Disclaimer: Still own nothing, especially not my sanity lol

Author's Notes: On a roll with this one at the moment :) Thought that maybe it was about time we found out a little more about Rosheen, and the history between her and Yorgi ;-)

3. Non Dignitas Victus?

Rosheen sat quietly beside Yorgi, watching him closely as the fever continued its destructive reign within his body. The medicine she had given him would help combat the fever, but he did not have the spirit to win the battle being fought within him, he would surely die. As she watched him struggle with forces she knew were of his own making, her attention wandered and her mind focused on the vision she had experienced. She saw again the summer night sky, felt again the warmth of the gentle breeze and Yorgi's hand on her bare skin. She fought the urge to shy away from the unwelcome touch, but allowed the vision to play out to its conclusion. When the world once more came back into focus, she shivered against the meaning of the things she had seen. Was she to become the play thing of the Death Bringer? Would she be forced to submit to him, to do whatever he wanted her to? She could not deny that he was a handsome man, attractive in more than just unusual looks, but the thought of having to submit to him was abhorrent to her.

She had watched him closely for several years, hidden in the shadows, and she had come to realise how dangerous he was. He had seen her once, when she had grown careless and come out of the shadows. She had gone to one of his clubs, eager to fulfil her part in the greater game, and he had seen her then. On the dance floor, surrounded by strangers who had no knowledge of her mission, she had danced as she had often done with her clan. A short black silk dress, backless and low cut at the front, had clung to her slender figure as she had lost herself in the music; her movements were strange, yet oddly compelling, to those around her. Her blood had sung as she moved, a wild free spirit performing an ancient dance, which had inevitably drawn attention. Some of the clubbers around her had stopped dancing, drawing back to watch her alluring dance, and parting the way to allow the club's owner through the throng. She clearly remembered the tall, dark haired stranger as he had joined her dance, moving as fluently as she herself did, matching her steps perfectly. The feel of his hand on her lower back seared through her, and his very presence was overwhelming as he moved behind her, pressing his body to hers. At that moment, locked in his tender embrace as his lips brushed her neck, she had lost herself in him and had come close to failing her mission. It was only when the music stopped that she had been able to break free of his spell and make her escape. Once she stepped out of the club, the cold air of the winter night had been like a slap in the face, stinging her eyes and burning her lungs. She had made her way back into the mountains, freezing and guilt-ridden over her mistake.

Corshan had found her, as dawn broke, half dead from the cold and numb from the guilt and shame she felt. She had become his pupil that day, learning from him of the game they were part of, the whim of the fates and the importance of the man she had been drawn to. And never again had he seen her watching him, never known of her presence as she waited for him to fulfil his fate. It had been Corshan's suggestion that had led to Yelenna being sent to infiltrate Yorgi's operation. Rosheen had felt relieved when Yelenna appeared on the scene, and Yorig's attention was diverted. His efforts to track her down and reveal her identity had placed her in great danger, as well as risking everything they had fought for. Corshan had told her that one day she would know the Death Bringer, but that the time for their meeting had not yet arrived. He had given her no details as to how she would know the Death Bringer, only that it would play an important part in the greater game.

But now, in the aftermath of her vision, Rosheen felt the first stirrings of fear about the role she would play. Would she be strong enough to fulfil her part, to do what was required of her? Would she have to submit to Yorgi, the Bringer of Death, and surrender herself? What would be requested of her? Would she be able to become another of his sexual play things, after all these years of being in the shadows? The very thought of being at the mercy of a man who used women to satisfy his own carnal desires, with no thought to his partners, made her skin crawl. While she found him attractive, becoming another nameless whore in his bed was something she could not, and would not, allow herself to become.

A pained moan, sounding unnaturally loud in the silence of the night, pulled her from her musing and she looked down at the fevered man beside her. He had regained consciousness once again, and looked at her with curiosity, and a hint of a hunger she could not bear to satisfy.


"Rest, sleep," she encouraged, her voice soft. His scrutiny was so direct that she found herself unable to break eye contact, and it took all her will to keep her face impassive.

"I know you..."

"No, we have not met before today," she lied, her English improving as she forced herself to use the language.

"I can see past your lies, Shadow Dancer," he chided gently, a smile pulling at his lips as he watched her. The slight reddening of her cheeks, when she heard that name, gave her away and he relaxed back against the blanket beneath him. "I spent years looking for you, but all I found was rumours and myths. I had despaired that you were not real, but now you are here..."

"Your body is consumed by fever. What makes you think I am not of your imagination?"

"No, you are real. When I saw you at the club that night, I thought perhaps that I could finally make you mine, as I had been unable to do before..."

"Before? We had not met before that night..."

"No, we had not met, but I had seen you before. During the war, when my brothers and I were camped in an abandoned village, I saw you," he explained, pausing for a moment as a spasm of coughing racked his body. "I remember the moon was full, and the sky clear of clouds. I left my brothers sleeping and wandered into the woods which bordered the village. I don't know why I went there, but I was approaching a clearing when I saw you. You were at the heart of the clearing, bathed in moonlight. You wore a simple white dress and were barefoot, and you were dancing..."

"I remember the night of which you speak. It was the first night I had been allowed to wander alone, for my clan believed the area deserted of soldiers. But I did not know you saw me..." she confessed, startled by his revelation.

"At first, I believed you were a spirit. I thought that perhaps I had died and you had come to take my soul from this war ravaged land. That was a comforting thing; in a world where my life was not worth living, the thought of dying and being carried away by a spirit as beautiful as you was worth losing the life I no longer cared for. Then, as I watched you, I realised you were more than a spirit." He smiled at the memory, and the feelings it still stirred in him. "I was ready to enter the clearing and speak to you, but you left before I could summon the courage. When I saw you at the club, I knew I could not make that mistake again. I forced back my fear and joined you in the dance, but you left me again..." his tone was laced with bitterness as he held her gaze, his eyes searching hers for something she could not let him see.

"I'm sorry. I could not stay, I had important things to do that night..."

"And every day since then?" Again, his tone told her of his anger and bitterness.

"Sleep. You must purge the fever from you. We will talk more when you are well again," she promised. The exchange had taken much of his energy reserves, and weakened him greatly. He did not fight her suggestion this time, but his lips held a hint of a smile as he drifted off to sleep once more.

Continuing her vigil over the man who was know to her as Nex Addo, the Death Bringer, Rosheen wondered at that hint of a smile. The fact that he had seen her, long before she had been assigned to watch him, was troubling. What had he discovered in his search for her? What information had the rumours given him? Had he inadvertently been given an insight, however brief, into who and what she was? Or perhaps he had learned something of his own role in the greater game? The conversation had posed more questions than it had answered, for both of them...

Hmmm, that poses more questions than it answers, doesn't it? If you'd like me to continue, please review :)

Non Dignitas Victus? – Not worth living?