Crime and punishment

Difficult decisions

In a quiet moment, Daargan draws out his journal and begins to write once more.

I feel the need to write and voice my thoughts, but know not where to begin. We have a dilemma in the barony.

Now I notice I wrote ‘we’, without giving it a thought… truly, I do begin to feel at home here.

A ‘cult’ of Gyronna—if one can call a half-dozen scared women and a priestess—had set up in town, and thanks to Eoghan’s watchfulness we were able to accost them in their lair. The scared women are now scared, imprisoned women, and the priestess suffers under a Death Gag which we were able to stop before it did its work, but not before taking her voice. The quandary is as to what should happen with them now.

In the past, and without accountability to others, I would likely have just slain them rather than attempt to take them prisoner. That was not possible this time and, even if it were, I no longer think that is the path I would choose. Given the situation, our goal as a Council is to find the best compromise between security and decency. Severina has given me a document which indicates that worship of Gyronna may still be illegal, although it does not define the punishment for such acts, which is both liberating for us but also puts us in the position of setting a precedent. These events have also impressed upon me the need to create a more formal magical code of conduct for the barony in the near future.

To kill them all would be an easy solution, but honestly I don’t believe they are a danger (aside from their priestess), and such would be unnecessarily harsh. I believe that those others who were involved in their apprehension feel the same way, although don’t know the opinions of those more removed from the situation. Likewise, any punishment which makes them known to the populace opens them up for reprisal and ostracism, which could push them further still to Gyronna. The choice seems to be between death and freedom; freedom feels like the right thing to do, although there is the worrying possibility of the cult returning in the future, should its members decide not to change their ways.

The priestess presents different challenges. She is committed, and so will likely have to die; with her ruined throat, such action may well be an act of mercy. The Death Gag must have been placed by a powerful superior, and it would therefore behove us to interrogate the priestess to find out more about the activities of Gyronna’s church in the surrounding lands, lest we come upon more unwelcome surprises. But without the ability to speak, such will be difficult, and I do not believe she would cooperate willingly in any case. There are levels of unpleasant behaviour to which we could stoop. I would rather not walk too far down that road.

We must make our recommendations soon. I did not sleep much last night, and expect tonight to be similar.


kitsuki Bookkeeper

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