Ojhi and the Jungle of Daevas- Part 2
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Note- Following story contains certain topics like slavery and violence.

On the fifth thousand seven hundred eighty-second year since the sacred covenant Maharaja made with the Scarlet, two hundred years after Shinak became the inseparable part of our empire, Tenhau Mrihan was born to the noble house of Mirhan, Potnya of all who dwelled at Kastuni, somewhere in southern Shinak. He was the result of the young and irresponsible love of Jahani Mirhan, the heiress and a Shinaki slave. Despite this, the Mirhan welcomed the young boy as one of their own, a Daeva.

Tenhau grew up into a strong warrior, a great spear thrower, and a good scholar. He trained with the best warriors of the Daevon, and by the age of fifteen, he had the strength of an elephant. He composed several songs on the glories of the empire, and most of all, he was adored by all: Daeva, slaves, and free Nalkan, his father’s people. He pacified many slave revolts in the south of Shinak and inspired free men to leave their barbaric ways and join the Daevon.

However, in the North, rebellion broke out under a person called Iun, a liberator who preached about a false god, Yaldo. He massacred several Daevas and created a separate Nalkan state. Tenhau, at the age of twenty-three, took a legion and marched to the North to crush the revolt. He, however, first chose the way of talking, trying to convince Iun to give up his destructive ways, but to no avail. And thus the war began.

Tenhau, like a mighty warrior, massacred several Nalkan warriors, killed their flesh beasts using the magic blessed to him by the Scarlet, and defeated Iun and his false god. Tenhau beheaded Iun and brought his head back for all to see. Rajmata Urshamitra, pleased with him, blessed him, and waved the taxes from his family.

Tenhau was supposed to inherit the largest share of his family’s wealth due to his achievements, but just after his victory, Jahani married Ornamu, the third born of the Ursh clan of Meghari. Ornamu was jealous of Tenhau, for he was the next head of the Mirhan family and not Ornamu’s future offspring, and he himself was considered a failure back in his home, his only virtue being his beauty, which fetched the Ursh clan a handsome amount of fortune as groom money. He could not tolerate that his stepson held more prestige than him—a son of a slave holding more power than a full-blooded Daeva.

Thus the man plotted Tenhau’s demise, one day bringing him to the distant forests for a hunt with a few Nalkans who had once followed Iun. There, they stabbed Tenhau while he was looking into a rabbit’s burrow. They stabbed him again and again until his body turned cold. Ornamu, however a trickster he was, blamed it on the Nalkan and convinced the ignorant masses of his innocence. The wrath of Daevon fell on Nalkans; the free were enslaved, and the enslaved were worked to death.

A year passed and Tenhau’s body rotted in the forest, being a feast for carrion feeders, until one day the False God, Yaldo’s attention fell on him.

"Thou were the one whom killed mine prophet and cause mine people to suffer e'en moe. Thou stole mine people's chance to be free, now thou shall deliver 'em to freedom"

Thus said Yaldo, and he resurrected Tenhau, giving him a new body—an immortal body—made from decaying flesh of his own. Tenhau looked at the False god in shock; the carrion god was a soul-sucking abomination.

"Hie, and say to thy people to let mine people hie 'i freedom, so that they may live their lives, 'i happiness like i intended 'em to be." He gave Tenhau a staff made from corrupted flesh.

Tenhau left dumbstruck, walking back to his hometown. There he saw the Nalkans, his people, wasting away in slavery. He went to his home, only to find Ornamu as the new Potnya. Tenhau’s mother died in grief after her son’s death, and Ornamu, through deceit, took over the family and became the new Potnya.

Tenhau stood before him, finding disgust everywhere. His body was rotten, his carrion filled with dried blood and pus, but he was still as strong as he was when he was alive. Tenhau asked Potnya to show mercy on the Nalkans, but Potnya refused, giving reason for Tenhau's death. Tenhau told everyone next that he was alive, only for everyone to laugh at him.

"The dead cannot rise back." The Potnya removed him from his house. Tenhau went to the house of his comrades to help him, but only found disappointment; they refused to help him and even said that Nalkans had no worth except that of a slave.

Tenhau went back to Yaldo and told him everything.

"The Daevas are an arrogant race; I shall rain perpetual winks on 'em. Hie and gather all Nalkans. I granted thou an immortal corporal agent, and part of mine power, hie and empower the Nalkans and drive the daevas out."

