When I woke I was back in Lexington proper. I was lying on the grass in front of the courthouse and as I sat up I could see that the area in front of the courthouse had been converted into some sort of triage. To my left were a couple dozen injured women and one man.
“Dammit, Ducky, don’t you believe in bringing anybody back alive?”
I looked up to see Sanchez standing above me. I tried to get up, but my legs wobbled and I ended up falling back to the grass. Sanchez just grinned.
“Stay down. Nothing wrong with you that a good night’s sleep won’t fix. That asshole split your reality - just yours - and the remerging zonked you. Best I can figure he thought maybe it would weaken you enough to give Taug a shot. Over four hundred dead goblins later, he learned better.”
I shook my head causing a burst of pain in my temples. That took a second to clear. When it was mostly gone I looked up at Sanchez.
“That doesn’t make sense. He gave me the weapons which kept me alive.”
“Gave you . . .” Sancez’s eyes widened and she knelt down next to me. “Ducky, please tell me you didn’t take anything from that dirtbag.”
“He said he owed me for Taug. He gave me tactical gear and some sort of super pistol. He said it would more than make up for Taug’s actions.”
“More than? You sure he said more than?”
I thought for a second and nodded.
Sanchez put her head down with her left hand covering her eyes. Then she sighed and looked at me.
“Ducky, exactly how stupid can you be? He was playing you. It was all a big game. Always is to him. Sacrificed all those goblins, trolls, ogres, and even Taug just so he could put you in his debt. Asshole.”
I wasn’t sure if Sanchez was talking about me or Svarog and at the moment I didn’t care. I’d just incurred a debt to an incredibly powerful being who did not wish me well.
This day sucks.