The Bard gave Emi's hand a slight and hesitant squeeze, along with a smile. "Thank you for the vote of confidence," she told the Reaver amiably, "but, whether I'm the leader or not, I'm afraid we'll have to make a decision if we're going to outrun the Purge. As for you, Akeirra..." She trailed off. "I have never heard of this Network or the Spy from Nowhere, except in rumors about town spoken in dingy taverns. If you speak the truth, then apparently those rumors have some veracity. For all I know, you could be a spy for the Purge itself, although I sense none of the..." She was about to say mark of dragon's blood, but revealing that piece of information would betray V'toryv and the secret Per'dra had sworn to the Elf to keep. Coughing, she continued:
"As I was saying, I sense absolutely none of the aura that surrounds any member loyal to the Purge. It's a pull of subtle strength and power, much like the force found in iron ore which makes compasses point. Also, the more people that they kill, the stronger their bodies become. If they take prisoners and convert them, however, their souls absorb the converts' 'fifth essence', the ability that gives them the power to make decisions freely. It's a terrible fate for a Purge captive either way. In regards to this pervasive aura..."
Blinking, Per'dra let her mind slip into the vastness and beauty of the universe.
"If I suspected that you had it...I'd kill you. Not even Emi, the Reaver by my side, has full control over the power she wields. It grieves her, I do believe."
Stepping back, she raised her head and said: "Despite the fact that none of us, including myself, trust you completely, we do need a guide through this forest if we're going to find the Auris River again and get off the Cherna. I know next to nothing about this territory, because I fear the Dark Elves. It's no use to any of us if we go tromping through the brush and trees not knowing whither we wander! Besides, I think that for saving Tael's life, we shouldn't leave you here to be ambushed or slain by the Purge. Thus--"
She took a deep breath. "At least for right now, welcome aboard, Akeirra."