Empowered by Yaldo himself, Tenhau next went to the Nalkan settlements and began preaching about Yaldo and his grievous mistake of not discovering the fact that the Daevas were no well-wishers of Nalkans but mere conquerors who wouldn't stop till every Nalkan was exterminated from their lands. Thus, Tenhau decided to resist them and drive them out.

He took four Nalkans and trained them in Daevic arts, infused with Nalkan carrion magic and empowered them. They, in turn, continued this cycle with others. Eventually, a massive Nalkan army stood up, grander than the previous one. Tenhau led them and massacred every Daeva except for the treacherous Potnya and some of his guards, who fled back to Daevon. Tenhau, on the eve of the day of grand victory, founded the Kalmatkana Empire, to remain for an eternity, and sent a messenger to the Rajmata Sirhanuka, who told her on his behalf:

"I am Iun, Grand Karcist of Kalmatkana. I extend my greetings to your Holiness and petition you to recognise our independence. Together, we can work and build wonders on this Earth. But say no, and Yaldo’s wrath will strike your empire down."

And thus the Deavite-Sarcik war began.

Excerpt from Book 4, the Rhine Manuscript, chapter seventeen, The Arch traitor.

By the morning, we had reached the scarlet city of Mamjul. Unlike most Daevic settlements, which were built on the land, Mamjul was based upon large platforms, kilometres wide. The platform only allowed the mountains to pass through it, covering everything down the valley. A river would flow from the north on aqueducts made from red resin, like the rest of Mamjul was, and would flow through the canals built across the city, with one leading it down the city’s surface while the rest would join in the south, a single great canal ending at the limit of the platform where water would fall down like a giant waterfall, a marvellous sight.

There were five peaks protruding out, holding the houses of the nobility. The highest peak was at the centre, housing the Scarlet Palace, where the Rajmata lived, and the Scarlet’s Avatar would dream. On the platform were the buildings of the commoners, made from the same resin, while below the platform were trees, huge and thick, red like the resin, supporting the entire city.

Nir And I was silently watching this spectacle from a peak near the city.

"Here we are, in the great city of Mamjul. It looks better here than from the satellite." I remarked. Nir engaged the flight and raced towards the city. I, too, did the same. After a few minutes, we landed in the city. The ground was made from resin, but for some reason still unknown to us, it was able to support plant life. The roads were clean, with fruit-bearing trees planted on either side. The houses were less like living trees and more like proper structures made from resin bricks, joined together by a different kind of resin. They were also larger, at least four stories high, with the highest at eleven floors. People wore red attire and red jewellery. Maybe this was a command from the rulers of the city. Slaves, however, were no different than any other part of the empire, except they were branded on their right hand with Daevic scripts.

We walked on the streets, remaining invisible to others. The city had designated a place for stores to set up, and hawking was banned, enforced by the city’s police. On the street only, there were three officers wearing tunics with a leather shield strapped to them. The three of them wore a helmet made from an animal skull and leather; this was the standard uniform of the entire police force, and they carried a large femur bone fashioned into a mace. We reached a turn when the people ahead of us stopped.

Several men, wearing armour and holding shields and spears, marched on the road, singing a song in unison while some played flutes made from bones. Of whom I don't dare to think. The procession continued with the Daevites cheering for their warriors while the slaves remained silent.
"This is a military parade." Nir asked me through comms.

"Yes, and quite unique. You may never get to see it again this close." I said to Nir as suddenly a new wave of soldiers marched, holding pikes with heads on them. "Ah shit." I whispered to myself.


"Ba Daeva Hezu Sarka!" One of the civilians chanted before everyone else started chanting. The heads were lowered towards the public by the soldier while they still marched. The Daevites begin to spit on their heads. A roar from the elephant stopped the commotion.

The beast with four tusks came next; several people, naked, maimed, and chained to its neck, walked while on top was a mount made from vines bearing flowers. A girl, maybe eighteen years old, wore colourful clothes, like a priestess sitting on a throne on the mount. On her lap was the head of a man. People began to cheer again, chanting the phrase again.

"This is civilization." Nir said in a mocking tone. "Let’s go; I am done." He flew out towards the palace.

The palace was built on top of the peak at the centre of the city. To give a comparison, you may think of the main temple of the Aztec Empire. The temple here is the peak, and the palace was above it. A series of steps was built from the ground to the top, and special slaves were available to carry everyone on palkis, though some nobles would have their own slaves carry them on their backs. A basket would be strapped to their backs, and the Nobel would sit inside. Maybe they had trust issues with the public service. We, however, made it through our flight suit.

