“She’s banishing me?!?”, cries Deirdre, her fists clenched in anger.
Faisal shakes his head, “No, talib. The Dawnsister feels that you have made great progress and that you are ready to take on additional responsibility. The Shrine in Abu-Al-Bazit will require tending, even if the flock will remain small for now.”
“But she doesn’t have the authority!”, exclaims the young woman. “She is no longer High Priestess and cannot order me away!”
Faisal raises his hands in a placating gesture. “The Dawnsister remains the ranking member of the Brethren in Tuskany, even if her duties as Duchess prevent her from fully assuming the role. I act as High Priest only in name and until she is able to resume her position. Or until another can don the mantle.”
“But… But she’s doing this for her own selfish reasons!”, complains Deirdre. “She only wants me out of the city!”
The warrior’s voice becomes more stern. "You will not speak of the Dawnsister in that manner, talib. She has always acted with kindness and compassion, and never for selfish ends. She makes this suggestion out of concern for the people of this land, to ensure none are left without spiritual guidance. She is bestowing a great honour in allowing you to establish The Light of Eternal Compassion in the Holy City, and guide those faithful in their first steps on the Path of Truth and Justice.
“And was it not you who suggested that we require an alternative candidate for the position of High Priest, in the event that Jonas is unwilling or unable to complete the tazkiah? The Dawnsister and I agree that you are the best candidate, and therefore must take on more responsibility, as you did while we were away dealing with the barbarian army.”
Deirdre’s shoulders slump and her voice becomes more hesitant and shaky. “But…”
“Enough!”, exclaims Faisal. “The Dawnsister has made a decision and I concur with her wisdom. Once the Shrine has been completed, you shall go to tend the flock and establish The Sarenrae’s Truth and Guidance in Abu-Al-Bazit. There will be no more discussion.”
As Faisal turns and leaves the room, Deirdre’s eyes narrow in anger.
She may have you wrapped around her little finger, but this isn’t over yet. Not by a long shot.