She wakes in barred shackles, her back stiff, knees and legs aching, head pounding. She thinks this the extent of her damages, when suddenly, her hand feels as if it's trying to split itself apart. She cries out and claps her eyes on it, a glowing, angry scar on her palm that flares sporadically with energy unknown.
Except she does know this energy. She's intimately familiar with it, in fact. She stares at it in abject horror. She had thought herself done with this curse. The creator of it was long gone, as was the object that had branded it into her skin to begin with, shattered and lost to time. Time... wait. Why was she in shackles?
The clanging sound of the cell door opening resounded in her ears as it echoed off the bars and walls of her cage, her ill-adjusted eyes looking up to see none other than Cassandra and Lelianna walking through the door, the guards surrounding her sheathing their swords as one and standing at attention. Cassandra is angrier than she remembers, she can see the rage and pain in her eyes as the seeker she knows so well closes in on her menacingly.
Cassandra circles her, leaning in to press the question close to her ear, an intimidation tactic. "Tell me why we shouldn't kill you now," she straightens, her voice shaking with a mixture of rage and grief as she continued, "The conclave is destroyed. Everyone who attended is dead. Except for you." She watches as Cassandra points an accusatory finger at her once more, just as she had before, well over a year ago now.
She has to gather her wits, and quickly. How she is here again, why she was sent back, as shocking, disorienting and insane as it may be, these questions can wait. If this is real, her life is in immediate danger, and she must answer properly, or face death.
"What do you mean, 'everyone's dead'?" she asked, remembering how she'd answered before, barely in the nick of time.
Cassandra grabs her left hand, lifting it. "Explain this."
Just as before, she can't obey the seeker's order. There was no logical explanation for the mark before Adamant, before... him.
She barely kept herself from shuddering as her mind provided fodder for the flame that nestled in the open wound he'd left on her soul. Every time it found fuel, it singed away one more tiny piece of her.
"You're lying!" Cassandra shoves her, providing a welcome distraction from her thoughts as her mind focused sharply on the task at hand. Good, yes, this is what she needs. Getting distracted by... that... is not a good idea right now.
She manages to convince Cassandra once again that she intends to help. The shackles are removed, replaced by rough, thick rope. She could burn through it, if she wished, but she won't. She knows all too well what is about to happen.
The rope is cut. The journey begins.