There was an emptiness there, a hollowness that could not be erased.
Betrayal....disappointment...self loathing. These emotions rolled through her like the north wind on an icy Cylus night.
Sephira’s jaw clenched and for a moment she winced. There was a dark purple bruise decorating the side of her face. It was one of many that dotted her body after her tireless crusade to find Rey’na these last several trials. The mage had left a trail of bodies in her wake in her fruitless search for her comrade and friend. The thin, slender woman lacked the poise and disciplined aesthetic that she normally worked so hard to maintain. Her hair was disheveled and her eyes were bloodshot.
Sephira sat in the dark within the top floor of the abandoned butchers’ shop that she had chosen for their latest base of operations. With the Mantis on their tails they never stayed anywhere for long.
A little under a break ago she had silenced the draw of ether that fed her scrying portal. Her time was often spent scrying for Rey’na in the hope to catching another clue as to her whereabouts.
To-trial she had indeed seen something that had gleaned new information...something horrible and beyond even her imagining.
Sephira’s breathing came in ragged gasps, and her body shuddering as she pushed her fingers through her tangled knots of hair. For some reason she couldn’t quite get her breath under control.
So this was how it was.
This was how Max finally slid that last and final knife into her back.
It hurt and shook the woman to her very core. Maxine had always been hard to deal with. She had always been a bit of a bitch and they had always nursed a loathing for each other’s choices in life. But that had never changed the fact that in the end they had once been friends. They had once fought side by side; back to back against the bastards of the world who were stupid enough to try and come at them.
In a way the soldier and the convict were two of a kind. They both hid their true selves behind masks.. Emotions were a weakness and they could shed them like a coat on a warm afternoon. Apathy was their armor, it protected them and the people they gave a damn about.
Everything had changed after Cylus and the Elements Cult. Maxine had taken it upon herself to hunt down every male Element she could get her hands on and Sephira had been given orders to bring the woman in for the murders she committed. Perhaps she had rationalized the arrest in her mind. That in apprehending Max she had protected her from further harm at the hands of less forgiving Elements. Or maybe that was just the lie she told herself so she could sleep at night...
Slags Deep was certainly no mercy, she had seen how skeletal and sickly Maxine had become following her incarceration. Maybe it would have been best if she had let another Element do her job. Max would not have come quietly, they would have hunted her like an animal. Maybe she would be dead now, or maybe halfway across the world instead of here in Andaris.
Kura you chose the wrong team. One backstabbing convict, one soldier incapable of keeping her team alive and a woman with too much mercy for her own good.
They shouldn’t be here. There was a chance that the portal stone wouldn’t even save Scalvoris. Sephira and her “team” were here on the basis of a mere hypothesis.
But it didn’t matter, none of it mattered. Not anymore.
The mage slowly came to her feet, her body aching as she came to stand. Her onyx eyes stung with a dampness that she shoved to the very back of her mind. Wyvern’s hilt came to rest in her hand. She squeezed the cool metal surface for a modicum of comfort. The futile gesture did little so the soldier numbly sent ether spilling into her Attunement Spark and drew forth Maxine’s Frequency within her mind.
The Special Assistant drew the hood of her cloak over her head to obscure her obsidian eyes and began channeling Static to cover her etheric signature.
There was a storm outside, the distant booming of thunder rippled across the noble infested city.
Good. - The sound of a storm always helped to cover her use of Rupturing and she had no intention of waiting any longer to find Maxine.
The use of Compass came easily to her and within a few bits the mage had a fairly good idea of where her tratorious teammate was.
Cracks of thunder reverberated through the muddied streets of low-town. The poor mingled here with the criminals and unwanted within the city. Across the street from the Blacksmith Arms stood a cheap flat roofed eatery. Hidden by the darkness following the setting sun stood an almost inhumanly thin figure in a cloak who looked down on the dilapidated entrance to the tavern below.
Sephira could feel Max’s Frequency clearly now. She was close, and was more than likely trying to drink herself under the table, as always seemed to be her custom after the sun went down. Indigo flashes of lightning lanced across the city skyline followed by a tremor of thunder.
Sephira opened her Blink portal in that same moment, the scarlet flare of light happening so quickly that it was mostly consumed by the flare of lightning in the distance. Her Spark fed off her emotions, funneling her fury into her portal in the form of an ear shattering boom that caused the walls of the tavern to tremble slightly. Hopefully to the untrained ear it would only would like a particularly loud batch of thunder. To to someone familiar with Sephira, it may as well have been announcing her arrival like the chiming of a doorbell.
The Special Assistant emerged out of the dark within the umbral haze of the adjacent alleyway before slipping through the door of the Blacksmith Arms. She was cold, damp and and in no mood to piss around with the convict seated at the back of the building.
She wanted answers, if Max didn’t give them freely then the Sephira had no idea how far she would go or if she would have the strength to stop herself from doing something unforgivable.
Her footsteps fell heavily as she strode toward Max with a desperate and merciless look in her night black eyes.
“You bitch...” The Element snarled, while rounding on the booth at the rear of the room.
“Did you think I was blind?” Her red bloodshot eyes narrowed as she came within a few steps of the traitor.
“Where the fuck is she Max?!” Wyvern was in hand and half drawn; not so different than when the resident of Slag’s Deep had first appeared on Kura’s doorstep.