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She does her best not to stare. Warrior training has its advantages, and one is learning how to suck up the pain, bear with it like a true Stoic. But despite her innocent appearance, the woman sitting across the fire from her is personally responsible for the deaths of thousands -- many of them her fellow Amazons. And no matter how it comes packaged, Varia can't begin to comprehend this whole forgiveness kick everyone seems to be on these days. The hot new philosophy making the rounds.

"You didn't have to let me stay." Eve meets her gaze through the flames. "I could have gone with them --"

A dry chuckle emerges from Varia's throat before she can help herself. "Pretty sure they wanted to be alone."

Eve pulls her meager robe about her shoulders, a hint of a gleam in her own eye. "Sure you didn't just want me all to yourself?"

"As if." Varia pokes at the coals with a stick. "I may be leader of a dying tribe, but I'm not that hard up."

Eve doesn't respond. Varia looks up to see her staring off into the darkness of the forest.

"They're not coming back." Varia can't help a smile as she amends her statement. "Not tonight, anyway."

"I know."

She contemplates the figure before her. Eve sits perched on a fallen tree, one leg crossed over the other, her graceful feet impractically bare apart from a silver ring adorning her second leftmost toe.

"What's that?"

Eve frowns, looking back at Varia, then down at her foot. "Just a reminder."

Varia raises an inquisitive eyebrow. "For what?"

"That there are people worth caring about."

Taken aback, Varia retreats into silence.

The crackle of fire is enough to fill the space between them, and she finds herself lulled into relaxation. Until she catches herself admiring the interplay of light and shadow, the way that gauzy fabric becomes almost transparent at the right angle. Thinking again about the fun Eve's two mothers are no doubt getting up to at this exact moment.

"I'll --" Eve clears her throat. "I'll get more wood."

Varia looks back, fighting a twitch of her lip. "For the fire."

"Yeah." Eve quickly gathers her robe and rises, disappearing into the forest before Varia can protest. She breathes a sigh of relief, even as she knows it won't last long.

Stoic, she reminds herself. Just be like the little Spartan boy. Except having her vitals gnawed out?

Might be the lesser evil.