Kiri started to sit up, slowly this time. “Who are you and where am I?”
“You are in my home.” the hermit said as he offered a steaming mug to Kiri, “Here drink this, it will make you feel better.”
Kiri remembered the drink he had given her the first time she was there. Kiri pushed the mug away and turned her head fighting to keep her stomach from rejecting its contents.
The hermit laughed, “This will make you feel better and tastes good. It is not the drink you had when you first came to visit. That was wash water and skunkweed roots. What else do you give to unwanted visitors you don’t want there in the first place?” he laughed some more, “Besides, it’s a good joke for me and I know you wouldn’t be coming back; at least not for the fine cuisine.”
He pushed the mug towards Kiri who sniffed it and took a small sip. The hermit watched as he crossed back to where he had been, a big smile crossing his face. Kiri set the mug down and started to stand trying to gain her balance.
“What are you doin’? Sit, sit down.” the hermit commanded, “You are still too week to get up. Where do you think you are goin’ anyways?”
“My bar, I’ve got to see what I can salvage.” Kiri said trying to stumble towards the door.
“SIT!” the hermit said as he pushed her back onto the cot, “You’ve been here 5 days. I’m sorry to tell you but there is nothing left.”
Kiri stared at him with shock and disbelief.
Kiri set her empty mug down and stood up with more balance and more force. The spear she and Lexa was greeted with the other day leaned against the wall a few feet away. She grabbed the spear and headed for the door.
“I’ll kill them! I’ll kill them for destroying my bar and … and Lexa!” Kiri screamed with rage, “If they hurt her, I’m going to run them through.”
The hermit blocked her path.
“Get out of my way or you’ll be first.” Kiri threatened.
The hermit didn’t move, “If you were to go back there now, they’d capture and torture you; and that’s if you’re lucky. I’d be surprised if you were able to even kill one of his men before they captured you. People would see you before you even got close to them and those people would give you up. Even though it has only been 5 days, it is not the town you left.
Nobody can be trusted, not even friends or family. Husbands and wives are even turning on one another. Voler finds a way to get under their skin, into their minds and finds what matters most to them and he holds it in his grip. Using that, he controls the person to do what he wishes.
You could go and see how far your rage can carry you before you end up captured or dead. The other option is you can use that rage by turning it into strength and train properly to take the Envahir down without getting captured or killed” the hermit explained.
Kiri looked at the old man, screamed in anger and threw the spear to the ground.
Kiri collapsed back onto the cot.
“So tell me, how did I get here?” she asked.
“I pulled you out of the building and carried you here. Well, it’s more like I dragged you here; the point is, I got you here safely.” he said.
“How did you…? You were following us? Watching us? Why?” She asked.
“I wanted to know if what you were saying was the truth.” he explained.