A disjointed soul

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A disjointed soul

Postby SteveC » Mon Jul 04, 2016 12:57 pm

Hastreme stood in the observation doom of the Songs of Terra as he watched the Arvus Lighter pull away and head towards Arkangel. The last of Hypatia's belongings were aboard the small shuttle and with its departure the last link between Hastreme and the Sororitas were gone. He had been expecting her departure ever since Corvinus, Hark and all the others had left. The attempts to fill those positions with temporary contractors had not been the same and it was clear that Hypatia could not remain alongside him after what had happened on Lhosir. It was better that she had chosen to leave him, that they all had. Still he looked down at the medical dressings that covered his skinless arms. His newly promoted personal physician had assured him that the skin grafts were taking perfectly well but part of Hastreme still wished it was Hypatia that was overseeing his physical recovery. Whilst these self inflicted wounds would soon heal and his arms be just as they were before Lhosir he would keep the memories of that night clear forever. The now preserved strips of his own flesh covered in the crude attempts at warding rituals inked onto them in his own blood would be kept as a reminder of that moment of weakness. His bandaged fingers retrieved the chess piece from the pouch at his belt and once more he rolled it between them as he concentrated on the attempt to interrupt its psychic link with the rest of the board.

His concentration was broken once more by the faint sounds of screaming that had persisted on the edges of his psychic awareness every moment since the five of them had decided to subject his soul to the abomination of sorcery. They had torn his soul apart and he had felt it almost be destroyed by their attempt to help him. The reassuring and empowering bond he had felt for the last year had been ripped away by a level of pain and terror he could barely describe and which persisted now in the very core of his soul. After all he and the Gyrinx were still bonded and the pain they had put the animal through and that it still suffered echoed through every nerve ending of Hastreme's body. It was only stubbornness that was keeping him on his feet. Stubbornness and the anger he felt at the betrayal of those that had done this to him, without his knowledge or his consent or any seeming of regard for the damage and danger they had placed his and their own souls in. The worst past of course that it had all been unnecessary, the worst of the effects caused by the corruption of closing the warp breach the night before had passed and the remaining trauma would have passed with normal treatment. Hastreme had not been needed for the final action on Lhosir, his presence yet again had no effect on the outcome. Surprisingly Dexter had been the only one to even comment on his return and what had happened the night before. No their interference had made the cure for his trauma much more dangerous now. They had invited the immaterium into the safety of Hastreme's vessel and into his very soul, they had opened a door without knowing what might slip through that opening. Hastreme himself had no idea what might now be waiting in that part of his tortured soul currently held in the Gyrinx, if it was only that part of his soul that waited for him to undo what they had done. It could not be left as it was, he needed to be whole again, he needed the torture that part of him was suffering to end so that he could repair the damage done to his very essence. Only now he would have to do that alone because none of those that had caused this to happen remained with him now. That was the true betrayal, they had done this thing, put him through this torture and danger and left him.

Of course with them all having abandoned him it meant that he no obligations now. No one else's agendas to consider. He still had a duty by his Warrant yes but just that now. That and the great unknowns that lay out there in the Void were all he needed to concern himself with now. His Dynasty's holdings in Imperial space were well managed enough, his marriage had achieved its purpose and his daughter would be taught all she the skills she would need by the best experts available. There was no need to return to that side of the Line then. For now he could be free to just be the explorer he had always desired to be. But first he needed to repair his soul and hope that did not result in his becoming possessed or worse. Such a thing then was best done far away from anyone else to reduce the dangers involved to others. He looked down at the chess piece in his hand that would need dealing with too, one way or another. But first he had to determine what damage they had done to his soul and make sure the Songs of Terra was fully stocked for a very long voyage into that lonely darkness.

He thought back to the test of faith he had undertaking on Lhosir. The demon had tried to undermine his faith in himself, his resolute belief that he was the only person he could rely on. That innate truth seemed even clearer now. But it had also claimed that all the others were using him and it had been right about that too.

"You're only here for the Loot anyway. We didn't want you to miss it" had been Hypatia's words to him when he had asked hr why they had performed the sorcery they had carried out on his soul. That was all any of them thought of him evidently, even after everything else he had done for them, done with them, that was all they saw when they looked at him. In that case it was for the best they had all left him. If they all held him in such low regard then why should he continue to help them. They treated him as an outsider, then the true outsider he would become.
Lord Captain Avonis Gul Holtz-Hastreme
Quis est iste qui venit


Steve Clapton
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