"Brother... wh- why have you done this?" Sadon said on one knee, his voice breaking. The figure turned with a familiar yet uncharacteristic grin, animalistic yet the most genuine smile his sibling has had for the past handful of weeks. The ever-present figure in his life stood, almost as a foreigner, infront of him, a stranger whom he had no ties with. He clutched his side, blood slowly seeping out, he begged and pleaded again but to no avail,
"Y- You leave me little choice... brother."
Sadon was jostled awake by the abrupt lurch of the carriage. The dream kept replaying in his mind. Though showing little of it, he was in a sullen mood as he has been plagued by these 'dreams' for a few months now. He rubbed the sleepiness out of his eyes before deciding to just not sleep. A little fatigue sounded preferable than the perpetual reminders of his past. A soft sigh escaped his lips as he sat there watching the carriage sway back and forth. His thoughts moved to his life servitude with the 'Red Hoods' before being interrupted by a figure beside him speaking up, seeming to make idle chatter to pass the time,
"You, I reckon I've seen you before. Ferres- Fedndrel... Fendrel was it?" he said after a hacking cough, "What is a shitty miser from the noble families doing 'ere? Sentenced like an animal to these mad jailers like meself.""... Reason is similar to most."
Sadon managed to articulate loosely after the initial surprise of recognition, he pulled his washed out yellow hood further down, "Atonement for a crime committed."
The rest of the ride was uneventful. The stranger shrugged, seeming satisfied by the response and turned over to catch some sleep. Sadon sat there, rocked only by the oscillations of the carriage.
The carriage came to a complete stop. People were practically being thrown out of the carriage, 'ushered out' as they called it. One of the guard clasped his arm in a vice-like grip and yanked him out of the carriage. The sudden shift of imbalance made him lose his footing, causing him to flip frontwards. Sadon was nothing if not nimble, he caught himself mid-air, landing on his two feet instead of his face. The guards chuckled and cooed amongst themselves, 'Wow, ain't a Fendrel for nothing eh?'
"Alright, 'ser Aristocrat', all yous is to do is follow Finlay." his sentry instructed, pointing out a figure, "Tha' one with the displeased look about him."
Sadon nodded, letting them chain him before following the herd of yellow hoods. His tried to glue his eyes to the path ahead but was betrayed by a cursory glance towards the imposing castle. It felt more like a well-guarded fortress to him- nigh impenetrable in its design. Functionality over form was a succinct way to describe the castle. A quick glance-over made him consider the practicality of the design, situated over tall hills with walls too high to scale, coupled with a hefty drawbridge it looked almost impossible to attack.
It was a few more minutes of walking before they had reached the castle. It was as grandiose as he envisioned- Banners of velvet red adorned the walls, the stone looked nearly immaculate, as if they were tended to every week. The carpet, being the same colour as the banners, draped seamlessly across the stone floor. The ocean of red hoods made it seem like the yellow hoods were nothing more than a drop in the bucket.
Sadon's eyes finally landed on the three oppressive figures on the stage. The Red Hoods were secretive, but even he has heard of Blanchette Rouge. She was a nigh-legendary historical figure. It wasn't exaggeration to say that most persons ever attacked by Monsters were beholden to her in one way or another. It's how her connections were wide and varied and how the 'Red Hoods' could operate under no particular banner.
Sadon tried to cross his arms but couldn't because of the chains. He eyed the figures, waiting to be addressed.