The three men trained until sometime after sunset, Silence guiding their exercises until the two younger men really were exhausted beyond their limits. Brooks left giving them a breathless farewell and finally allowing Silence some time alone with Lynuel. A part of him desperately wanted to admit to the boy who he was or at least what, but now didn't seem the time for such a thing. He had already had enough surprises for the day.
Besides, it wouldn't do any good to tell Lynuel the truth. What could his son possibly do for him?
"How are you?" Silence asked as Lynuel lay sprawled on the ground, focusing on his breathing.
The younger male stiffened slightly even as he continued to focus on his breathing. "I was happily not thinking about it all," he admitted with a shrug. "They don't understand, Silence. They can't possibly understand and yet, they think that I'm some kind of hero! I'm not! If I could take back what I did, I would do it without a thought. That man didn't deserve that. No one deserves to die like that."
Silence sighed and slipped down onto the floor next to Lynuel, crossing his legs and staring hard at one of the walls. "Most of what people receive in their lives... they don't deserve," he agreed. "There is nothing that we can do about that. Just as there is nothing you can do about the fact that everyone knows what you have done. You can't hide from it either. It won't be easy. I'm not going to lie and say that it will be, but all of this will die down. They're just overreacting. It's because people are so thirsty for a war when they don't even know what it will mean."
"How can no one understand what a war means?" he asked confused. "We have our histories and we have our elders. Only thirty years ago the country was in a war! How is that people can forget that kind of thing so quickly? Who would want that?"
A derisive snort came in reply. "Because people are stupid. They glamorize the darkest things that the world has to offer while ignoring everything good that comes their way. The Nzombiy do it just as much as the humans. The two species are far more similar than either would care to admit. And maybe that's the problem. Because we're all so alike, we can never get along no matter how hard we try. All we do is see the evil in us reflected in the other and in doing so, we want to destroy it hoping that maybe it will destroy our evil as well."
"The world doesn't work that way," Lynuel said shaking his head. "Honestly, I'd be afraid if it did."
Silence grunted his agreement. That kind of thing truly would be a horrifying world. Instead they had a world where people simply wished for things they couldn't possibly understand, all the while thinking they knew exactly what they were doing. Lynuel wasn't sure how that was much better, but it had to be. After all, people weren't simply getting their wishes. That had to be worth something didn't it?
"That's not what you wanted to talk about though, is it?" Lynuel asked finally pushing himself up with his good arm. He had allowed Brooks and Silence both to look it over at one point earlier before it had been re-wrapped. The bite marks had mostly sealed but the bruising around them had turned an ugly purple and yellow color.
Nodding in agreement, Silence looked over at the boy and studied him carefully. "I wanted to let you know that you should be able to see Imani tomorrow for about an hour. She's just started talking. She's recovering very well. You just have to make sure that you don't touch her too much. It could jolt her system if you overload her and I don't know what will happen if you do that."
"Isn't there... I mean," Lynuel paused and pursed his lips. "Is there a chance that I could see her tonight?" he asked cautiously. "I haven't gotten to talk to Imani in... well a couple of years before of this," the younger male plucked at his body suit.
His better judgment told him to make Lynuel wait. And yet, when he looked at him, Silence wanted to make up for so much. "Lynuel-"
Glass shattered cutting Silence off and shooting both men to their feet. Out of the corner of his eye, Silence could see Lynuel wincing from the pressure he was putting on his ankle and had accidentally put on his bruised arm.
The man that swung into the room through the broken window was a tall, well-built Nzombiy. His dark skin was off-set by bright purple eyes. His lips were pulled back into a snarl revealing white teeth that reminded Silence more of fangs. Though he doubted Lynuel could see it, there was a faint outline of red around the man's neck that made Silence's heart skip a beat. He didn't want to believe he was seeing it.
Would the councilor really try and kill him? Or was this for Lynuel? And if so, why?
"Leave now," Silence ordered. "You don't want to die here today."
"My brother did not want to die, you pigs!" the man snapped.
Lynuel hesitated as the man launched himself at the red-haired priest. Silence didn't indulge in that luxury as he twisted and threw himself at the assailant. He slammed a fist into the other man's jaw as they slammed into the wall before coming to the ground, Silence on the bottom only for a moment before he spun them over and pinned the man beneath him. A knee slammed into Silence's side. Silence grunted and raised his fist again.
"Stop!" a new voice snapped.
His head whipped to the side and he froze as he saw Lynuel standing with a knife to his throat. The boy's dark skin had turned frighteningly pale likely because his attacker was gripping the bandage that wrapped around his arm tightly. Silence had to give the boy credit for not crying out. His son was a lot tougher than he looked. "Why should I?" Silence demanded, keeping the first attacker pinned beneath him. "We both know that you're just going to kill us anyway so allow me the dignity of going down with a fight," he shot back, a smirk curling his lips.
The two attackers exchanged a look and there was an almost non-existent nod between them. Silence's body tensed as he waited for the attack. He found himself shocked when Lynuel was hurled at him, knocking him off the first man. He felt a moment of guilt well up in him as he was forced to shove the younger male off of him. He shot up only to meet two knives waving at him. He managed to get out of the way of the first as it barely sliced through the robe he was still wearing while the other caught him off-guard as it sliced into his arm. Silence gritted his teeth and wished that the two men could see the look on his face. It would likely have been enough to make them want to turn tale.
Then again, given that there was a band on one man's neck and not the other, he had a feeling that that wouldn't be the case even if they did know who and what he was.
Dropping back, Silence pulled his robe off and tossed it aside before he launched himself at the two attackers. Knives slashed at him as he duck and spun, kicking at the man and trying to bring their legs from under them. He felt one knife graze over his cheek and through his eyebrow but that made him smirk. They didn't seem to realize until a moment too late that they had only allowed him to see a little better with that attack. Launching himself forward, Silence took down the first man making him fall onto his knife, the blade cutting savagely upward into his stomach. The other man made a sound of something almost like anguish that was quickly cut off as Silence shot up and snapped his neck.
He watched dispassionately as the second man dropped to the floor, limp and lifeless. He spat on the corpse before he turned back to check on Lynuel. "Are you alright, son?" he asked.
Lynuel was staring at him in wide-eyed shock. "Dear God," he whispered. "Y-you're a Nzombiy."
Silence swore soundlessly as he remembered that one of his bright eyes was showing. He reached up and covered it as he looked away. "It doesn't matter," he insisted turning his back on Lynuel. "Are you alright?"
"Yes, but..." Lynuel trailed off and Silence remained standing stiff. What would the boy ask next? Silence didn't want to know. Lynuel already knew too much and knowing more would only hurt him in the long run. "Why did you call me son?"
"I'm a priest," Silence said with a shrug. "That's only natural."
"You should call me Brother than like everyone else. But you've never done that. Why?"
He turned around and forced himself not to pull off the ripped hood that now covered his head. "Trust me when I say that the truth will do you nothing but harm, Lynuel. I am a Nzombiy priest in a human order. Leave it at that."
"Who are you really, Silence?" Lynuel demanded completely ignoring the other man's reply.
Gritting his teeth Silence reached up and pulled the hood away allowing the full force of his piercing silver eyes to bore into Lynuel's hazel-green ones for a moment before they softened. "You look like your mother," he said finally.
He watched the revelation as it emerged over Lynuel's face. The boy stumbled back against the wall. "No!" he snapped. Silence stood watching him. He had hoped it would be different, but there was no taking back the words now. Instead he was forced to watch his son flee the room and leave him with two corpses. The Councilor would not be pleased, but honestly, Silence couldn't bring himself to care.