Leigh

The following is just a little something I wrote  a while back based on RP that took place on Guild Wars 2. It’s unedited, so expect no great literature. The character Seyda is my own, the other characters are NOT my creation but belong to their respective players. In other words, the only thing I can take credit for is the text itself, as it is my interpretation of events that took place in an unplanned and unregulated RP session. The text contains highly violent themes, consider yourself warned if you wish to avoid such.

 

*

Seyda hated situations like these.

The young woman before her was Leigh Hayek. She seemed nervous, afraid, innocent. Next to her Jaekal was a towering presence, with his scarred features and grim outlook. There was going to be no good way of handling this.

The girl should be dead. It was more than a year since she borrowed a minor fortune, agreeing to terms of repayment and interest, only to never be heard from again. Until now. Of all people, Jaekal Greymane had spoken for her. Negotiated on her behalf. Settle the debt to a lower sum, he had asked, enough to make a profit, but let the girl live. Take a knife to her face or break her bones, she needed to be punished, just let her live. He would stand as a guarantor for the debt, and swore to kill Leigh himself if she ran again.

Seyda was already regretting her decision.

Jaekal got called up close and Seyda whispered, with her gaze still firmly locked on the uncomfortably exposed girl behind him. “Get your game face on or leave.” Jaekal didn’t like what he was hearing, that much was clear. Whispered words told him that the girl needed to experience that there are consequences to her actions, she needed to be punished, there needed to be pain. If he could not stay and assist he should leave.

“I’ll stay,” Jaekal said. “But I’m not your enforcer or thug.”

Not good enough.

“That may be so, but still I ask. Beat her, and save me the bother of calling in someone else to do it.”

Of course there was more to it than sheer practicalities. Of course Seyda could even do it herself. But for now, what Leigh needed to experience was the hierarchy, the sense of authority. The girl simply could not walk away thinking Jaekal held sway over Seyda’s decisions.

When he refused, Seyda came close to throwing him out. For the first time her annoyance even shone through the mask of uncaring and neutrality, and Seyda found herself more frustrated with him than with the girl who should be dead.

It wasn’t until the story of how another young woman lost her eye that Seyda understood just how deep his dislike of such a task ran. This man who quite certainly relished violence, with so many lives on his conscience and usually such an understanding for the more unpleasant necessities of business, he could not handle this. It wasn’t a matter of morals, Seyda thought. Not morals, but memories.

Had she known that beforehand things might have been different. But now, it was too late. There was no backing down.

First when Leigh herself told him to did he accept. The girl said it was alright, to just get it over with. If another was called in to do it, what if it would go too far, what if she’d die? Better he do it.

And so he beat her. Blow after blow, striking face and body again and again. He wasn’t holding back, avoiding knocking out teeth and injuring her too badly, yet still leaving her a barely conscious bloody mess. It kept going until Seyda stopped him with a gentle hand on his arm, and the calm order to pull back.

Leigh was still awake, slumped over in the chair, with a face covered in tears and blood. Seyda laid a hand under her chin, made her look up. Still awake. Not yet broken, Seyda thought. The girl could take more, for sure, should take more even. But Jaekal could not.

Was she now a slave?

If that is what you want to call it. Seyda acknowledged it calmly, willing just a hint of compassion to be seen in her eyes and her voice to soften. For now. It didn’t have to be like this forever, she explained. Do well, work to pay your debt. And you won’t be treated as a slave, you will be treated as one of us. In time, you can become one of us. You can be free again. But only by accepting your place now, here, with us.

The words would have had a bigger impact if Leigh had been properly broken, Seyda knew it. Here, there was still a risk. The girl was too aware. Too clever. She might know to play the role of the penitent now but leave at the first chance of escape. If she did there was no going back, she would have to die. Hopefully before she could cause too much harm. It should have been done properly. It would have been safer for everyone if Leigh had been broken.

A few more questions. There it was. Leigh let slip hints of her guile, her manipulative talents. Seyda chose to believe Jaekal saw it too, finally. Hoped he finally realized that this was no innocent girl.

This could prove a dangerous game. With a bit of luck perhaps Leigh could be turned, she truly could become a valuable asset. But the path there would be long, and it was a gamble.

Nothing more to be done tonight. Tomorrow would be a new day.

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