Brevman sat at a small desk. He was staring at the talisman that The Calculating had given him. He stood up and stretched. His lower arms mirroring his upper ones. He then turned to leave the room.
“Where are you going, Balance?” A voice whispered from the shadows in a corner of the room.
Shaking his head Brevman turned to face the source of the voice. “Not now Desecrator. I have to go do funeral rites for some people.”
“Those dead have been claimed by me already. They cannot be blessed away.”
The door handle was grasped by one of Brevman’s lower hands. “I do the rites for the appeasement of the living. Funerals are for the living, not the dead.”
Mrto materialized from the shadows. “So you won’t attempt to take them away from me?”
“You know I could if I needed to for the balance.”
“You don’t answer my question, salaman.”
Brevman opened the door and stepped through it. “You don’t listen, human. If that’s what you still are.”
– – –
The Balance walked through the streets of Rentaz. He was in the poorest part of the city. Many houses were nothing more than canvas tied to posts. He pulled bread out from his pack and began handing it out to the children.
“Come, little ones, and collect some bread. Balance says you should not die so young.” Brevman was dressed in a cleric’s robe with the hood up. Many of his local clerics had told him they were being attacked when they gave bread to the children. He had to know why.
After spending most of the day handing out bread Brevman was surprised that nothing had happened. He pulled out the last few pieces from his pack, and that is when they began to filter out of the dark places. Adults, thin with starvation.
“At least you still have the decency to let the children eat first.” Brevman set down his empty pack and next to it he placed his basket with the last of the bread. “Will you talk with me while you partake?” He was hoping this would not turn violent. The balance did not require their deaths, but if they attacked after a peace was offered he would find the balance elsewhere.
Surprised at the demeanor of the salaman the adults walked forward and cautiously took what was left of the bread. When the bread was getting low Brevman cast a small spell on it, careful not to let the people notice what he was doing.
When the last man approached for his bread he took the last piece. When Brevman had set the bread down there were ten pieces left. Now, after over forty people, the last piece was taken. The skravyn who had taken the last piece looked up at the salaman in recognition.
“You’re no cleric. You’re-” the skravyn stopped seeing Brevman hold one finger to his lips in the universal sign for keeping quiet. “Thank The Balance for this bread.”
Brevman took the talisman from Gormaliev and removed it from his pocket. He looked at it then back at the skravyn. “Here, I want you to take this.”