His salute was as strong as it was powerful. He knew Thalina saw it, he knew everyone saw it. Pieroz was not the only one who could impose his will on others. Let The MultiFacet try to push Shabina forward and let Arsin try to stand against him, the immature brat that he was.
The Vibulare had been gathering strength all these years, and today was the day for him to stamp it everywhere. So the Royligo would shake and The MultiFacet would learn to remove themselves. They did not need a middle, they needed Reason and not silly nonsensical delusions.
The entire world needed attention, and no one needed to be distracted by fantasies about what came next, when there was nothing.
He knew Thalina was slowly starting to see it his way. This Living With Contradiction nonsense she was taught was useless. The Vibulare might have needed The MultiFacet in the beginning, but it had been some time now since Fragmentition. It was clear that the Well had to be theirs for the good of the world. The MultiFacet could then join the Vibulare and terms would be offered. Then they could be respected as guests, but they would no longer be in control. The Royligio would fight till the end, and it would be their end.
After he won the ceremony, Billen would insist Thalina join him at his side. She was hesitant because of her connection to Corina, but he knew she wanted to achieve more, and she could certainly do far greater than just being a Liase for The MultiFacet.
First thing’s first. He set his sights on little Arsu. The pompous ass. Waving and sauntering, how could someone who came out of his enlightened mother’s womb be such an idiot?!
Their respective crowds were cheering them on. Billen knew it was important that he be seen as the symbol the Vibulare needed. He was the Base. Arsin was always copying him and trying to match him. Good luck he always took the lead. The din was deafening.
Just then Shabina spoke, and her words cut through the noise. Of course she said the same old nonsense. The Middle this, the middle that. They always thought they were superior because of that Middle Lining.
It was partially true. Middle Lining was more versatile than his Reasonal Lining. It did allow Shabina to go into Multi Spectrum, but it could not match the power and stability of his own ability. Truthfully, the two of them would never know unless they fought. He would prefer it not come to that though.
Billen had the Vibulare Charter memorized and he answered loudly with his own precise words. Annoyingly, Arsin spoke at the same time. Who exactly was the elder brother? As least Rydin had always respected him as an elder.
As Billen walked, he though of Rydin. Mother had made him promise never to hurt Rydin, but she need not have worried. Rydin was just confused and torn. It was admirable that he cared for all of them, but he was naive to think they could be a family again. No, that time was over, had been long over. Billen would re-concentrate his efforts on bringing Rydin into the Vibulare.
Shabina marched to the middle and Billen arrived right when Arsin did.
He locked eyes with his youngest sibling. Out of the corner of his vision, he saw Shabina kneel. He would not kneel before Arsin. Velut had been very clear on this. Defer as a custom to The MultiFacet but never to the Roy.
It was uncanny. He didn’t know exactly how, but as if some signal only the two of them could hear, after moments of staring they both knelt at the same time.
Oh Rydin, if you could see your big brother now. He could hear Rydin admonishing him for fighting Arsin. Well Billen was glad that Rydin wasn’t here today. He would not hesitate to defeat Arsin, to subdue him. Yet that dejected look Rydin would give him was difficult to ignore. It was like a luppy, all helpless. Rydin was helpless. He was not.
Today belonged to the Vibulare, today belonged to him.
Their ceremony seemed like a distant memory, even though it had just happened. Tucked away in the Violet Room of the Chamber, Billen was in conversation with his mother.
“…Yes mother, but he has committed a major offence. Did you not warn him he was not welcome at the ceremony?”
“Of course I did but that was a long time ago, you know he refuses to speak to take any messages from me anymore.,” she flashed irritably.
Billen put his hand up in apology. “Yes of course you did, but he never listened, he doesn’t speak to any of us anymore.”
His grandfather, Thadro stroked his pointy beard and chuckled. “That Rydin, he makes for a fascinating study, Full Spectrum! My my! I had hypothesized that it was only a matter of time before it would resurface in the world, but certainly not in this fashion!”
His fascination was cut short by his grandmother. Velut silenced her husband with a look. She was always doing that, it was a truly special leadership quality.
“I hardly think this is an amazing occurrence, Thadro.” she said.
