The four bodies have been torn to pieces, mutilated beyond recognition. Clare, who has not closed her eyes even to blink, can tell you which of the severed limbs, thrown and scattered heedlessly to lie where they fell on the rocky terrain, belonged to whom.

"Clare. It's all right now."

The fight had ended in an instant. Teresa had readied her sword, and then Priscilla had moved, and by the time those other three women realized what had happened—well, they hadn't stood a chance before, so now their fates were truly sealed.

"Come on, Clare. Let's get going."

And Clare—now that everything is over, now that the blood is cooling and sticky where it splattered on her face, and thick pieces of one of the women are caught in her hair, and Teresa is okay, she's not hurt, she's alive, she's okay—Clare admits that she was so scared. The other women came to take Teresa away and they'd come so close and Priscilla was a mean stupid liar but now everything is okay and there's nothing to be afraid of at all now.

"Are you hungry, Clare? We'll get you something to eat."

Teresa smiles, and even though Clare isn't frightened anymore, she can't make her legs move, she can't get up. It looks like Teresa understands, though, because she reaches down to help Clare. She's very careful of the parts of her hands that are sharp and pointed, and Clare isn't cut at all when she stands up. She does have more blood on her clothes now, though. It's not surprising; Clare is liberally splattered with it, but Teresa is positively covered in gore. When she smiles down at Clare again, her teeth are still red near the gums.

"Maybe I'll have a little something to eat, too. I know I just ate, but it wasn't very good... I'm famished."

Clare isn't really sure she can keep anything down for a while, but she nods happily anyway. As long as Teresa is okay, she can do anything. As they begin to make their way off the impromptu-battlefield, Clare slips on a rib—probably one of Priscilla's—hidden where it had clattered down the rocks, and Teresa carefully catches the girl and holds her until she regains her balance. Despite her best efforts, the newly-formed ridges on her hands end up cutting Clare on the arm.

Teresa holds on to Clare for a long time. Clare waits, patiently, until Teresa finally shudders and lets go of her. "We—we better get you cleaned up, too," the woman says, and her breathing is unusually ragged. Clare wants to ask why, but imagines that Teresa is probably exhausted after how much she had to do to kill those other warriors.

Teresa tells herself that it is only the blood of her fellows coating Clare that makes the little girl smell so delicious, and that once she washes up, it will no longer be an issue. Teresa knows better, and she wonders if it wouldn't have been better to die.

[ce que je fais pour te proteger]