Corthos and Gwen Scene 2
“Please, just let me see her. Let me talk to her. Five minutes of her time.” The large guard in front of the door glared at Corthos impassively, seeming to take the time to ponder each word before letting them rumble from his mouth. “No. Delronge says no talking to Lady Vodun.” Corthos opened his mouth again, but a soft pull at his arm gained his attention. Guinevere stood next to him, nervously laughing. “Cor, come on. This….this isn’t good for you. Please.” Corthos turned his attention back to the guard, stepping closer. “Listen to me, you oafish lummox, I demand-” His words stopped in his throat as the guard clamped a hand over it, glaring at him before shoving him down in the hall. “Thassit. I’m calling for the guard.” Gwen stepped between, waving her arms and grabbing at Corthos, pulling him to his feet. “We were just leaving, its fine, no need for that.” She half pulled Corthos down the hall with her, only stopping when they were outside.
“She was so close, Winnie. I could have talked to her, convinced her. She was right there.” Gwen paused, taking a deep breath before slapping Corthos across the mouth. His head rocked to the side before he looked back at her, confused and angry. “Cor, listen to me. It’s been six months. She’s gone, she’s done. If she cared, she would have let the houses fight it out. Instead, she took her money and her family’s land and moved away without a thought. She sold off your gifts, she wears none of your jewelry, she pretends that she’s above it all now – and guess what? That includes you. Everything you did for her, all of the hate you dealt with from the nobility for her, it all became meaningless as soon as she had a chance to get her own. So what the hell is wrong with you? Why are still pining for her?” Gwen’s face was flush, a heat rising in her cheekbones. “Where is the ring? Where is the bracelet? I’ll tell you – they are in the trash, in some adventurers bag, some two bit jeweler has taken it apart for the gems and trashed the rest. And she keeps going forward like nothing happened. But you….”
She sighed. “….You, Corthos the outspoken, Corthos – the brother who argued with father so vehemently for my problems and made them his own, the man who has always spoken his mind and moved forward…you sit still. You lay there and you sit and weep and refuse to move forward.” Gwen had received the package from the Opera House, making the decision to hide the ring and bracelet, putting the letter away in the very back of her notes. Her brother had protected her – watched out for her safety, gone to her defense, and she was not going to let him suffer at the hands of some fame-seeking starlet. “That is not the Corthos that I know and respect. These are the behaviors of a little boy, heartbroken and weak. You are not that. You cannot be that.” She sat next to him on the dirt, speaking ina softer tone now, comforting him. “You are meant for great things, Cor. Greater things than father ever was. You always tell me that. But you can’t get to great things without a certain amount of pain.”
Corthos nodded silently, staring down into the dirt as she continued. “You always said that the greatest pain wouldn’t be physical or emotional, you always said your greatest pain would be if you lost who you are. Well, right now, you’re in danger of doing just that. Cor….do not sit and wait for the world around you to change. You have to change it.” Corthos nodded slowly, turning to face her. “Just tell me one thing, Gwen. Did she send anything for me to the House? Did she give an explanation?”
Guinevere looked him in the eyes, calm and focused. “No, Corthos. She never told us a thing.” As the pair embraced, Gwen stared a hole through the wall behind them. She had made her decision. She could not let this stop Corthos. He was meant for something greater, the Oracle had told her that – and she would refuse to let him be less.
Even if it hurt to lie to him.
Even if it killed her on the inside to do it.
Because he needed to have a villain, and he needed to have an anger to drive him.