"To serve her master, and be as she commands. To be shaped in her image. That is the part of a pawn. But my master’s image is no longer her own. Defeated by the world-steward, she fell into perdition. Having witnessed her fail to achieve her purpose, my breast was filled with regret. Yet amid that darkness, a spark of light, too, took root. Within my soul, a crude and inchoate mirror to the Arisen’s own, a new strength emerged, I had awoken to love.
I came to notice the changes within me as his tireless ministrations saw my shattered memory slowly mend. I came to love him. Though his heart was lost, he seemed more alive than ever. He burned with new purpose: to slay the wyrm and avenge Grette. I became his pawn of my own will. I, too, saw in this a new calling. To love him, serve him, and lend him strength. Ultimately, to become as him. It was a fate I welcomed gladly.
Defeat me, or speak your wish and offer up a sacrifice. A second time, I heard the dragon’s bargain spoke. Yet I felt a strange reluctance in its tone. As if the ultimatum were given unwilling. And in that moment, I knew it. The wyrm we now faced was my former master transformed. The revelation tore him apart. Whichever his choice, the wages were cruel tragedy. A new and dark desire poured forth from his sundered soul. His wish for power to destroy all existence marked me for death.
And yet I never blamed him. For as my life was snuffled out. I held firm to my belief. The day would come, I knew, when he, our master, and I myself would find redemption."