I landed as Nir was already walking inside the crimson palace. I followed him. The palace’s interior was ornate with calligraphy, murals, and jewels planted on the walls. The halls were filled with guards wearing ornate leather armour and carrying spears and clubs. The courtiers were walking, and we decided to follow them. In the next fifteen minutes, we walked through halls with ceilings filled with murals depicting Daevic history, their god, Scarlet, and finally all the glories they had achieved till now. We entered the hall, which was even larger and more magnificent.

The court was built with the same red resin but was decorated with the skins of various animals. On one end of the hall was the throne of Rajmata, while on the other side was an open gate, allowing people to enter. Some strange birds were sitting on the ceiling. We both went to Rajmata’s throne and stood near it while the courtiers filled the hall. Beside the Rajmata’s throne, there were six more on either side, lower than her throne. The wall behind Rajmata’s throne was decorated with a lion's skin, two human skulls on either side, and finally a giant rifle fixed at the top.

"Rifles?" Nir was puzzled, but I was not. They were Ladronian rifles—maybe the ones Saranites stole millenia ago when they ransacked the city. Emotions overflowed me for a second: grief. Her face flashed in front of my eyes.

Everyone stood up while the soldiers raised their spears and hit them hard against the floor. Rajmata entered the hall with five more women. Everyone lowered their heads. The five ladies passed us and took their seats. They were wearing the same clothes that the girl with the elephant from before was wearing. Rajmata had a shawl made from tiger skin to distinguish herself from others.

"So are they rulers?" Nir asked me.

"Yes, they are sitting at the centre of the hall. I think the middle one holds the most power." I explained as someone else entered the court.

The young girl entered the hall, excited. Everyone cheered as she rushed to the Rajmata, who welcomed her with a warm embrace. Rajmata then stepped forward as other women stood up and announced that the young girl, who was a bride of the Scarlet King, had won an important battle against the Nalkans, whom they called Sarka, rebels. She slew one of the companions of the arch-enemy, Iun, and gave a massive blow to the Nalkans. Everyone cheered again, chanting her name, Vam Maniz.

Two vines sprouted out from the ceiling, one holding a roll of paper. They lowered and then spread the roll open, showing the map of the empire with a territory marked in red, showing the Nalkans.

A third vine came down, holding a pen, followed by two more holding ink pots. The vine started changing the map, showing a reduction in Nalkan territory and an expansion up in the north. Rajmata explained that the Nalkans were fleeing up north, somewhere they called Adytum, and assured their demise. The Nalkan rebellion at that time was still very new, yet it managed to spark hope in the slave caste for their incoming salvation. This news would surely have broken their morale.

Just after the announcement, a man entered, wearing ceremonial clothes, with a boy walking with him. The boy was only wearing a cloth around his waist; his face was sad, but nothing else. He was branded, along with a heavy necklace around his neck bearing symbols. His hand was tied up.

Rajmata announced a special sacrifice for Maniz’s prosperity as Nir turned back and stomped out, gaining the attention of some bystanders, including one of the bridesmaids. Luckily for them, it was akin to a ghost stomping.

I followed him out of the court before grabbing him by the hand.

"Nir, stop roaming around like-"

"Ojhi Mana, I can’t take this anymore." Nir shouted at me. "These are the most horrible people I could have ever encountered. They do horrible things like this like it means nothing."

"Nir, you have to understand that their moral standard is different from ours. We can disagree or even protest against this, but we cannot just paint them evil because of this."

"Ojhi Mana, with all due respect, you are wrong; these people are evil and deserve to be exterminated." Nir said this and walked away. I could not have said anything. It was his first time, and this kind of experience would affect him like it did. I could not relate; after all, my first experience was completely different.

I decided to leave Nir alone for now and started looking at the palace, entering various rooms, including the kitchen, slave quarters, store rooms, and even private rooms, just to get something important. Eventually, after searching the entire palace thoroughly for hours, I found three men walking out of a chamber, one picking up a plank to seal it. I quickly went inside before the door was closed.

The chamber was foggy, and my suit’s sensors registered a large amount of narcotics present in the air. Three priests, fully covered in clothing, were chanting in a low voice, like a lullaby. I made my way through, nearly bumping into a brazier. There were three of them, each in front of a priest. I continued before reaching the centre of the room, and I bumped into something. It was huge. I switched to night vision, despite the smog in the room obstructing my view. There was a tree with a large base; its trunk went up to the ceiling and went out through a hole. There was wet soil beneath my shoes.

‘What is this?’ I thought. The tree was normal at first, but when my eyes went down to its roots, the next thing caught me off guard.

