The Right Thing

He's doing the right thing.

At least, Zephiel keeps telling himself that. He can't afford second thoughts, or second guesses, or second anything. The world comes first. To do that, it must be given back to the dragons. To give it back to the dragons, the usurper species of humanity must be eradicated. To eradicate said species, he must use his own kind to wage war upon itself to prepare itself to be defeated by its old foe. Genocide to prevent it.

He's doing the right thing.

At least, that's what the king of Bern tells his subjects, whether it be issuing proclamations, planning with his generals (and keeping their eyes on the maps rather than Idoun) or telling families why their sons will be spending the next few years in service of their king. The right thing. That's what they're doing by civilizing the nomadic barbarians of Sacae. That's what they're doing by bringing the cutthroat mercenaries of Ilia to order. That's what they're doing by preparing to bring this righteous crusade to Lycia, a land of...well, people not that different from his own. But he'll find a reason. It's easy to create hatred after all.

He's doing the right thing.

That's what the son of Desmond tells himself as he wanders the mountain paths around Bern Keep, taking solace in his last days. Yes, he too must face the punishment that Man has brought upon himself, even if he's the only one who accepts that. He's come so far since his days of naiveté, in the days where he could show up to visit his sister and expect only a tongue lashing from his father rather than an assassination attempt. Such was his attachment to Guinevere rather than his son. All things considered, he's still attached to her as well...but he can't make exceptions. He can't play favourites. If he is to remove the infection and chaos that has gripped Elibe, he must cut out the roots of the tree of evil as well as its branches. Even if they're branches of his own family tree.

He's doing the right thing.

At least, that's what the fallen ruler tells himself and his despairing subjects as the full wrath of Elibe is brought against his land. More chaos. More hatred. More delusion that humanity still deserves sole inheritance of this world. More fighting, whether it be directing his forces, or facing the leader of the enemy army in battle. So young...so naive...so very well skilled as well. So skilled in fact, that it is not by the hand of dragonkind that King Zephiel falls, but by the hand of a fellow human. How typical.

"So, you have defeated me..." the hero rasps, barely aware of the coldness spreading within him, or the blood spreading over him. "But remember...my dream shall never die. As long as ...humans retain control...madness will persist..."

And as Zephiel passes away, as he gives his silent blessings to Idoun to finish what he started, he can take comfort in at least one thing...

...he's always done the right thing.

Update (2011-08-29): Addressed pronoun issue.