The Solars deal with the aftermath of their brief encounter with Deep Fury and steel themselves for the return of Tepet Exquisite Tide.

“Whether they choose to discover information… or end people….

Back safely in the manse, Valeria’s first order of business is to heal Tai-La: removing the artifact spear from Tai-La’s body that was keeping her alive, she heals the woman’s wounds. Knowing she won’t be up for some time, Jorek heads outside to speak with Rey, on watch. After the events of the day before, Rey tells Jorek how incredibly confused she is feeling about her mother’s death. Jorek jokes about using his newfound Fae powers to relieve her suffering through pleasure, but has to backpedal pretty quickly when Rey takes it the wrong way.

Jorek heads back inside and suggests Ember join Rey: the Dawn asks the Terrestrial about Tepet Deep Fury, her mother. Ember recalls her as very ambitious: she was a “deal closer”, a Terrestrial with a huge network of informants and allies… and so it seems unlikely her death will go without notice. Rey also admits to him that while everything did work out, she knows that Valeria attacked Deep Fury knowing full well that Alvor might have been killed in the process. “A wound like this will only fester,” Ember tells her; is it better for Rey to confront Val?

Valeria and Speaks-of-Silence take some time to speak about home, and how, even knowing that her sister in on her way to Nexus, Valeria no longer considers her village home. At that moment, Tai-La wakes up, and the two women leave Jorek alone with her to reconnect. Jorek tries to catch Tai-La up on everything that has happened since they last saw each other, including his exaltation, their adventures, their enemies… and Sola’s death. Tai-La takes the news much better than Jorek expected, as her relationship with her daughter is only one of mild curiousity, he discovers. Jorek believes Sola was worth more than that, and works to instill a new feeling in Tai-La of loving memory towards their daughter.

It is at this moment that Exquisite Tide’s ship is spotted. Ember heads back into the manse to protect the non-combatants, and the four Solars step out to confront her. Sliding across the river on a sheet of ice, Tide immediately grovels at Rey’s feet, seeking penitence. Her mother’s agents, it seems, tried to get her and Hope both hooked on the red crystal drug. Tide, though, has a new goal in life: protecting Rey with every ounce of strength that she can muster. “I know what I’m going to do with my life.”

Suddenly, a dark cloud begins to roll in on a calm, warm day… the Deathlord may be returning!

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