This is going well. I’m two days in, and already I absolutely f*cking hate this particular viewpoint character. I’m going to hate his buddy, too. Which is the plan.
(Isle Royale National Park, Michigan)
Back in his pavilion there was the usual paperwork and nonsense associated with a successful campaign: logistic reports, checklists of objectives, disciplinary actions among the lesser Warmages and their apprentices, and — a message from Grand Moingoana about the salt reserves, marked ‘Immediate Top Interest.’ Firebrand handled that one first, naturally. He had been given a lot of discretion on this campaign, which meant that people back at court were itching at the chance to prove he was unworthy of that kind of trust. They were probably right, too, at least from their point of view. After all, Commanding Warmages were at their most dangerous when fresh off of a successful campaign.
And Firebrand’s conquest of the Great Lakes had been very successful indeed. He hadn’t just beaten the enemy; he had taken them. By now the last of the enemy fighters were being conditioned to servile obedience. There had been even more surrenders than expected. Apparently even mundane bandits will sell their souls to save their drabs and brats, Firebrand thought, and chuckled at the thought. But I mustn’t keep Herself waiting. He activated the crystal ball dedicated for the most rarefied of communications, spoke a certain phrase, and waited.
An image of the Supreme Archmage appeared in the ball within half a minute. Ah, thought Firebrand, she was waiting for news, but knows better than to jiggle a wizard’s elbow while he’s casting. And since a direct message from the Supreme Archmage always had to be answered right now, sending a trivial order at an absurdly high priority level had to suffice as a subterfuge and sop to her dignity.
There were times, Firebrand mused, when one wondered how the Dominion ever got anything done quickly.