I have ventured throughout Sarcadia for over eight hundred years.
I have vanquished the last remnants of Tenebris from Sarcadia.
This realm is once again sanctuary to all.
Yet, I am disgusted by its inhabitants.
I have witnessed the rise of ruthless empire only for it to be replaced by another.
I have watched countries tear themselves apart from the inside.
Brothers kill brothers.
Sisters kill sisters.
People treat other people like livestock.
I have travelled throughout Sarcadia, aiding where I can.
The poor and meek are grateful for my efforts.
The rich and imperious wish only to take advantage of my generosity.
Is this the world I have healed?
Surely there is still beauty in a world I find to be turning ugly.
As I walked the lengthy journey from Nemar’Rak to Ra’Sabar, I came upon a wounded maiden.
Short, beaten and bloodied.
Her clothes were torn and bruises bloomed across her milk-white skin.
I cradled her in my arms.
She was barely breathing.
Her face was too swollen for her to move it.
I carried her and ran as quick as I could to the nearest village.
I made her comfortable and tended to her wounds.
For many nights, I sat by her side and kept a close watch on her.
She finally opened her eyes on the fifth day.
Though bloodshot I could see her eyes were green, shimmering like emeralds in the sun.
She used most of her energy to utter a faint “thank you” before resting once again.
She awoke a day later.
Perhaps her vision was blurred because she asked for my name.
When I told her who I was, she immediately fainted.
She awoke yet again a day later.
I greeted her with a smile as did she.
She apologised for being rude.
I assured her there had been no offense.
She thanked me again, her voice soft and gentle.
She felt eternally indebted to me.
I told her the only repayment she owed was simply to live.
Live a life of goodness, of righteousness.
She insisted she was well enough to leave, but I knew she was not.
I stayed with her.
For many days and nights, we spoke of all things.
She wanted to know more about me and my travels.
But it was I who wanted to know more about her.
She told me who she was, a travelling merchant from Alibrium, who had been robbed and raped by a gang of bandits.
She cried and I wiped the tears from her soft cheeks.
I told her not to fear them for I would keep her safe.
But I misinterpreted her sorrow.
She wept as no one had stopped to assist her.
She would not be alive had I not come across her.
I stayed with her longer, to learn more about her.
Whenever she awoke my heart fluttered.
I was overjoyed when she had made a full recovery.
But I did not want her to leave.
I wanted to be with her.
I wanted to share my journey with her.
My words to her almost made her faint once more.
She did not feel worthy to be in my presence.
I told her she should never think like that.
She was not worthless.
There is still beauty in this place.
And she has a name.
— “The Octavian Monologues: The Wounded Maiden”, Bruce Boward, 218 AO