- Athyfer emerges from his ship at last, attempting to introduce himself to the Bull.
- As a reminder, the last time they met was actually when Raphares was still around, and he left a hundred-mile long scar of scorched land and dead men.
- But Athyfer can play the crowd, and attempts to flatter Yurgen. Maybe it would work.
- But Unari speaks up, and clarifies things.
- Raphares is, for all intents and purposes, dead. Except physically. And Yurgen intends to fix that.
- Athyfer doesn’t like this plan, and attempts to talk his way out of it.
- Dusk points out the inherent problems of killing Athyfer now, and tries to reason with the Bull.
- Spear, for his part, also attempts reason after a sort, and points out that the Falcon was quite a bit of help earlier.
- Damn, the Bull is stubborn. But with Athyfer’s assurance that he will return bearing people from Hatiq who can assist in the reconstruction effort, then his head is spared, for now.
Yurgen, for his part, seems only partly won over. But partly is enough. “Go, then. Return with men, and know this: if I see you within my borders uninvited after this? No more deals. I will have my sword in my hand, and you will have your tongue in yours.”
And this Northern pragmatism and forthrightness is why Sparrow has begun liking Yurgen. She smiles and bows her head respectfully.
“The best I could hope for.” Acknowledges the Eclipse. “Then I imagine you’d prefer we leave—”
“Now.” Says Yurgen. “Not ‘sooner rather than later’” he makes a mocking flourish with his hands. “Now. You. In your boat and fly.”
- Onward, then, to Hatiq. And when Sparrow arrives, Athyfer immediately launches into salesman mode, turning on the charm and offering the people of the City that Fell a trip back home, to the Maker.
- Dusk is gonna have none of that shit. He takes Athyfer just about by physical force to the center of the city, and informs him that they will talk this over with Hatiq, and they will abide by his decisions.
- Athyfer doesn’t seem particularly fazed, but agrees, and calls for him the moment they step onto the tripartite floors.
- Meanwhile, Sparrow and Unari go to the Vats complex, and run into a problem.
They look, and shake their heads. “We can’t. Her Essence isn’t developed enough for a purely mechanical frame, and assuming we weren’t a little afraid of what would happen, we still don’t have enough starmetal to construct that kind of body. We would need enough flesh-clay to build a new body, and…we don’t have that, either. We haven’t needed to, and we don’t have access to the Maker to craft more.”
- Their local friendly Jade caste, however, has tagged along. And he has a solution, one which has been percolating in his head for a while:
He turns to the technicians on staff—all two of them, and kneels.
“I am Hundred-Hand Spear, Executive, Chosen of Autochthon and Champion of the people of Hatiq. I am one-hundred and thirty years from my rebirth in this city. With the loss of Seer of Bright Vistas and of Bright Alarum Carillon, I beseech that I be taken to the vats, and upraised to the status of Colossus.”
He looks up to Sparrow for a moment, and then back down to the ground, kneeling even deeper. “I ask that the clay of this body be taken to reform that of the recovered Whisper, Rose of Ineffable Wisdom.”