Chapter Twenty-Six – Part One
Immediately it is revealed that the man who has kidnapped Dragon is Moss. But honestly, what on earth is he doing here? Looking for revenge it seems, but really all I want to do is smack him out. What a utterly disgusting pig, almost worse than Malik, his views on women (his sister and mother) are utterly barbaric. “They are no more than beasts to a man”, bravo Isobelle Carmody you have certainly riled me and made me get angry. Analivia handles her brother quite well, but you can tell she is scared. He is here to take Analivia back, because apparently his father said ‘he could have her’, which makes no sense. Anyway Radost has died, tripped down a gorge and broke his neck, something Moss finds humorous. This situation however isn’t, he has already gone to their old home, but luckily Bergold was up at Obernewtyn, it was their servants who suffered though. Sadly, when he was heading to Obernewtyn, he found Dragon on the road, and he remembered her red hair from the time they were in Sutrium. He used Dragon to get past ‘mutants and beast lovers’, but I don’t know if he just used her as a hostage, or made her use her powers.
Moss doesn’t reveal how he knew where Analivia was, which makes it very strange. And I am very suspicious. Analivia tries to get him to release Dragon, since it is her that he wants, but at the same time she is readying her knife. But Moss isn’t stupid, and wants her to give up her knife before she moves near him, in fact he makes her remove all her clothes to ensure she has no weapon. Disgustingly he wants to see his sister naked, he really is vile. He even goes to suggest that Analivia wants to have sex with him, and would be jealous of Dragon, (who he wouldn’t have sex with because THAT would be ‘vile’, yeah Moss you’ve got your priorities straight). Elspeth tries to calm him down, but he isn’t going to relent, he now wants Elspeth too, since he knows that she is the ‘doxy’ to Rushton, and knows that Obernewtyn will do anything to protect her. For some reason he seems to believe that Elspeth would willingly use her powers on her friends, rather than die herself, I think he underestimates her.
As for why they can’t attack him, he is wearing a demon band, but that hasn’t stopped Elspeth before. However, it might be that the taint sickness from wearing the demon band makes even using her killing power impossible. But it gets even worse, as he know wants Elspeth to kill Swallow, or Dragon dies. Luckily we don’t have to do any of that, Analivia distracts him for a moment, and Gavyn’s owl attacks him, which gives the group the vital moment to attack him. But before Swallow, Darga or Elspeth could reach him, Analivia’s knife hit him clean and fast, and he died. Good riddance!
Thankfully Dragon was not yet dead, but her wound in her neck from Moss’ knife was serious. Ahmedri arrived to tend Dragon, who is a skilled healer as all Sadorian fighters are, since if they are able to take a life, they must be able to save one. Elspeth is quite shaken up by the experience, and isn’t much help to anyone. Analivia is obviously shaken up by it all, and reveals that Moss’ vile treatment of her started when she was a child, which is just so disgusting, and she had no way to stop him. Her mother tried to help her, but she too was powerless, being the wife of Radost, she could hardly protect herself against his abusive ways. Even after all he has done, and what he was about to do, Analivia is still conflicted in her emotions, she just killed her brother.
Dragon was still unconscious for the rest of the night, and the others arrived in a hurry. Rasial explains that Gavyn sent ‘Fey’ the owlet, and watched them go, in their spirit-form and bade her attack. Hopefully Rasial and Gavyn can somehow help Dragon, just as they did with Miky. The group try to destress around a campfire, with some stew. The wolves had come to get them, but Rasial had told them what happened, so they told them to follow their trail when they were ready. They will be walking across tainted ground soon, but it will be the safest path.
Dameon helps Analivia get to sleep, and urges Elspeth to do the same, her worrying won’t help anyone. She wonders how Dragon will be when she wakes, and what she remembers. But the idea that something more is going on, with Moss by chance meeting Dragon and following them to the high mountains, is tempting. It is actually frightening to think that Atthis used Moss to bring Dragon to Elspeth, even if she knew what was going to happen, was it the right thing to do? The group decide to go to sleep, but Elspeth and Dameon stay awake for the first watch. Swallow and Ahmedri will take the next one, and will put Moss’ body in a cairn, even a monster doesn’t have to be left for scavengers.
Dameon can sense that Gavyn and Rasial are doing something, so hopefully that is healing Dragon’s spirit, because we know that she probably needs it. Dameon reassures Elspeth that Dragon will remember sooner or later about her mother, Elspeth just needs to give it time. Elspeth asks Dameon about Rushton and whether something happened between them, but all he says is that he has taken off to be with Elspeth, when it is Rushton who loves her, and wanted to be with her. Plus, he envies him, Rushton is a born leader, something Dameon doesn’t think he is. But there must be more to it than that, and maybe the fact that some people believe he is in love with Elspeth (I haven’t really got that feeling myself, only hints of it in light of other people’s theory) might have something to do with it.
Elspeth spends the time just thinking, there was so much to think about, and so much new information since they have left. She just hopes Dragon wakes without her previous hatred of her, maybe this is why Dameon is with them. Elspeth’s shift is over, and she goes to sleep. I have to leave it here, but we’ll continue tomorrow, and finish off Part Two of The Sending! What cliff hanger will we end on this time?