Galaxi and Crescent stopped walking and looked at the direction of the commotion. A crowd was gathering, but they were able to see a man with black hair and tearful blue eyes on his knees, begging with a Scythian. His clothes were dirty and ragged so he could only be a slave. The Scythian, his body covered with reptilian scales that glinted in the sunlight, stood like a giant over the mortal, with his sword aloft.
"I'm sorry, so sorry! I didn't mean to do it, honestly! Please, don't kill me!" The man pleaded again. Then he turned and saw the twins watching. His eyes widened in recognition and shone with a little hope. He lifted a hand to gesture them and began to cry again. "Your Highnesses, please spare me from death!"
Crescent, being the elder one, beckoned the Scythian to approach him. The reptilian man sheathed his sword and came over to him. Crescent then looked at the slave, who was quietly sobbing and suddenly he was filled with pity. But he had to know what had happened. "Tell me, what crime did he commit?"
The Scythian spoke in a hissing language only the Royal like him and Galaxi can understand. "I caught him stealing fruits from the marketplace, my lord."
The place had gone completely silent. Crescent and Galaxi looked at each other.
Then without even saying a word, they came to an understanding. Crescent opened his mouth, about to let him escape with his life when a powerful gust of wind swept out of nowhere.
"The Law is the Law." A voice spoke first behind the twins. Everyone gasped except the Scythian, who only respectfully bowed as the Lord Khraim himself appeared. He laid a hand on Crescent's shoulder and the boy closed his mouth and shamefully lowered his head.
Lord Khraim glared coldly at the slave, who was now shivering, his last bit of hope shattered. "If you steal, you pay the price." The king murmured at him. He raised his head and looked around at the crowd, "And you all know what the price is." His lips curved into a humorless smile.
"But, Father, it was only a few fruits!" Galaxi stepped forward, trying to reason with him. Crescent shot her a look, warning her to keep quiet, but it was too late. Lord Khraim rounded on his daughter and his eyes blazed with anger.
"Nevertheless it was stealing. And stealing is against the Law, Galaxi. No one must interfere with It. What It says is what the mortals have to follow. And if they don't, well....they chose their ending." He looked hard at her pale, frightened face. "Do you understand?"
Galaxi nodded. "Y-yes, Father."
"Good." He looked at the Scythian and said something in their hissing language.
Without even a moment's hesitation, the Scythian unsheathed his sword and brought it down on the man. Blood spilled out, forming a pool on the cement ground. The man fell, immediately lifeless, a look of fear still drawn across his face.
A ripple of shock went through the crowds. Galaxi sobbed. Crescent awkwardly hugged her. "It's okay, Galaxi, it's okay."
But he knew it wasn't.
Lord Khraim studied his children. "I expect you to be more than this." He growled. "You are going to rule The Refuge after me, so you must rule like me."