said about the eyes being the window of the soul...? No matter, he decided. They understood one another.
The ride back to the capital seemed shorter and less odious than the ride out, even with the presence of the Keeper intruding into his thoughts from time to time.
She is still a potential threat, the voice whispered in his thoughts.
True, but she has been publicly discredited. No one will listen to her now. She is far from the palace, and will never be allowed closer, so your secret is safe. You should be reasonable. Even you cannot eliminate all of the potential threats.
Not today, perhaps, the Drakh sent back, but there is still tomorrow.
Yes, Londo thought, there is always tomorrow.
* * *
Upon arriving back at the royal palace, after his briefing from Minister Vole, Londo returned to his suite, where he found a letter waiting for him. Though he had not seen her handwriting before, he knew even before opening it that it came from Shiri.
Thank you, the note read. There is no gift that would be the equal of the one you have given me: my freedom, and the restoration of my father's House. So I give you the only thing I have to give, the last prophecy I intend to make.
One day, Emperor, you will be free of your burden. One day you will save our people, and all the sacrifices you make will not have been in vain.
Londo set the note down again and looked out at his dear city, framed by scaffolding, climbing its way back from the horrors of war, and was surprised to find tears running down his face.
* * *
The dream was the same. It was always the same.
The chakat lay on the ground before him, its four legs bound by ropes, horns scratching the dry ground beneath its head. The sun was hot overhead.
A voice, always the same