A man was entangled in the roots. Only his head and right arm were out; the rest were inside the tree. Was this the avatar of Scarlet? I took a step back.

I had been around the galaxy before this and even now go around. I saw a lot of bizarre things, but this was one of the most bizarre. The man was sleeping peacefully; it was impossible. No one could even breathe in this state.

I took a deep breath and took out a multi-tool. Oleum’s multi-tool is not your average tool. Made from nanites, it can become anything you need, from a can opener to a pistol. I just took out a diagnostic tool to send data back to Oleum for study. The tool was crafted in seconds—a simple oval body with a needle.

I carefully kneeled down and poked the needle inside the exposed part of the neck of the avatar. On the visor, data was shown while simultaneously being transmitted to my home. The readings were shocking. The avatar was in deep sleep, but brain activity was unusually high, like he was having a lucid dream. I broke the needle, with the outside end turning into a transmitter, continuously transmitting data to us. Now I made the multi-tool change into a thermodynamic detector and again stuck it inside the neck at a different position.

The detector started sending readings, and this time results were expected, at least by the Daevic team. The Avatar was the source of magical energy. It was the source of power for the Daevas. This was talked about by the Daevites themselves in their songs, prayers, and stories. The main work was done.
All that was left for me was to wait for the door to open.

After sixteen hours, the door finally opened as three men entered. I silently left the chamber.

Walking through the labyrinth-like halls of the palace, I felt like I was lost; the interior was well decorated. Murals depicting heroes of the empire They were well sculpted, like they were looking like they were alive. It is such a shame that the technique, at least on Earth, no longer exists.

I continued my walk, awning over the murals, until I heard a giggle. A huge door in the middle of the hall was ajar. My curiosity took over, and I sneaked inside.

The door led to a large bedroom, the size of a small house. The entire place was filled with the fragrance of various flowers, now extinct. The room was open from one side, extending to a balcony, while translucent curtains were placed to keep the fragrance in.

"My lady." I looked to my right; on the bed, the same slave boy we saw at the court before was standing in front of the bed while the bride, Vam Mainz, was sitting on the bed. "I am here now to serve you." The boy said it very formally, his eyes down on the ground, before kneeling.

"No one is here to remind you." Vam smiled. Suddenly the boy looked up, relief all over his face as he got up.

"Vam, you witch. Branding hurts." The boy touched the area. "Shit, do the slaves really go through this?"

"Yes. It is looking good on you, though." Vam complimented him. The boy suddenly lunged at her, playfully fighting with her. "Remember, they can punish you; now you are a slave." The boy stopped and laid down next to her.

"Tell me, how did you slay a Karvilgar?"

"Nah, that animal was already beheaded by the time I reached I just took the head and showed it to everyone, and I am the hero." Vam laughed, joined by the boy. "How do you become a slave, Huranzo?"

"Bribed a mage to turn a slave boy into me to fool my family into believing that he was me and I came here. Thanks to your friend, I wasn’t transported to a sacrificial pit." Huranzo said, "So Vam, how is life as the bride of our king?"

"Marriage to a bloody tree is the least desirable thing you can have." She said.

"Hey, let’s slow down. He is our god." Huranzo said this with concern.

"Huranzo, don't be scared; that tree is dead. All of this is elaborate bullshit." Vam said before getting up again, this time putting her hands on either side of the boy’s head and leaning down. "That tree is nothing in front of you. You are my real husband."

I turned around, not really interested in love life except maybe for a grave error in my understanding of the announcement. The boy was maybe supposed to become a concubine of Vam rather than a sacrifice. I mentally slapped myself. How did I make such a trivial mistake?

The giggle of the young couple was suddenly taken over by an ominous noise, like an alarm. Their tone shifted from delight to dread as I heard footsteps moving across the room. I turned around to see both now outside on the balcony, looking down. I joined the unaware couple and looked down. The palace was quite high, making it difficult to see the city below, but that was not needed. Not because of the camera on my visor, but because of blue beams flashing for seconds at a street. The flash is the signature of our weapon.

"Take this, you bloody savages!" Nir screamed at the top of his lungs as he fired his weapon, releasing blue plasma on the Mamjul police, which charred their skin and flesh, leaving only bone at the point of impact. Ten unfortunate souls were already martyred on the ground while a daevic priestess curled herself up near the door of a house on the side of the street, whimpering and sobbing. "Come and fight. Not a helpless slave, huh? A real man is standing in front of you, you." Nir was cursing them in Oleumese.

