Ever since he had regained his legs, Art had walked himself straight from one disaster into another. He was beginning to think that his new legs were, in fact, cursed, and that it would have been better if he had never regrown them in the first place. When he considered the mysterious nature of the Gifts that the Son had used to regenerate his legs, he began to consider that something more foul was in the air. The fact that he had inexplicably been incapacitated right around the time that Alaric's mother died really sold him on the fact that, perhaps, he shouldn't have looked that gift horse in the mouth.
"We've got to do better than this!" called Isidore from his horse. It was true. Alaric and the others would need to increase their pace by a significant amount if they were going to be able to catch up with the Son. We shouldn't have hesitated so long. Alaric didn't want to accept the fact that, no matter how much he wanted to follow the Son, it would ultimately prove a fool's errand. Still, he and the others all knew it was their sacred duty, and they would do whatever it took to get there eventually. They retraced their steps closely, so Alaric was already familiar with the landscape, but it worried him that they were racing headlong and not paying enough attention to the danger that may be lying in wait for them.
"What now?" said Euric, to his cousin Bulgar and Fridok who stood idly nearby. They were soldiers who suddenly found themselves without their commander. It was an honest question for Euric to ask, and Fridok was thinking the same thing. After all, the Son was the only one who knew the lay of the land and what dangers might lurk around every corner, and he had already put significant distance between himself and the others as he carried Gailavira's unconscious body back to the City. Bulgar shrugged, offering no solutions. Fridok wanted to follow the Son, and thought very much borrowing one of the horses to ride off and catch up to him. At least that would put some distance in between him and Alaric, so he could focus on the things that really mattered.
He could faintly hear the sounds of someone calling to Him, commanding Him. It was a voice that He hardly knew, feminine, not a part of his core memory before the Exilium. Should He obey? By what right did that voice have to command Him? His thoughts were disjointed, broken, confused. There was so much that had happened in his exile, so many years that were lost to Him. Even His Father was missing in this broken version of their world. Why were the Gifts taken from the people? Why were His brethren subjected to such an impossibly cruel fate? Why had God forsaken mankind?
Wake up. Gailavira lay the damp cloth across the forehead of the Son, wiping away the sweat beads that continued to coalesce there. She had already administered to thousands of mortal patients in her second life, prior to meeting the Son. She had only lived one actual life, of course, but she called the time spent after the death of her child and husband her second life because of how drastically different it was from the time when they were still alive. She had become something new, something worthy based upon her own merit, and her value was now derived from her dedication to saving lives. Still, there were times when she could not save her patients. Those were the times that bore the greatest burden upon her.