“Your sacrifice is greatly appreciated,” Tara Geonette said. She stared at the three corpses and smiled.
The three women, Asteria, Agnes, and Zyra, had been the final Glenmoril witches that knew Tara directly. The fewer people alive who knew her past, the better.
Plus, there was something…delicious…about using their souls for her needs.
She stared at the three filled black soul gems. Each pulsed slightly now.
Had their suffering been enough? Certainly, they’d screamed loudly as they burned. Pain and suffering were required for each soul she intended to use.
What they’d gone through would have to do. She could always experiment with the next group of sacrifices.
She placed their soul gems in the chest, to join the others. How many would she need? No book was clear on this. Especially with what she wanted. No matter. The more the better. Souls were always useful.
She’d get more.
“Bedore and Lysona,” Tara said. “You can take the corpses. Practice your Reanimate Corpse spells with them. They were once witches, though,” she added. “Do not let them stay long. Dismember them when finished.”
Bedore and Lysona, the two Bretons from Wayrest she’d convinced to join her, stepped forward. Bedore was a young man with black hair and dark blue eyes she’d met a month ago, at the local tavern. He’d been about the only one who hadn’t flirted with her. She’d liked that. He was handsome, though. That chiseled face.
She’d need to behave herself with him. At least, for a while.
Lysona, a petite blond woman, had been hanging around the alchemy shop. Tara noted which ingredients she’d bought and took a chance.
How was it one could tell when a person held similar, dark interests? Sometimes, you just knew.
So far, they were both working out well. Eager, and with enough skill to prove they could learn. Not too much, though. Couldn’t have anyone wanting to challenge her. She needed loyalty and eagerness.
She left them and headed out of the cave. The day was bright, with a strong summer sun shining down. A few strands of her hair blew in her face from the steady wind cutting across the mountainside. She gave herself a moment to admire the deep red sunlight brought out in her hair.
Had Bedore noticed?
She pushed the thought aside and stared outward across the landscape. Her eyes rested on Wayrest, that gleaming city. She’d need to recruit some more. Perhaps she should send Bedore and Lysona?
No, not alone. But, bring them with her? Yes, that might help recruitment.
Or, perhaps, take a break from Wayrest, travel around, maybe to Alcaire? She needed to find a new home. The cave would no longer do. Too small. Too…uncivilized.
She let her eyes drift slightly west of Wayrest, past the edge of the city. The sky was clear enough to just make out the family farm.
Yes. Time to leave the area. Take her new, and only, disciples and find a better place on which to build. And learn. And gather more souls.
One more recruitment mission, then they could leave.
She studied the farm longer. So tiny from here. So…
One more soul trapping, too.
Yes. Then, she could move on to Alcaire.