It was over. They’d done it. They were finally free from centuries of caste oppression. The four friends looked at each with disbelieving glee written across their faces.
“We’re free! We’re all free!” shouted Alaric, throwing his hands in the hair and falling to his knees, a wild euphoria in his movements.
They stood in the ruins of Nevourna Castle; Alphards’ childhood home. The turrets had fallen and the courtyard was covered in debris. In the course of their quest they had set the explosives that caused the castle’s collapse, but he had seemed unfazed. Too caught up in their grand mission to care for the destruction they wrought.
As Alaric crowed out, Cami came to stand behind him, wrapping her arms around his shoulders, “Yes, we’re free.” She sighed. Now, a bitter grief flashed over his face as he surveyed the ruin of his erstwhile life. Then he turned and buried his face in her midriff, his arms clasped around her. “We can finally be together, Cam. It’s time.”
“We might be free, but it’s not over yet.” Interrupted Elvin, “We should get out of here; they’ll be looking for us.”
“Elvin’s right, Alaric, we need to get moving. Since we have destroyed the class system, you are no longer an untouchable. They can and will catch you and punish you, along with the rest of us.” added Rueben.
“I never wanted any of that Rueben!” snarled Alaric, whirling around and getting to his feet.
“Hey, hey, calm down guys, we just had our greatest victory, don’t spoil it by fighting.” Exclaimed Cami.
They all packed up and soon arrived back at their base.
“She’s right, besides now is the most crucial time, we may have destroyed marking system, but non one will know that yet. If we don’t want everything to dissolve into chaos, we need to establish a new order as fast as possible. That’s why you need to be ready, Alaric, we’ve decided, that since you are of the highest possible caste, you will be the one to act as Messiah.”
“What, no! I never wanted all that! That’s why I joined you guys.” Alaric protested.
“Be that as it may, you are the one who was born with a crown embedded in your skin, and we need to take advantage of that in order to establish a new world order, before anyone catches on that the children born from now on will not be marked.” Rueben interjected coolly.
“Listen here, Alaric, you are the only one who can do this, your status means that if you pretend to have received a vision, people will just follow your directives without protest and we need that kind of advantage. None of us can do the same, I was born with the mark of a farmer, and in their eyes Rueben’s just a slave; so you’re the only one who can do this.” Elvin said, fevered spark in his eyes.