"You're going to be held hostage," he cackles dramatically like some pseudo-Earth fortuneteller who just told an impossible fortune. 

"Not really," interjects Lola quickly. "The goblins are relatives of Xorn. They're a kind of double agent, you see. If they have you we're hoping they will think they've won and come off their guard and then we can attack," she says.

I stare at her as if she's got two heads.

"Safe places are absolutely gone," Magnatus says grimly. "This town is about the only one left, and you saw what happened outside. Even we're not totally safe, and we can't jam seven million civillians with only a half-baked idea of what's going on into this house. If it doesn't work, they could always hand you back to whoever's left," he adds the last sentence as an afterthought. 

"Whoever's left?" I ask incredulously. "You're not all going into battle?"

"Our troops are little to none! We need every soldier we can get!" he explodes. Xorn mutters under his breath and meanders off out of the parlour.

I open my mouth -and thinking better- close it.

"And not you! You need to stay safe during the initial battle. When the time comes, you will be allowed to kill the instagator of all of this, and this is only because you're the only person who can."

"Why?!" I finally yell. "What's so special about me?"

All three of the Leviters and the faery stare at me. Magnatus only runs his fingers through what's left of his gingery tangles and sighs.

"I suppose it's time you knew the full truth."

The End

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