235 What will it be?
"So... That's pretty much it..." Hana commented.
The entire room kept switching between looking at her and looking down while processing the information they just received.
Marcus, Dia, and Ellie had a power that if allowed to grow, would be capable of killing a dragon, and Hana wanted to use this power in order to get revenge on the one that killed her friend.
"So..." Joseph started to talk while everyone was still deep in thought, "Should we... Vote or something...?"
"Vote...?" Ellie repeated.
"Yeah... Who wants to help the weird pale lady and go after a dragon and who wants to go home and pretend none of this happened?" Joseph added.
"I don't feel like helping the weird pale lady after she just threatened me and my niece!" Evlin stated while crossing her arms and glaring at Hana.
"..." Hana remained silent.
"Dia, Ellie, Marcus... You guys agree, right?" Evlin asked, "We have no reason to help her and put ourselves in danger again!"
"Evlin..." Ashley interrupted, "Let's think about this first!"
"You want to disagree with me?? Again!?? Really??"
"Yes! Really!! If this dragon is really so dangerous, it's just a matter of time before he becomes a problem we all will have to deal with! Have you considered that he might be the one that stole the demon stones??"
"Oh, cool!! So you wanna send three kids to deal with said dangerous problem!?"
"I know it's risky, but..."
"But what!!?? What if we go after him and he kills us?? What if he is just minding his own business right now and will just stay put if we leave him alone??"
Ellie flinched. Those words made her remember Flora and how all she wanted was to stop people from invading her home. Not made any better by the fact that Ellie was the one that killed her.
"And what if you're wrong? What if he is killing innocent people right now while we have this discussion??" Ashley continued.
"Why in the world are you so bent on standing against me on this!!??" Evlin yelled while standing up and slapping the table.
"Because you're not thinking!! You are too emotionally involved to make a proper judgment of the situation!!"
"Oh! How silly of me for being emotionally invested in regards to the safety of my niece, am I right??"
"This isn't just about you!! Others could be in danger as well!!"
"So I should just disregard her safety so others can have theirs?? Do you think that's fair??"
"No, it's not fair!!" Ashley yelled while standing up as well, "But if you're the only ones who can do it, then shouldn't you at least try!!??"
Ashley really had no intention of backing down on this topic. She knew how easy lives could be lost when those with the power to make a change where nowhere to be seen since this was how she lost her parents after all. She knew there were people that needed Evlin, and she knew she needed to convince her to help.
"It must be easy for you to say..." Evlin whispered.
"W- What's that supposed to mean??"
"All you gotta do is shout 'go get them boys!!' and wait on a chair while drinking tea while we do all the work... You have no idea what it's like to be on the frontlines, Ash!"
"Excuse me!!??" Ashley began to glare at her sister.
"Even in this last war!! You just stood there behind everyone else, perfectly safe while people were dying left and right!"
"I was observing the situation! I was analyzing our options and forming strategies!! That's my job! I don't have the power to join the fight as you do, you know that!!"
"And YOU don't have any idea of what you're asking me! You want me to put my family in danger again right after I almost lost my mother and my sister to a war that started because of me?? All for some stranger I never met before? A stranger that for all we know could be lying to us this whole time?? A stranger that threatened us??"
Evlin then smirked, "Guess it must be nice only thinking with your head all the time, isn't it? I bet you just see us as numbers and facts right now, who cares about how we feel..."
"What are you saying...??"
"I'm saying that I'm done being everyone's tool... Ever since I came to this world every person I ever met always tried to capture me and use me... I was never seen as more than a weapon that they could take advantage of... I just assumed you of all people would be the last one to do the same to me..."
Evlin then looked at everyone present in the room. Daren who used Evlin to help him defeat East, Leona who asked her help to join her followers, Gustav that used her to improve Daren's image, Dia who tried to use her to bring an end to her existence when she was Mia, and Detra who once tried to make a deal with Evlin to get Daren and his group off her back.
"Ellie, Joseph, Claire... We are going home..." Evlin announced. She didn't want to be in that place anymore.
"What? No vote?" Joseph noticed.
"No vote... I'm responsible for you while your parents are absent, and I'm going to take you home where you will be safe..."
The kids didn't know what to do so they just followed Evlin as she stood up and moved towards the exit.
Evlin then turned around and looked at another kid, "Dia, you wanna come too?"
"M- Me!?" the girl gasped.
