Dohar was not sure what he had just heard. Surely Mother shared everything with her Firstborn? A look at the commander showed that she must be thinking similarly. “Mo-Mother?”
The Avatar looked back to the Firstborn. “What I am about to tell the Valiant is for his ears only, Luminary,” the voice was still kind, but it was more tense than when they had entered the room only minutes before. “All the Grove need know is that his Hunt is in the best interest of all of us, and that he is to rendered all aid. Now, you need to leave.” Unsure if he should feel at fault for her dismissal, he held his gaze low and to the ground. Her footsteps were perfectly audible in the still chamber, and the groan of the lift descending grated on his nerves.
That sound had barely vanished before he felt a soft hand on his shoulder, encouraging him to stand. With Dohar on his feet, the Avatar moved to look away from the rest of the Omphalos chamber, to the western horizon. “You must understand. It is not that I distrust Niamh or her siblings, or indeed any sylvari, but I dare not involve any more innocents in this plan.”
“With all due respect, Mother, I do not recall involving myself in any plan.” Any Warden would attest as much. Dohar had avoided making almost any commitments or big decisions.
The Avatar turned about and walked back slowly into the Chamber. “You were never given the choice, just like the other unfortunate member of this plot.”
He almost could not believe his ears, let alone think about where to start with this. He could barely stare at the Avatar with disbelief.
She had not seemed to notice. “Know that the future is dark for the children of the Pale Tree. The Dream nurtures you and the Hunt pushes you to great deeds, but in the eyes of the world, all of that will pale before what is to come, the inevitable storm.” She finally turned to look at him. “Know that this plan is for the good of all, not just the sylvari or the Tree. You and Siriin are essential.”
Siriin. The name cut through his confusion like a knife. “Essential? Essential to what, your vanity?” He had finally found his voice again. “You cannot force others to join in your schemes.” He had to restrain himself from shouting.
The Avatar turned away from him again. For but a moment he was sure he saw regret in her golden eyes. “Think what you will, it is too late to be undone.”