Laerra could still feel remnants of sewage nested deep under her fingernails. She ground her finger against the damp stone walls in an attempt to evict them, leaving a rosy trail marking her crusade. The warm bath she just finished could very be the last luxury Laerra would enjoy, but the sewage made it impossible to savor. Now she was clean enough to be paraded around a courtroom by her captors.

Two thuds on the cell door followed by clicks from the locks grab Laerra’s attention. “Your lord is here.” Informed the attending guard.

Without a request of approval Faelash, Ulfric, and Kearen Sekhmet invaded her cell. Faelash and Kearen came seeking approval or forgiveness, no one was sure which one, Ulfric simply looked confused. “Laerra, I’ve got some good news.” He said with a hopeful smile. “The house will only have to pay a small fine to make reparations for your crimes. We’ll actually, the fine isn’t small, but with Sekhmet’s new found wealth I think we’ll be alright.”

Laerra just stared blankly at Kearen in reply.

“Isn’t this great?” He asked, spreading his arms wide. “You won't even be killed. I was told five years at most, and they told me that you be placed in a more accommodating prison.”

Rage turned into words, “How can you be so happy with this?”

“Well given the circumstances I don’t think we could have made out much better.”

“Did you even try?” Laerra felt like a concoction she had been cooking at home, and Kearen was the flame. “I wake up at night to find strange soldiers searching my home, and the Lord protecting me is having tea with them.”

“Well that’s not quite right...” Kearen began, flustered.

“Look at Ulfric, the captain of YOUR guard, and you let him just be taken by the tyrant in King’s Landing. No, I take that back, the King had nothing to do with this. You just rolled over for the first sign of authority that approached you.” Laerra extended a hand towards Ulfric, hoping for him to chime in, but the lost warrior simply sunk back into the doorway.

“Laerra, show me some respect.” Kearen said as he tried to transition from his hunch, to regal stance.

“Why?” Now she was boiling over. “What respect have you shown me? Did you provide me protection, or just whore my skills out to increase your own standing? Elric probably claimed the cure as his own. And Faelash, how is your new husband doing? Has he grown rich in the wake of my arrest?”

“I am your Lord!” Kearen asserted.

“No, you are a lordLING, Looking for approval from those around you, but demanding no respect. For your sake I hope you leave King’s Landing before a real lord accidentally crushes you under their boot.”

Kearen had also started simmering. “Stop this now, or I’ll disown you from the house!”

“Wouldn’t that be the best course of action for you anyway?”
“Look, Laerra, five years isn’t that bad. Be happy you get to keep your head. And on the bright side, if anything happens to you, reparations will be paid to Sekhmet.”

“Get out.” Laerra turned her back on the lordling, just as he did to her in the White Dunes.

“Four Years!” Belched the rotund Robert Baratheon as wine dribbled down his greasy beard. He had no idea who Laerra was, or the importance of her crimes, but four years seemed like a good number to him. Laerra stared at her shackled limbs, acknowledging her fate. She would have struggled more, but that was not her forte. The only optimism she could find in the situation was the chance of being placed in the Garden of Bars. There she could probably even still do research.

With the sham trial over, House Sekhmet was being now being herded out of the courtroom. As they passed through the audience, the impulsive Ulfric saw an old acquaintance and lunged for his throat. The acquaintance clearly had the same thought as he threw himself at the Sekhmet Guard. Immediately a courtroom brawl broke out.

The ocean of commotion that now filled the court was a sight to behold. Warriors of at least three banners added colors to the field. A giant dark woman was throwing men aside like they we chickens, and Ulfric was rolling on the ground bashing someone’s face in. Laerra wanted to be in this brawl. If she didn’t manage to escape, maybe she would at least be killed and freed from her sentence.

When the guard with her leash let his grip loose, Laerra bolted for the brawl. Behind her the chains dragged like the end of a wedding dress. Not four steps into her jailbreak, a pole swept Laerra’s legs up from behind and the ground sucker punched her.

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Dim orange light bounced of the damp limestone under Laerra when she awoke. The luxurious jail Kearen had promised was a fantasy, but not one Laerra had believed in for a second. Her bed housed a family of rats, which seemed to miss the last corpse to stay in there. There were no herbs to harvest and no books to read. The faint wails of inmates who had spent more time here for lesser crimes than Laerra would be her only entertainment for the rest of her sentence. Laerra decided to spend the rest of the night on the floor, and plotted her distant future as she fell into a cold slumber. There was still a standing offer for her to rejoin Sekhmet, that could provide her with many opportunities to return Kearen’s favor of betrayal.