Edward once again went down the long steps to the prison cells of the Garrison. He had spent a lot of time here over the last couple months, way to much time honestly. But times have become desperate. Sure, he has seen many pirate attacks in his time as Admiral, but recently something changed.
It's no longer just a few ships being attacked from time to time, but huge trading vessels being robbed regularly. The trading guilds had to hire mercenaries to protect their ships, and prices within the city have skyrocketed.
"This has to be stopped, and eventually, someone has to talk." he thought. "Hopefully this time will be more successful than the last one." Taking a deep breath, he opened the cell door, stepped in, and looked at the prisoner.
A young human man, who probably has not even made his 15th birthday. He was just a few years older than his own little son. Why does someone at this young age get wrapped up in all this? He hated it, but he had to get started with the interrogation: "So, we have taken you prisoner on the Vigilant, while you and your friends were attacking the vessel. You are charged with murder, piracy, robbery, theft… I could go on for a while. Anything you have to say in your defense?". The young boy didn’t even bother to look up. No reaction and no answer.
“Ok, Let's talk honestly here. If you are lucky, you will spend the rest of your life in a dark prison cell, and will never see the light of day again. Worst case, they will throw you into a cell close to the sea, and wait till the high tide comes and you drown. So, please don't throw your life away. I can help you!". The young boy looked up for the first time since Edward had entered the room.
"It's too late for that. My fate is sealed.", the boy said.
"You have a choice here, " Edward answered, "if you tell me, where we can find, the - how do you call them? The Lord of the Sea? Yes? - If you tell me where we can find them, I will make sure you walk out of this alive".
"I, I can't. You are really wasting your time here, old man." the boy replied. "Death is better than what waits for me when I leave this room alive. And even if I wanted to, I coudn't, anyway".
"Sure you could! You always have a choice. Just let me help you. I will provide you with a way out of here. Safe passage on one of the merchant caravans, right up to Asolios, far enough away so nobody will ever find you. Just tell me who they are!".
“I can not tell you! Even if you could protect me, it doesn't matter. It's too late. I made a big mistake, and now I have to pay for it."
The voice of the young boy had become shaky, and Edward could swear he saw tears running down his cheeks. Edward sat down and looked at the boy. He still reminded him of his own son. "Please, trust me. We can get through this together. I will make sure nothing happens to you. What mistake did you do? It's never to late. Let me help you!".
The boy once again looked at Edward with tears in his young eyes. "I, I trusted the wrong people. I thought they would help me, but ... no I can't tell you! He will kill me and my sister!".
Looking him deep in his eyes, Edward replied: "Look at me! Whoever this is, he won't be able to hurt you here. And if you help me find them, we will make sure your sister is safe. Nobody will know that you walked out of here. She will be fine. I promise.".
“You are sure she will be safe? You promise? A sailor found me and Neia stealing in the harbour a few months ago and offered us to join his crew. They brought us over to ... Please! No!" Suddenly, the expression of the boy changed from fear to terror, as he grasped his head and screamed, "Don't do this to me! I didn't tell them anything - No! I won't... please just .....” and with a last "No!", his eyes filled with blood, and the boy fell over, his head hitting the table.
"Wait! No!", Edward yelled, trying to catch the motionless body. "What the fuck just happened! Did he just .... die? This can't be? What are we dealing with here?"