Of course he had always known he had enemies; but perhaps he had always underestimated the number of them, that or their determination. Looking around the prison that would be his home for the rest of his natural life it seemed fairly obvious that he had.

Now that it was all over, and he had nothing left to do but reflect upon events, it all seemed so obvious. Yet before that first shattering accusation it had never crossed his mind. Why would it? He was their leader damn it! If they didn't trust him, didn't believe in him, then what had they been doing following him? And they had followed him, both to victory and beyond it, through the battles to the death of Servalan and the dissolution of the High Council. They had followed him to the promised founding of a more open and honest regime and he had thought that was enough. Why, then, would they turn against him?

Yet turn against him they had.

It was probably his own fault. In the warm glow of triumph and success he had not allowed for the fact that those who follow often do so for their own reasons and they can be fickle. Or that power can be so very seductive even to the most devoted follower, and that leaders can easily come to belong to where you have come from rather than where you are going. Avon had warned him of that often enough, but instead of listening he had brushed it away as just another piece of the man's deplorable cynicism. Now he would have years of bitter and angry regret to wonder if the man who was more comfortable with machines than people was that just because he understood the both of them so well.

Years in which to wonder at the irony of it all, that, though Avon had tried to kill him and failed, it was his killing of Avon that had been the thing they wouldn't forgive.