Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Page 641

Mariana’s brow lowered. “And what is it that you want to do?”

“Only to survive and continue protecting people,” said Salazar.

By working with Ex-Abolish,’ said Shenado.

“Well, I didn’t say it was ideal.”

Mariana glowered. The more she thought about it, the less she was surprised by Salazar’s decision. There was a reason this person was Mariana’s previous commanding officer. When she married Zeff, the couple had been confronted with a choice, because a Vanguardian family was not allowed to have split allegiances. It was either Zeff’s commanding officer or Mariana’s. And it was not a difficult decision for her. Rather, it was one of the things that had motivated her to finally tie the knot with Zeff.

The memory of that old mission was abruptly vivid in Mariana’s mind, a mission that had shaped over a decade of conflict to follow.

The president of Vaeland had only just won his election by a small margin, and his first act was to outlaw the practice of slavery. Noble, perhaps, but foolish, because he did not have the strength to support it.

And so the Vanguard came to his aid. Salazar was the first to arrive in the capital with thirty servants under her command, Mariana among them. The goal was only to hold out until their reinforcements could break through the Abolish-controlled southern isles and link up with them.

From all reports, progress was good. Jackson’s men were estimated to arrive in less than ten hours. Salazar’s troops had not even seen any fighting yet.

Then a name reached them.

Gohvis. Bearing down on them from the north.

And that was enough to make Salazar retreat without putting up any resistance. She allowed him to take the capital with ease, allowed Abolish to take root in the heart of the country. To the ruin of all its people.

Mariana wasn’t a fool. She knew they wouldn’t have been able to stop that monster. But they only needed to delay him until Jackson arrived. Yes, it would have been difficult. Yes, many of them would have died. But that was the Vanguard’s purpose. Sacrifice was what it meant to serve.


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    Thanks for reading, everybody. Hope you're all enjoying.

  2. Seriously, what the fuck does ghovis do? Is he like the only mutation servant who figured out his powers before giving himself brain damage? To what extent can he have modified himself? Does his left arm turn into a lazer chain gun while the right has a plasma coated katana? Seriously though.

  3. ...the less she was surprised -by- Salazar's decision.

    Oh Sally. Why do I feel like this conversation is going to take a turn for the hideous?

  4. Maybe he's just really, really smelly.

  5. Fixed, thank you.

    ' I dunno why you feel that way. Feelings are like pies. One minute they're there. The next, you smash them to pieces with a sledgehammer so that they can never hurt you again. Either that, or you have them with ice cream. I always mix those two up.

  6. I bet. And dozer is just a really unpleasant heavy sleeper.

  7. I like the idea of Mariana and Salazar eating ice cream and pie while they argue about the state of the Vanguard.

  8. The snoring! Like an avalanche, it is, mixed with an earthquake, and then that terrible, unpredictable pause, until the dreadful finish - a most unpleasant snorgleblorkglurrrk noise. It's not even regular!
    And don't get me started on the weird dreams and the sleepwalking...

  9. Nah. He's a really persistent proselytizer for a bizarre spaceship cult/ multilevel marketing scheme. Claims it cured his halitosis.

  10. But... the indoctrination slide show... it seemed so legitimate! And ever since he told me to stop eating roadkill, my breath has smelled so much better!

  11. Hmmm...wrong action, right reasons. My personal interpretation as well. Trying to hold Vanguard together would be tough, but doable, and necessary. Going rogue plays into Abolish's hands too. She has a responsibility. But it seems her way of dealing with things is to cut losses early and go try to find another way.

  12. Whoa...Salazar retreated without even a fight? Forsaking an entire capital, let alone the country? I can't say I agree with that. How powerful is Gohvis to justify a full retreat when cavalry was already on the way, including one of the Vanguard's top 4?

  13. Well, he was already a large dragonlike thing, humanoid, when Stoker was a kid. I am picturing Godzilla.

  14. Nobody ever said he was large.