They were almost to Abbinkey. The wagon was silent. No one wanted blowjobs or even to talk. The calming and soothing presence of Monte was obviously missing to Merrie, but to the others, it seemed like they were lost in thought as they headed to the dreaded prison.

Merrie remained on her makeshift bed, lost in though. Did asking Ston to pray to Madock make the difference? Did he enforce the bargain? Or were the paladins already coming to retrieve Monte? No matter, she was glad that he was gone, both because he would be risking everything in the prison but also because his cover had been blown. She couldn't imagine she was the only one who would notice his mistakes.

Should she have prayed to Madock herself? She didn't know how. All she remembered was Talus saying that no alpha could follow a god.

But she did have a god, Parn. The Goddess of Oaths created her, shaped her into take other powers and magnify them. She was the goddess that Merrie should follow, but she never thought about how to thank the goddess. Were there prayers? Did she make promises?

The doubt hung over her. She thought she should thank someone for the help but she didn't know how.

Frustrated, she closed her eyes and whispered under her breath. “Parn? Am I doing the right thing? Did I break too many promises? I don't know… I don't know what I'm doing.”

No, that didn't feel right.

Parn didn't give her directions. Only asked her to think about her choices.

She sighed and opened her eyes again, looking into the dim light. She didn't need magic to see in the room. She could, but didn't want to. It was as if she could choose how difficult life was, which opportunities would be missed like the black butterfly and which ones she would break the rules to have like comforting Ston.

There were other things going on. The breaking compulsions were the one that worried her the most. She could feel them in her head, little pieces of divine power floating around. It was like when she learned psionic magic. She had to break it apart and use the pieces to rebuild them into spells. These were divine powers, why were they echoing in her head. More importantly, how did she understand them?

There were so many questions, so many doubts.

She didn't think they would be answered in one day or even on year.