency, but I went along with them as I had an obligation to keep Philip safe…” His voice trails off momentarily, the memories from two years back still strong as ever.

Nasrin nods, silently, as she listens along to the tale.

Sehsis catches his breath and continues to speak, “Practically the whole town was now gathered in the castle ward, it was then that… Well, the Archen King stepped out to give the news of…” He trails off again, when he resumes speaking his voice is strained, “Of the impeding attack– You must understand Nasrin, this is a small country and though the size of that army may seem small in comparison to the main forces for Archenland…” he winces a little, “Anyway…The king was speaking and…”

Nasrin listens along, with wide eyes.

Sehsis sighs, by the way he keeps trailing off and losing his thread it’s clearly difficult for him to speak about it, “I had planned, on learning what was happening, to turn myself in quietly so as to not cause a fuss… I knew I could not leave at that point of course, the gates had been barred…” He clenches his hand into a fist, more to stop it from shaking if anything, “That is what I had planned, but the moment the King had made his announcement Deonyc whom was also there and had joined the evacuation called out to him, pointing me out in front of that startled crowd and asking what should be done with me…”

Nasrin narrows her eyes. “He gave you away, just like that?”

Sehsis nods, “Yes, up until that point I had considered him a friend and would not have thought…” He shakes his head, “I am lucky that the King here is a level headed and fair man, he told him and the rest to hold their peace and spoke to me after they had all left for the castle itself. He told me that…I would not be forced to take arms against my country and… That provided I gave my word to cause no trouble I would have refuge there too… Trouble was the last thing I wanted…”

Sehsis exhales a breath and pinches the bridge of his nose, “I spent 48 hours of my life in the certain knowledge that I would die at any moment…”

Nasrin nods. “I do not blame you for holding a grudge against Deonyc,” she says. “And he has never shown remorse?”

Sehsis shakes his head, “He apologised, but has shown no remorse, words are cheap. Actions are what matters and in this case…”

Nasrin asks, “He’s never shown remorse afterwards?”

Sehsis shakes his head, “If he has, he has such a way of showing it that it is unrecognisable as such” he picks up the notebook and turns it around in his hands, “I found it difficult to speak to him for the longest time, but I have decided to be the better person. I will be polite and civil in his presence, but I will never trust him nor call him my friend”

Sehsis adds on thoughtfully, “Nor will I forgive him”

Nasrin nods in agreement. “I do not blame you one moment for that, for I would be the very same.” She pauses for a moment. “The way he wouldn’t even stand up for me, even if I did make a joke crude in nature, is telling… I’ll keep this in mind.”

Sehsis nods, he seems to relax for the first time since beginning his story, “Good. Good I’m glad… I don’t like speaking about this. It’s only the second time I told anyone what happened” he shakes his head with another sigh, “Well no matter, I suppose you know now. Discretion is advised when this topic comes up, it’s highly emotive”

Nasrin says, “I’m glad you finally decided to tell me. I always knew something had happened between you two, but I wasn’t sure what. Now I know.”

You say, “Yes. Now you know.”

Nasrin offers a small smile. “I think I’ll be retiring for the night. Thank you again.”

You say, “Goodnight, farewell”

Nasrin walks out into the hallway.

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