“We need to think very carefully on how to proceed, and what reparations we will demand.”
Velut turned to the group of diplomats standing there. She addressed the most senior of them, “Truyuuh please have the boy make a note.”
The man politely said “His name is Jair, Reason.”
Velut raised her eyebrows. “Yes, whatever.”
Billen looked at Jair, who to his credit didn’t acknowledge the slight. Good man! Show your professionalism first and always. Jair showed how well he had been trained as a Liase and pulled out a prism and immediately began to scribe in the air as his grandmother hadn’t waited to dictate. With each gesture in the air the prisms mass decreased as the resin it was made of was converted into light. Unlike the lining he had done in the ceremony with his prism this light would not become a solid substance but instead disappeared into the optical data vault. So many types of prisms, they still fascinated him. Even these stilo ones.
“…The Vibulare demand that Rydin Razi be turned over to them for punishment..”
“… In addition, we demand an additional allotment of thousands of lite of water per Major Lycle, given from the Royligio share.”
Billen raised his eyebrows, what was she trying to do? The Royligio would never agree to that. Why not ask for it from The MultiFacet who may have to oblige?”
“… and future reparations….”
He did often grow weary of his grandmother’s incessant posturing, but he could not deny that she always achieved results.
“… and future concessions…”
However what was preoccupying his mind right now was not Velut, but Rydin. What exactly had he been doing at the ceremony? What should Billen do now? How would the “brat” Arsin respond?
Most importantly he would have to discuss this with the Ultrere… That would not be pleasant, but he would need to do it. They were not to be taken lightly.
“…. and finally we-“
However at that moment, a Paige opened the door and rushed in.
Velut affixed him with a glare that would have melted a line.
“…My-my apologies, O Reasoned. The MultiFacet Liase delegation has requested to speak with you and awaits you on the other side of the door,” the man was so nervous he looked like he would dry himself!
Billen wanted to avoid that embarrassment, and of Velut drying him out right there.
“Please, Paige, bring them in,” he quickly offered.
The Paige stepped outside and opened the doorwaza.
In strode in Thalina and the Principle Liase Batrouk, with a number of other diplomats.
Thalina looked all business.
Velut did not like the interruption but Thalina spoke.
“Please pardon the interruption, Velut Reasoned None, but on behalf of The MultiFacet I would like to offer our full apologies for the incident that has transpired today. Please ensure we are investigating this breach of security.”
Velut sized up Thalina, who didn’t seem at all bothered by the gaze. Thalina never backed down and was always a worthy opponent. Maybe Billen needed that in his life.
Velut addressed the Multi Facet delegation, “Yes your Facet should be sorry, the lax nature of the security was unacceptable, and I was just in the middle of our list of demands.”
Batrouk and Thuyuuh looked at each other and Billen saw them share a tight smile that was gone in an instant. Billen could not help but smile as well. They all knew how the game was played, the diplomats especially.
Batrouk was Thalina’s teacher and he was no easy line to push, his friendly nature was not to be confused with his dedication to his craft. Thalina had told him as much (after making him promise not to tell anyone for fear of divulging inside MultiFacet Information). Billen saw it firsthand as Batrouk responded, “Yes again our apologies. Please rest assured that Vib Liase Truyuuh and I will go over the details of your requests, prior to water negotiations.”
Batrouk however was not done, and before grandmother could get in the last word, he continued, “However our main purpose in coming is to ensure you are personally notified, that a meeting is being convened in the holding cells below to determine what should be done with Rydin Razi.”
Billen saw his mother flinch a little but she remained silent.
Upon hearing Rydin’s name, Billen became perfectly focused. That is how he worked, when he had a focus he wouldn’t be stopped. “Thank you, First Liase Batrouk, and you as well Understudy Thalina.” Thalina nodded her head as if he was just anyone else. She was up for this, and so was he.
Billen became very serious, “Our delegation will proceed momentarily, I would like to go see my brother.”
Batrouk put his hand to his head in the Vibulare form of parting, as did Thalina and The MultiFacet delegation, Billen and Truyuuh responded in kind: they were the only ones who did so.
With that, Thalina was gone.
Billen looked right at his grandmother.
“Allow me to lead on this one, Grandmere.”