Standing on the bluffs which once ringed Sentinel Strand, I marveled at the immense vortex of wind which all but concealed the keep at its center. “The Wind-wall,” Mattias offered, having met us at the entrance to the Strand. “Summoned forth by Kyros’ Edict, it’ll last until the last Regent falls. The Unbroken couldn’t get past it, the Disfavored couldn’t get past it, and the Scarlet Chorus doesn’t want to get past it.” Pressing him on that last point, he revealed that word around the camp was that the Voices of Nerat didn’t want the Edict of Storms resolved, either out of personal joy for the frustration it gave the Disfavored or for more nefarious plans of his own design. If I were to complete the Edict, something I presumed would be a requirement for entry into the spire as it was in the mountains, it would go a long way to proving me a threat to Voices’ plans. As I had thought to myself so many times during the past month, would Kyros include a completion trigger to the Edicts if the Overlord really did not wish them ended? As we pondered our situation, the keep all but unassailable without protection from the wind, Mattias caught sight of an Unbroken scout hiding amidst the rubble. They exchanged wary pleasantries, but the fact that Mattias threw in with the Scarlet Chorus made him no friend to the young soldier. He departed shortly, spitting at the ground. “I was going to suggest visiting Elia, but if this is the reaction I get from soldiers I once called friends …” he trailed off. He looked thoroughly distraught at having lost the trust and confidence of his old compatriots. “I’ll visit Elia; she may not like the fact that I have supported the Scarlet Chorus, but I bet she likes the idea of Disfavored staying in her territory less,” I offered. “Maybe she knows a way into the maelstrom.” Mattias, ashamed but hopeful I could finally bring the Edict to an end, bowed and returned to his new Scarlet Chorus allies, who undoubtedly had more “initiation rites” planned for his humiliation. Verse, Balik, Eb, and I turned our attention toward the Rust Canyons, where we hoped to find the Unbroken leader Elia, and gain her aid in breaking through to the citadel.