Sabit, bound hand and foot, was hauled before the assembled Sisterhood. The hunters of the Pride on either side shoved her forward, eager to get their blows in where they might. Sabit’s killing of Dessine, chief hunter of the Pride, burned fresh and hot in their hearts. They drove Sabit through rows of refugees, their hands held up in the figure to ward off evil. They drove her through the assembled Sisterhood, looks of contempt upon their faces for one who had betrayed one of their fellow Sisters. They drove her onto a raised platform, where sat the esteemed head of the Sisterhood, Meriama.
Sabit looked deeply into Meriama’s face, searching for the contempt she had earned in the eyes of everyone else. She saw only deep sadness. Meriama stood to addressed the assembled crowd. “We are the Sisterhood of the Lioness. Like sisters, we protect one another. Within this compound, we allow no enemies. And yet, one of our own has struck down a fellow Sister. Justice must be done.”
Meriama turned to Sabit. “Sabit, you have faced a sorcerer in battle. You know well the power their sorcery can wreak upon their thralls. I charge you to speak the truth. Did sorcery compel you to strike down Dessine?”
Sabit could see the hope in Meriama’s eyes. If Sabit claimed that sorcery had controlled her actions, she would face a cleansing ceremony and the never-ending suspicions of her sisters. All she needed to do was lie. Sabit looked out over the sea of faces, hope emerging in the faces of many she had come to call friends these last days. Would she deserve their trust if she lied to them now?
“There was no sorcery,” Sabit said. “The decision was mine and mine alone.”
Wayfarings of Sabit: Sisterhood of the Lioness is copyright (c) 2017 by Michael S. Miller. All rights reserved. New chapters post every weekday. You can support this and other stories on Patreon: https://patreon.com/michaelsmiller or http://ipressgames.com/fiction/