15th February - People Palace - Morning

Edward stepped out onto the balcony overlooking "Freedom Square," thats what they were calling the grounds that stretched out before the peoples palace now. Gods people were stupid. They were talking about erecting a statue of this Enoch Fordman. Maynards long lost brother for gods sake, how had that one slipped past his notice? and those damned Ravens, what and who were they... well he had some clues on that front. Many of the bodies were found to have the right eye chemically burned, he raised his finger to his own and flinched at the touch. Not out of pain but out of memory. For the first time since his death Edward wished his father were here. If he were here he could torture and interrogate the old bastard to get answers.

He frowned down at the cane he was using now to help him get about. The recovery from that damned weapon the Ravens had used had been a long one. Seemingly it reduced Flagesium to an inert state rendering all technology reliant on it, like that of the Elesians and his own "upgrades" useless. A terrible weapon in the wrong hands, and a secretive cult of black clad nut jobs was the very definition of wrong hands. Lucky for Edward some of the remaining Elesian scientists were able to "fix" him, but not without consequence. Gone was the previous vim and vigour at least for now, and back was the pain, welcomed like an old friend to accompany the black mystery of his broken soul. He barked a bitter laugh at that errant thought.

Looking up he wondered what was happening up there. The Nexus had closed that night and it had not been opened since. Not that Dusk had any airships left to make the climb anyway. Maynards attack had become a suicide mission when the Elesians had turned the tables and closed the Maelstrom in about them. He wondered how they were faring without their precious Flagesium. Probably about as well as Dusk without its much needed supplies from above. People were starving down there and dying of disease and malnourishment. The symbol of the blind eye was appearing everywhere as people turned to the cult in desperation.

The Elesians had all fled to Graymire, those that had not died in the uprising. By all reports the town of Graymire was swimming in the arrogant bastards and their MECHAN brutes. There were strange rumours regarding the Delve, supposedly it had been locked down and nobody was going in. He need more eyes out there... his thoughts were interrupted by the sound of footsteps.

"How can I help you lieutenant?" Edward turned to greet the female officer of middling height. She wore the new Uniform of the Dusk Regulars with a beret covering her brown cropped hair. She snapped him a salute which his dismissed with a casual wave.

"Sir." She barked out "The Peoples Council is in session and Councilwoman Corbet requests your pressence."

"Very well." He replied with a sigh, "is there anything else?"

"Yes sir. Our patrols have picked up Westley Corbet, he was living of the streets in the Sprawl it seems. It's a wonder he survived the winter."

Edwards heart was in his mouth. They had found him, he was alive. Stella would have to wait.

"Bring him to my offices at the black gallows immediately." He delivered the command with such ferocity that the soldier stepped back. He did not care, at long last he would put this loose end to rest. Westley would admit his crimes and then he would die...He paused in sudden realisation, What crimes? The red crew were in the fucking palace right now forming a new government with the council.If he wasn't careful the bastard would end up a fucking hero and all because of the lies edward had planted in his brain... fuck fuck fuck. He knew one thing for sure he would make the man scream before any of that could happen!

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