"Nir, what have you gotten yourself into?" I sighed before looking up at the sky and at the moving bright spot the size of a needle tip. "Shit."

"End this commotion." The order came, and I jumped down on the street, disengaging my cloaking mechanism. Nir just burned down three more to their deaths. I looked at the priestess as she looked up at me, and I retracted my visor. "Preparing for the jump." Another voice said.

"I am humbly sorry for this, your grace." I said in my broken Daevic before walking up to Nir as he burned his latest victim down.

"You all will burn; come here and take it." Nir shouted as I placed my hand over his shoulder.

"Jump." I said, and our surroundings morphed from the cityscape to brightness and finally to the mountainous region, kilometres away from any civilization.

"What?" Nir turned back to look at me. "Ojhi mana?"

"We teleported to continent four (more precisely, Alaska)." I sternly said to him: There was some anger in his eyes.

"Agent Nir." Merer Yain said. "Report back to us back at Oleum; Ainz Mana demands your immediate presence." Hie Merer Ainz is the de facto ruler of Oleum and the oldest man alive in the galaxy. While mostly remaining behind the scenes, even for other High Councillors who are not interested in regulating the lives of Oleumese, he is still the only form of authority that even the most freedom-loving, anti-government person fears disobeying. I believed that he saw Nir doing his mess back there. Nir was a goner, for sure.

Nir stomped his legs in defiance before starting to walk away. "Screw you all!" He shouted before he ran away, down from the hill we were standing on.

"Merer, may I talk to him first before sending him back?" I asked. "In isolation?"

"Granted. But abort the mission now. The data you have sent us is enough; the council will convene tomorrow." The command went offline as I began to walk, preparing to walk a large distance to find the boy, but good for me, he was just a few metres away, sitting down on the icy ground, silent.
Nir, I said as I walked over to him and sat down on a large rock lying next to him.

"Go away." Nir muttered.

"What was that, back at Mamjul?" I asked Nir.

"I was just saving a child from those monsters." Nir looked up at me. "I fucked up, right?" His visor was down, and tears were falling from his eyes. "They will track that child down and do all kinds of horrible shit to him since I messed up."

"You are getting punished for that stu…"

"To hell with it, Ojhi." Nir looked at me, his tearful eyes now turning red. "I am sorry, but I am not like you. I cannot be a mute spectator to this atrocity."

"I guess that is true." I took out another cigarette for me to smoke. I looked at Nir again as he was wiping his tears off. "Want one?"

"No." Nir said it again, though his voice was not firm enough.

"Take it; your lungs aren't going to die if you smoke once." Nir looked down for a second before, without looking at me, he took the lit cigarette from me. I got myself another as Nir began to cough.

"Goodness, how do you even consume it? It is hot." Nir took the cigarette off, puffing smoke out of his mouth. I laughed.

"You will get used to it."

"So, what will happen to me?" Nir asked about his fate, though there was no fear or regret in his voice. He really was ready to die for what he believed, something for which I admired him.

"Off to Kirsha." I took another puff as Nir was looking down at the ground; sadness was all over his face. "Nir, I understand this is too hard for you to take in. It was for me when I was in the Imperium. When I watched millions butchered for the ‘glory’ of the Prophet-Emperor, I wondered why Merer Ura even defended them. They deserved to be exterminated for what they did over the last hundred thousand years." My cigarette burned away, and I threw its bud off. "Then I listened to Merer Ura’s speech on this issue to the council. You should listen to it too; it is in the library. Our seniors have also left a wealth."

"Fine, I will, Ojhi Mana."

"So, where was I? The speech, "The effect of smoke started taking over. "Merer Ura was debating with Merer Yain over the fate of the Imperium. Yain said that they are the epitome of evil and must be removed from the galaxy, else they will ruin it. You know what Merer Ura said?"

"…" He looked at me, curious.

"Oleumese spend most of their time in the digital realm, including Yain doing heinous stuff I cannot even speak about…"

"What the hell is this even related to the Imperium?"

"Yain personally sends billions of simulated humans to a fate worse than death for giggles."

"This means nothing; this is in the digital realm."

"Yain said this too; Merer Ura replied that they are lifelike and capable of feeling pain; why haven’t we shut this madness down already?"

"But they aren't real; they are just bits of data."

