Dalton walked the grounds, pensive. Much had been on his mind through the trials of his own resilience. He thought back to his last test. Looking back on it, it felt comical for a moment. Sitting there, getting the beat senseless by your colleagues. Why would anyone do that? He certainly wouldn't be able to return home and explain that to his friends and family. Although the comedy of it faded and replaced with longing. What was the meaning in this...torture? That seemed like the right word.
After some time he came to a seat in the monastery courtyard and tried to clear his mind.
"You think you could escape me out here Dalton?"
Dalton's eyes opened and his expression warmed after he saw who it was.
"Garret, no of course not. Merely trying to escape my thoughts. Your annoying presence, I'm well aware, cannot be escaped from."
The two laughed
"Well, something bothering you?"
"Aye it is. Seems like we've done quite a bit for ourselves here but I'm not seeing that get put to any use other than just rolling over into the next beating to prove it over and over again."
"Yea sounds like you've grasped the higher meaning of it there" Garret laughed and clapped Dalton on the shoulder, "We're just a bunch of life's punching bags. The Old Order just likes to make it more of a literal display. I'm sure you could walk out the gates to Highmoon and get beat up. Probably not to the degree that the specialists here can perform but you get the idea."
"Aye, that's true."
"Maybe you should stop thinking about it as something to prove and more of just a lifestyle. If you're trying to prove something by living differently than you'd like, then maybe it's not your life you're living."
Dalton nods, thoughts stirring "Maybe that's it. Maybe I just don't want to be here."
"Your words, not mine but I'd be fine if you left. In case you were wondering"
Dalton drops back into the moment and smiles "Oh I hear what you're saying. I know you'd recover...eventually" the two laugh.
"Well I think it's about time I start letting Toril beat me up. Maybe it can throw some bigger punches than you"
And with that, Dalton packed his few belongings and set out westward to the lands of Narfell
Reviewed, xp pending.