Thorst Fall stood impassively for the three breaks as testimony was brought forth, in favor of as well as against these people she now knew to be called Maxine and Mercedes. Her face never wavered one way or another as she listened to other survivors from the docks tragedy, from the soldiers that fought here at the riot, from those who'd lost loved ones at the pair's hands, and those who felt that they were simply products of circumstance. There was one who presented testimony against them for some crimes committed at the Kennels in Almund, though it was simply witnessing. There were several common themes here, and once the third break finally passed, Thorst let the current speaker finish before stepping forward.
"I have listened to your testimonies, and before I render my verdict, I must say a few words. I recognize that Maxine here, and really, many here on our island, have experienced tragedy at the hands of those that were expected to protect them. It was a massive failure on our part as the Elements, and quite clearly set forth this calamitous chain of events. There is nothing we can do to bring those lost back, to undo the pain wrought. All we can do is move forward, and attempt to make things better, so as to not allow for such a failure to happen again."
Turning to look at Councilors Kura, Faith, and Special Assistant Blackwood, "I have seen this ailment you've spoken of. People are not meant to experience such carnage and it breaks them in ways that are unique to them. Any veteran of war has seen it, whether in themselves, or in their friends and loved ones. I would task that following this, the Council work with the Order to develop a system for identifying and treating this ailment, both in the public, as well as those within our military. It turns already dangerous individuals into unpredictable beings of chaos and destruction."
Turning to speak to the crowd as a whole now, "But this ailment does not exonerate Maxine of her crimes. Many of your were affected this day, others were there with Maxine, and while it is not a matter of severity of their personal experiences, it is a matter of self responsibility. Among those held captive by the cult, several were traumatized, and yet one took it upon herself to bring further trauma to others. Special Assistant Blackwood has performed her duties in an exemplary manner since the tragedy, as has Councilor Kura, as have others. These individuals have shown a measure of control within themselves that was not seen today by Maxine, by those others that turned to violence in this riot."
"And while Maxine most certainly needs help, our limited resources must be first spent on those that help others and themselves, before those that help no one. This, coupled with how dangerous this woman is, has led me to decide upon her fate. Immediately following this verdict, she will be taken to Slags Deep prison in Egilrun, to serve out a sentence of no less than sixty-eight arcs, for the crimes of multiple counts of murder, of inciting a riot, disturbing the peace, resisting arrest, and hosting a protest in Scalvoris Town without a permit. During her stay there, she will received regular treatment from the member of the Order tasked with treating those in the prison. She is simply too dangerous in her current state to be kept anywhere other than our most secure facility. We cannot continue to put more and more of the public's lives in danger. We cannot continue to fail our people."
"Blackwood, take a contingent, and get this prisoner to a Scal Sohr Khal. They are to depart for Slags Deep immediately."
The other soldiers lowered Maxine, half keeping hands on her, the other half keeping weapons drawn on her, in case she somehow managed to free herself. She was carried over to Sephira Blackwood, set before her standing as the troops awaited her orders, to get on with transporting the prisoner. And Thorst Fall continued.
"This man, Mercedes, or Merces as the Kennels suggest, is an entirely different story. This man did not partake of any of the violence himself. And while his words were inflammatory, whether or not his intention was to start a violent upheaval, or if his words simply carried more weight than he'd intended. He never held a blade, never struck a blow. But actions have consequences, intended or otherwise. For his crimes of inciting a riot, disturbing the peace, resisting arrest, and hosting a protest in Scalvoris Town without a permit, he will be sentenced to one arc in Slag's Deep. For these crimes, he would normally be kept in one of our lesser facilities, but as it was discovered that he is a Defiance Mage, he must be held in our most secure facility in order to prevent escape. Soldiers, please begin the transport process for this man."
And as such, the verdicts were given. Thorst turned, and approached the Councilors, giving no visible sign of emotion, though weariness was obvious. "Councilor Faith, your suggestion for the potion of truth, as well as Councilor Kura's suggestion for the anti-magic device, are ones we should definitely pursue. But as it stands in this case, we simply do not have enough stores of the potion to be using on those who acted alone in their crimes, nor do we like to publicize our ownership and use of them, for criminals that believe it to be used on them, are much less inclined to surrender to capture. It makes them more dangerous. We must save our limited stores for when we capture those behind the tragedy at the docks, and other such larger plots. We have no system in place for the continuous, or even reliable production of such elixirs. If we can increase production of truth serums, or if Professor Augustin can develop such a technology, our practices may change. But right now, we simply cannot take the risk. I apologize if this seems harsh, but it is what must be done for the good of our people. Good day Councilors. Professor."
And Thorst went to speak with her assistant deputies, as soldiers lowered Mercedes' unconscious body, and took him away for transport. And with the trial over, the crowd began to disperse, save those staying behind to help with the clean up, mostly soldiers, members of the Order, and a handful of others. Another trial coming to a close, another bathed in blood. And a man sitting in the shadows turned, disappearing down an alley, humming a light song from his youth, smiled. How predictable these people were to the man with the easily forgotten face.