"That, my friend, is the problem. We never saw those life-like, sentient, simulated humans as equals; with what right will we judge those people? The Chir Imperium, sadly, sees all humans not sharing the trait of silver hair as nothing more than animals, but that will never warrant extermination.’" Nir tried to open his mouth but could not utter a word. "‘Evil and good mean nothing; this genocide is just the ultimate expression of a war of resources and personal welfare. Of greed and lust for violence, something we Oleumese also have. We are neither anyone to judge civilizations nor is this our task. The Imperium is not invincible; someday a bigger fish will arrive. Will you then ask us to kill those too? I know that it is difficult to see such a war against life and against Gods, but that is what we are ultimately: territorial beings who seek to have more resources. We add philosophy, social theories, and faith to make this thing digestible for the masses. We have no right to punish people for things, fundamental to their nature."

I ended my quoting as Nir’s mouth was open. He bowed his head down, lost in deep thoughts. I took another cigarette to smoke, tired from my small talk. Minutes passed as I took seven puffs off.

"Ojhi mana, I can understand what Merer Ura is trying to say," he looked down, "but I disagree; I believe that we cannot just let these violent cultures exist so freely." He got up on the ground, looking at the moon, and said, "We may be imperfect, but we are the ones who got the mandate to rule this galaxy and to protect it. We are superior to all of humanity, and we must show them the proper path."

"Nir, our job is to keep humanity safe from self-destruction and extra-galactic threats, not to solve their problems." I said.

"No, Ojhi Mana, we have a moral duty, as the most powerful race of humans, to stitch a path for them to follow." The words that came out of his mouth took me aback. "After hearing Merer, I now understand what is wrong with Daevas. They are but children, unenlightened beings who need to be taught what it is to be civilised."

"Nir, you are now promoting colonialism. The entire point of the speech was to show that there is no correct standard of civilization. The good and bad are ultimately relative."

"I agree, but you agree that we should aim for a state where suffering is minimal for everyone. That can be achieved if we put in the effort. You said we are supposed to protect humanity from self-destruction. What kind of self-destruction? That they don't snuff off every star in the galaxy, or that vile ideas like I saw at Mamjul, where they ripped a child from his mother’s arms to be sacrificed, are eliminated before they become widespread?"

Before I could answer, the light from above engulfed us as our ship started descending. The change Nir showed in just a day shocked me. How can someone who was interested in learning about different cultures start advocating to destroy them if they don’t fit a standard? I wish I could have talked to him about this in the future.

We came back to Oleum as Nir was taken to the High Council, where he was punished by being sent off to Kirsha, the supermassive black hole at the centre of Morar, to watch over the main terminal from where protectors were controlled. However, Nir then disappeared without any trace and was never found again until this date. I wondered where he even went. Maybe he went to a primitive world to create his utopia, but I believe he only found disappointment. The very idea of a utopia is nonsense. Even Oleum, with the life of pleasure it gives to its citizens, only amplifies some problems others do not have.

The next day, I debriefed the council, which then voted to let the Daveites stay since they were no threat to us or humanity as a whole. They were just too weak for that.

I was worn out due to this task, so I decided to fetch myself a drink. The Oleum’s taverns are a hub of hedonism, and my life spent outside made me allergic to it; thus, I decided to take it from within the HQ.

I entered the small bar, which was filled with agents, young and old, chatting with each other about their tasks and other stuff. I wished Nir was there; I wanted to have him meet with people who would have proved useful for his future endeavours. But that was fate.

I sat at the counter before ordering an Urnan, or the equivalent of beer for me. The waiter slid the glass to me as I took some sips of it, refreshing my body.

"One more." A familiar voice reached my ears as I looked to my right. A woman was slumped over the counter, drunk and her face in an everlasting agony.

"Siytin?" I recognised her; she was an agent I trained a couple of centuries ago.

"Ojhi mana?" She tried to sit straight up, though the alcohol was impeding her from doing it. She, with great struggle, maintained a dignified posture. "Good day."

"I thought you were dead." Siystin was nearly three hundred years old and was done with life. I remembered she gave a farewell party a couple of weeks ago, though I was out of Oleum at that time, thus missing seeing her one final time.

"I was for a good while," she gave a weak smile, "till Merer Ura woke me back up, saying that I messed up some reports and he wants me to correct them. By the gods, they are backbreaking. I want to be dead again; this is crushing my soul." I giggled with piteousness at her as she gave me the same. "Can you help me?"

"Of course, dear." I said, putting the glass down. Siytin tried to push herself up from the counter, though she slumped back. I held her left arm and put it back behind my neck, helping her stand. She must have drunk a jar of Ir.

Dragging her, we left the bar and returned to our important duties.

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