Shamila felt stifled the moment Ashgnar had started speaking to her, and just stared at where the enigmatic Inquisitor had disappeared.
“An intriguing person, hmm?” Vhiran remarked. “It is said no one but the Emperor himself has seen Raeynil Ashgnar’s face. All background, age, species, even sex… All but the Inquistor’s title are unknown.”
She could only hear him vaguely. Inside she felt like she was crumbling. The unwavering trust she had placed in the people that had raised her, had been her family for as long she could remember, everything she was taught and had built on, all she had believed as truth for her entire life, short though it had been… Slowly but surely all of it was crumbling down. Everything… Was everything a lie? It, it can’t be! But, but it is, right? What’s going on? Why is this all happening? What should I, what should I do? Her eyes shut tightly, she fell to her knees. “W-what sh-should I, do?” she sobbed. “WHAT SHOULD I DO?!” First her lips, then her arms and within moments her body was trembling wildly. Not able or even trying to react, she fell down. The fall seemed so long, just like at Kessel, and for a moment she relived that horrible moment again: Vhiran sitting motionless in his seat, the wind pulling her through the ship’s shattered windows, and finally the fall, the final fall down to the planet surface. It’s over… Just before hitting the ground she could feel a pair of arms under her. She lied still. Her vision started to turn blurry, her mind dazed and blank.
“Shamila.” She heard the worried voice only vaguely. “Shamila, are you alright?”
Still trembling Shamila slowly opened her eyes to see Vhiran bent over her, holding her in his arms. She cried. “I’m, sorry, Master. It’s, it’s just…”
“Don’t worry, Shamila.” Vhiran replied calmly and lifted her up. “I should be the one to be sorry. It’s much to take at once, perhaps too much. You want to rest some more?”
Slowly the girl nodded. “Y-yes,” she whispered. While her Master carried her through the halls, supporting her small body with one arm and gently stroking through her hair, she wrapped her arms around his neck and lied her head on his shoulder. “I’m, sorry.”
‘I know you will be strong one day. You must protect the innocent.’ The words Nillanthir had said to her shortly before their parting on Zaloriis suddenly rang through her head. Recalling his words and image to mind, she started to calm down again. Her inner turmoil, all the thoughts of worry, fear, and guilt that had raged through her head some moments ago, all ebbed away. Yes, I’ll become strong, Nill. With her eyes still closed and her head on Vhiran’s shoulder, she smiled. And I’ll protect the innocent, I promise.
‘If we are to meet again, then may it be the day we will never part again.’
Yes. A single tear flowed down her cheek, a tear of happiness. May it be. With a soft sigh she let a peaceful slumber fall over her.