Book of Clangorum
"And if you become a new breed of Soulless, what then?" demanded Meridian. "Would we then have to kill you?"
"I would gladly sacrifice myself," said Morgfyre indignantly. "I would do anything to defeat the Soulless Ones."
And that statement of course was like feeding meat to hungry lions for the Second Circle. Sacrifice was always one of the greatest virtues of a warrior. Orlachmar tried to articulate his opposition, but his own rage got the better of him. I could tell that warriors like Tauro, Thax, Ivanko, Krokano, Gruen and Slaay admired his strength, and the anger that boiled within Orlachmar's breast was somehow perversely perceived as a reason to take the elixir. It looked as though, again, we would support Fain, and as much as I hated speaking at a Gathering, I found myself standing up and clearing my throat.
"Aye, we could some of us take the elixir as Morgfyre suggests," I said when all attention had turned upon me. "But you can count me out. If you ask me, it wouldn't be a noble sacrifice, it would be the path of the coward. Corrupting ourselves, turning ourselves into the enemy, destroying our own souls, for what? To win a few battles before we lose all identity of who or what we are? You all know how close I've been to Orlachmar, and I've seen firsthand the changes within him. Bloody stars, he is not the same! The soul, what Dynara saw in each of us, is being destroyed within Orlachmar! You think that's noble? To throw away Dynara's greatest gift? I say no! I would rather die with honor and being true to myself than win using this coward's method!"
Of course, I directed this speech to my fellow Second Circle warriors and, as I scowled at them, wondered if I had failed completely. Most stared at me with eyes widened in shock. Morgfyre's face was white with rage. But then Krokano stood up and began to clap, followed by Tauro, Shikari, and Braun. Then others began standing, and the clapping became louder and louder, with huzzahs and cries of agreement. Oh, a good number did not stand up, Morgfyre, Thax, Ivanko and Gruen among them, but it was enough to turn the tide.
Thus, when the second vote was cast, Meridian's faction won by a fairly wide margin. Of course, there was no celebration this time. We had just voted to not use the one weapon that might give us a chance. Fain's face was flushed with fury, but he quickly took control of his emotions and quelled the uproar amongst his supporters
There are 20 among us.
(There will be replacements, good chance you will get in as a replacement based on recent history)
1. Sylandra (if she wants as host of last game)
5. not Celina