It was late. Really late. Not that one could tell, given that they were in hidden catacombs under the ruins of Azure City, but Haley could tell regardless. She was going to hit the sack soon. But first…
"Niu, listen to me. I need you to get anyone who's taken levels in Rogue, or is thinking about taking levels in Rogue, and get them here tomorrow morning."
"Okay Haley, but how come?"
Haley sighed. "…Because the only way we can survive nowadays is to be sneaky and underhanded. The time for being all Lawful and Paladin-y is over. We've got to have peoplelots of peopleto be able to sneak around. And for that we need rogues. I can teach you guys; at least I can show you the basics."
"Okay. This room after breakfast tomorrow morning. Got it." Niu turned to leave, but not without asking, "What are you going to do tonight?"
"I'm going to get some rest; I really need it…" She trailed off for a moment, looking at Roy's corpse in the cart. "…And maybe I should clean off his sword. The last thing I want is for it to get rusty."
"Okay then. Good night Haley." Niu left.
Haley watched her go for a moment, then took Roy's sword and snuck back into her own room. She slid down against the wall, trying not to cry.
Haley was barely holding on here. She could barely take care of herself, much less an entire resistance group under the noses of a totalitarian regime full of goblins who would flay them alive given the chance! Roy was the natural leader here, not her! And with the other two groups fighting all the time…These guys were naturally Lawful; shouldn't it be even more obvious to them that all this infighting would just hurt everyone even more?!
The stress was really getting to Haley; for one thing her hair was starting to fall out. "Great, at this rate I'll be grey by 30. Or bald." Haley chuckled to herself sardonically. She sighed again, "…I miss everyone."
The only one here she really knew was Belkar, and he was a sociopathic whackjob! Not to mention that Hinjo decided to play the idiot card and didn't remove his Mark of Justice, making him drastically less useful in combat. …And everyone else, the rest of the Order, they were all either missing or dead…Durkon would be able to get them out of so much trouble, and Haley appreciated his calm way of viewing things. Roy's body was moldering in the cart outside; all she could hope was that he was having fun in Celestia. Vaarsuvius…Haley couldn't understand why her friend hadn't contacted them yet. Maybe V was just too busy. She hoped that was all…And then there was Elan. Sweet, kind, beautiful Elan, with soft skin and softer lips…
Haley shook herself back into reality. No good thinking about that, no good getting herself even more distracted and upset. Best to not think about Elan's warm arms around her body, his tongue sliding over hers, his delicate fingers tracing a pattern up and down her spine…
As if the stress of being forced into a leadership position and directing a resistance force of about 200 under the noses of EXTREMELY HOSTILE enemies wasn't enough, now her hormones were acting up again, screaming to be let out right now.
Haley glanced over at Roy's sword, lying right in front of her. Unfortunately part of her mind decided to take advantage of her addled state.
What?! NO! I am NOT doing THAT!
Of course, now that Haley brought the idea up to her conscious mind, her psyche began to form a mutiny. She became more and more tempted by the idea—Or rather, her libido was aiming a magic flaming poisoned arrow at her head. Haley felt a furtive, half nervous guilty desire. The last time she had really felt like this was when she paid a friend in the Thieves' Guild for some pictures she secretly took of Matt Silver showering; that was about nine or ten years ago. Haley sighed again. She had to get rid of this stress, and she had to get rid of it now. She glanced over her shoulder, even though she knew she was the only one in the room. She picked up Roy's sword and swallowed. No going back now…
Roy was looking down through the clouds, thanks to the Epic-Level scrying spell. He wished he could go down and comfort Haley; tell her that he was alright and everyone else was alive and okay, that V was trying to contact her and that she was more capable than she knew…
Then he saw Haley pick up his sword.
"WaitGah, Haley! WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU'REGAAAHHHH!!!!!" Roy stood there in shock for a moment before running back up the mountain (Taking a shortcut along the way), too horrified to speak. He sprinted straight to his mom's house and pounded against the door, hoping that there was a potion or something that would remove that image from his brain.
Except that the door was locked. Roy snuck to the back and pounded on the window, hoping that his mom would let him in. "Mom! MOM! You gotta let me in, I really need to find something that will wipe…My…Brain…………………" His voice trailed off into mute horror as he stood dumbstruck for the second time in as many hours.
His mom was wearing some lacy, frilly, pink-and-white undergarment that left absolutely nothing to the imagination. Lying in front of her, completely naked, was a man who appeared horrifyingly similar to Shojo, except many years younger.
"See, Soon? Don't worry; my son will get resurrected any day now. And they will take back Azure City for you!"
"And I heard some paladins survived the battle. Look, you've talked to them all, haven't you?"
"I know, I did…But I was…We were so close…"
"Well, Kim sweetie, there's nothing you can do about it now. Why don't we have some fun? We're all lawful here, and they wouldn't let this happen if it weren't okay."
Soon Kim relaxed and smiled. "Okay, I guess. I have been missing this quite a bit, in any case." He couldn't help but grin as Sara Greenhilt did a seductive dance in that frill-and-lace bikini, right in front of him…
Roy just stood there, unable to move anything except his eyelid, which twitched slightly. He made a pathetic whimpering sound for a few seconds, after which he ran in the other direction screaming as loud as he could.
An elven wizard, a human cleric, and one of the Azure City paladins who had teamed up at the "Dungeon of Monsters That Are Just Strong Enough To Really Challenge You" stopped their battle against a bunch of ogres for a moment to confirm what they had just supposedly witnessed.
"…So we all agree that we all saw a bald, dark-skinned fighter with blue armor ran past here screaming at the top of his lungs, trying to claw his eyes out with his bare hands?"
The cleric and the paladin nodded in assent.
"…And we all agree that we then saw him grab the nearest Mind Flayer, fall to his knees, and beg him to 'For the love of the gods, PLEASE LIQUIFY MY HIPPOCAMPUS!!!', correct?"
The cleric nodded, "That's what I saw."
The paladin said in assent, "Crazy as it seems, I think that's what happened."
The elven wizard stared off at nothing for a moment before muttering to herself, "Crazy sadomasochistic freaks."