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The day turned hot soon and the sun glared down on Lona, Jon and Zairah relentlessly, so they kept to the shade of the trees that grew on the shore of the river. At noon, when the heat was the worst, they decided to rest in the shade for a while to feed and water the horses and to eat something themselves.

"Jon, may I ask you something?" Zairah asked.

"Of course, anything." Jon said.

"I'm sorry to talk about this, but Iohan, why is he still alive? You're King, you could have had him executed. You could have spared a lot of people a lot of shit." Zairah said. She couldn't hide the accusatory tone in her voice. Lona cringed. This was a dangerous question to ask him.

"I was thirteen, I was angry and I wanted to hurt him. Beheading him seemed too easyat the time. I'd just seen him murder my father, and that image in my head still haunts me everyday. I couldn't have known that he'd ruin so many lives, and believe me, if I'd foreseen it I would have made a different decision." Jon said curtly. He didn't look at Zairah. Instead, he stared at the slow current of the river.

"But now you know, so you decided to do something about it." Zairah added. Jon nodded silently.

"As you can see, this is his favourite topic." Lona said, which earned her an unamused glance from Jon. She raised her hands defensively.

"You're right, Zairah, I should have executed him, and if I had to make that choice today, I would do it, but four years ago I wasn't who I am now." Jon said.

"I'm sorry I blamed you, but if he wasn't still alive, I'd still have a family, friends and a home. He took everything I cared about from me, everything." Zairah said.

"No, don't be sorry. You have every right to blame me, I blame myself to be honest. I'm the one who should be sorry that he had the chance to destroy your life and so many others." Jon replied.

"I just want him to get what he deserves. I promised that to my sister when she died in my arms." Zairah said.

"That he will." Jon promised.

Completion Date
July 18th, 1217

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