Evlin then glared at Hana, "If you stay here, you run the risk of being taken advantage of as well... If you want, you can come with us and get away from all this nonsense..."
"I- I-" Dia didn't know what to say. Part of her wanted to stay with Ellie and the others since these were the only friends she knew. At the same time, she still wanted to meet her sister at least once. Not only that, maybe it's because they were related, but part of her really wanted to help Hana for some reason, "I... I don't know..."
She looked at Ellie hoping she could help her come up with an answer, but Ellie was feeling rather lost herself.
She just got her aunt and family back, she went through a whole war for it. She didn't want to throw them in danger so soon again.
But at the same time, these people also helped her. They all were in the same danger as her, they all faced the same war. Ellie lost a hand but many soldiers lost their lives. They all risked themselves to rescue Evlin.
"Aunt Evie... I... I want to help..." she whispered.
"What!!??" Evlin shouted.
"They need us! They need you! We can't just leave them! Not after all they did for us!!"
"Ellie... Do you understand what you're saying??" Evlin asked while kneeling and holding her shoulders.
The girl just raised her amputated arm and stared at it while wondering about the dangers of this mission, "I do... "
She then turned around and looked at Lilith, the woman who lost her eyesight to protect her, at Marcus, the lad that took a lightning bolt to protect them from Xadi, and Detra, the one who had to see her daughter dying all over again just to help them get past the challenge of the garden.
"I don't wanna die trying to fight a dragon..." Ellie admitted, "I'm kinda tired of fighting, to be honest... I think I can barely remember the last time I wasn't either fighting someone or resting from having fought someone... But I don't wanna go home and think about then being killed by him while I sleep in my bed, or go to school, or watch tv... I don't wanna go back without making sure they are safe..."
"Ellie, we don't know this woman..." Evlin reminded her, "for all we know this could be a trick, a trap, this could some scheme to lead us to our own doom!"
"It's not... I know it's not..." Ellie then turned around and looked at Hana, "I can feel it... Ever since I touched Gustav I became able to tell if someone was lying or not..."
Evlin realized that her niece wasn't going to change her mind. She then stood up and gazed at the ponytailed girl, "What about you, Dia?"
Dia looked at Hana for a moment and then stared at Evlin, "She... She's my family... I wanna help her..."
Evlin felt a sense of defeat, and finally looked at the only one left, "Marcus?"
The silver-haired lad noticed the whole room looking at him, all awaiting his response.
The votes were two against one right now, but Dia and Ellie were kids, and Evlin and Marcus were adults. If they voted on the same side, their choice would speak louder.
He gazed at Leona who seemed like she was facing an existential-crisis concerning whether or not she should believe her goddess or her allies.
Marcus wanted to help her, but he also wanted to be on Evlin's side. She helped him in the past, she practically saved his life. He didn't want to disappoint her, and he knew why she was behaving like that, she wanted to get out of this life of never-ending fighting, and she wanted to avoid getting her own niece stuck in there as well.
Evlin always wanted to be on the side of those who couldn't protect themselves.
But at the same time, if what Hana was saying was true, and such a dangerous beast was out there, then they needed to help.
"I'm sorry Evlin..." Marcus whispered, "They need us..."
Evlin felt like everyone was against her. They all acted like helping this strange goddess was a duty that they should complete. Daren and Gustav just continued to look at her, waiting for her final verdict.
The mage finally started to talk again, "So none of you are on my side...?"
Ashley started to talk next, "We are on your side, Evlin! But we still need to-"
"You! Quiet!!" Evlin ordered while glaring at her sister and making her shiver, "I don't want to hear another word from you..."
The red-haired lady was about to say something but the words failed to come out. Evlin was looking at her in a way she never did before.
Evlin then looked at Hana again, "Fine... You win... Leave the kids alone and I will deal with your dumb dragon for you!"
"Y- You will!?" Hana gasped.
"Evlin, wait! You're not planning on going alone, are you??" Marcus yelled.
"Of course not!" she replied, "You are coming with me! Everyone in this room who was ready to throw me under the bus is helping out as well!"
She then pointed at the goddess, "That includes you as well!"
"Very well!" Hana stated, showing she had no problems in going after Knucker too.
"But the kids stay! Ellie and Dia are not taking part in this! Understood?"
"A- Aunt Evie!!??"
"Understood!!??" the mage asked while glaring at them.
"U- Understood..." Ellie whispered.
"Great... So let's get this done with..." Evlin stated while shifting her glare towards Hana, "Where is Knucker?"