I’ve gotten some hard looks from the rest of the team as a result of the decision to keep people in the dark until we were underway. Some people might think I was being too cautious or selfish, keeping the information tight, but when your target is a demon with powers of manipulation that are literally the stuff of legends, you don’t risk showing your hand too soon. Frankly, Cowl is too powerful and too nosy to trust, and making unfounded claims to people was a bad idea. We were able to learn for certain what we’re up against by doing a job that we would need to do regardless of which path we chose, and now we’re able to have a conversation outside of Cowl’s den, so to speak. We’d had no luck digging into Cowl’s past, and the stories on the street suggested that looking for that kind of information was a deathwish. I held onto my suspicions until they were confirmed to be truths to keep my friends safe. As the Americans say: “Ignorance is Bliss.”
I hope that Tesa especially understands. Before, we let her down, and she nearly ended up dead. Not only did we desperately need an extra set of skilled hands for this job, but if things went south, I didn’t want to leave my friends in the cold. At least if we’re together, we can watch each others’ backs. Frankly, once we learned the truth about Cowl, our lives were for sale. Cowl wants no one to know his dirty secret, and he would kill anyone in our network whether they knew or not to cover things up on his end. In my book, by bringing the team in, at least I gave them a stake in whether they live or die, and hopefully they get the chance to go on their own terms rather than on Cowl’s. I’d rather die fighting with my friends at my side than get killed in my home one day, unsuspectingly, by a bunch of Vory hitmen once Cowl knows that his dirty little secret is out in the world.
I care personally about everyone on my team. I trust them with my life on a daily basis. I will help them through this or die trying. Further, I don’t trust Cowl. I think he knew that we would put the pieces together eventually, and I am sure he had plans to put us down. What value do the lives of a few runners have compared to preserving the future of Miro Ichi and Cowl’s power play for Southeast Asia? So we’re skilled. To an immortal Demon, everyone is expendable. Cowl changes runners like a model changes dresses. No lamentations. No hesitation. No modesty. I think we’d be dead the moment we left Cowl’s office.
We’re in deep with a Demon. We know the truth about him: this means our death. There’s no way around that now. I’m just looking for the best exit.