Meanwhile, back at the ranch– Er, Divinity’s Reach. Which honestly, was more like a circus than a ranch. At least a ranch has some sort of order and structure, and nothing lost in the disorienting display of politics masquerading as order and structure.

Roderik Prendergast had been sent on order, along with an entourage of at least, but not limited to, Diran Kensei and Marek Bloodforged, in an attempt to contain the discord sown by the Hands in the remnants of the Separatist radicals. It was decided that having a charr on hand was a good idea due to the nature of discussions, and the old, former Centurion had as much of a way with words as he did with his fists, and defnitely a better way with them than the young, brash, Sub-Commander himself.

Both abilities were put on perfect display as Marek eventually came to blows with a Minister of the verbal and physical kind. In his defense, the Minister started it, and the Gladium damn well finished it. To which Diran also exhibited the role in which he was advised to attend: to act as the actual damage control and their get-out-of-jail-free card, due to his connections with the Seraph. Roderik did have to admit, it made this boring endeavor far more exciting.

It’s in the wee hours of the morning that he’s reminiscing over the debacle, and the hilarity that ensued, perched atop the massive mobile astrolabe in the center of the Palace Gardens.

Divinity’s Reach was where he lived and grew up, but it never really became ‘home’. Yet somehow, he always found himself back here. The alley ways, rooftops, and even this constantly twirling mechanism always felt more comfortable than a plush bed in any sort of guest room, royal or otherwise. And so, though he should be sleeping, it was here Roderik came to clear his mind.

Troubling it was, that he hadn’t heard much in the way of an update from the rest of the Vanguard. Riathan had last assured him that things were under control. Which was a funny way of saying “stay here where it boring, dealing with people of the ilk you can’t stand, while I go out here and do all the cool stuff.” This was a special kind of punishment. A special kind of hell. And he hated every minute of it. (Except the minute Marek flipped the table. That was an exception.) Riathan despised him, didn’t he? Why else would he put him in this exact situation?

But it’s not as though anyone would have taken him seriously even if he was around. Roderik sucks his teeth at the thought, and flicks a stray pebble into the encroaching dawn.

His mind continues to wander, on the verge of spinning it’s own conspiracies and over thinking, and sowing his own seeds of doubt, on until the sun begins to peek over the horizon. The weight of his head falling forward was the only indication he’d managed to doze off, a realization that came only as he snapped awake, and gave his noggin a good smack! against the metal support beam on which he was leaning. With a grumble, and gentle massage to the now certainly bruised area, Roderik decided it was probably time to return to his room.

He rises to begin his descent, only to stop short, and his breath to catch in his lungs. Lurking in the shadows of the garden below was his very reflection; grey, lifeless, and eyes like burning coals. It lingers for a moment, before vanishing just as seamless as it had appeared.

Roderik finally exhales, suddenly remembering how to function once more.

“Dude, what the fuck…”

Author Roderik
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