His fingers are running involuntarily along the length of the bow, the feel of wood reassuring. His body, at first stiff against the wall, is now slouching.

He has always trusted he could see far ahead. No doubt this man, this murderer, is fooling himself. Whatever power he has acquired is no justification for his deed. The old mage, the one who thinks he is in control, is driven by something else. But he is no less wrong, blinded by his vaunted knowledge. The little man is perhaps the one who makes the most sense, but Adalmar can't bring himself to accept the coin of his trust - after all, the others know the half-elf just as well and think differently. That leaves the elf, fleeing responsibility up the stairs ; the half-orc, hungry for blood ; the drow priest, quiet statue ; the woman, a mystery. Khazrael, changing his mind - a wildfire. Or lightning. And cheery Lissa, who has turned to ice. Winged Tiriel, who still observes the scene and hasn't made her move.

Oh, he knows he is harsh with them, but for once it is proving easier than being harsh with himself. He had thought to find some solace here, for they share the same goal, but he has been deceiving himself. No, mostly they have deceived him.

He could reach out to Lissa, but not support her. He couldn't make that Elthan open his eyes and see. In this arena of words, he has little power.

Leaning against the wall, Adalmar thinks dark thoughts, until he reaches their logical conclusion.