Amon never really condoned murder.
People, you see, are resources – replaceable resources, yes – but still resources. Needlessly killing a person before getting full use of such a resource was a sad waste.
The Elezen mulled through such dour topics as he peered over the rail of the ship that was taking them from Shirogane back to Eorzea. He watched the parting of the filthy, bio-infected ocean waters sifting around the base of the ship with a shudder.
This was all Scylla’s fault.
She, or some reasonable facsimile of Scylla – he wasn’t sure which quite yet, had to waltz into this quiet life he was building, tempt him with some crazy new scheme, and get him on the path that would take him back into the dark shadows of his past. And now, memories he’d rather have left back in the Tower were boiling below the surface, threatening to suffocate him.
For that reason, Amon kept his distance from her as much as he could. The last thing he needed was his own dark anger surfacing in front of Scylla and ruining the best chance he had at restoring his dreams.
So far, she’d dismissed his eccentricity as simply being a weird Bard. This was something he chose to encourage. It gave him a cover for when his true emotions threatened to seep out the cracks that were forming in his mask.
His time was short. He was patient, but even so, he did not count on the magnitude of his own emotions to deceive him. And in this world, he had nothing to dull these feelings.
It really was all Scylla’s fault.
Amon had chosen thieves, murderers, turncoats, prisoners of war, and the scum of the Empire – Allag was no Utopia, there was still crime to be found there – as his earliest human test subjects. Low-life creatures that did nothing but weigh down the glory of what their society could have been.
If anything, he did everyone a favor in repurposing these individuals. They went from being a burden on the Empire to contributing to high science and progressing the search for immortality. Everything he did, after all, was to bring a higher quality of life to the fine citizens of Allag and to further the power and reach of their nation.
Sure, there were a few losses. This was to be expected.
Sometimes the subject did not live through the treatment. Other times, critical failure resulted in a situation where the subject had outlived its usefulness and Amon had to put it out of its misery. He was not completely unmerciful, after all.
The death of a few to further the progress of the whole was acceptable. Especially when the advancement of clones meant that he could conduct more focused, controlled tests rather than relying on the unwashed criminal populace for his specimen stock.
That wasn’t murder, however.
No. There was only one case… one situation… that he had unwashable blood on his hands. When he was forced to vote to take the life of one person who had once meant the world to him.
Amon had been backed into a corner. He had no other choice but to make the vote.
There had been wolves waiting at the door, looking to help expedite his downfall. Had he hesitated to convict a criminal of their crimes, suspicion would have been cast at his feet, and he would have been branded a traitor to the Empire.
Even his head wasn’t exempt from the chopping block.
The worst part was… Clio knew. She knew he cast the vote. And she would go to her death seeing him as the monster he really had become.
He rightfully blamed himself for her execution, tormented endlessly.
Someone dropped him the information that Scylla had been a key player in securing the capture of Clio to begin with.
Then, it all fell into place.
If not for Scylla, Clio might have never been found and captured. She wouldn’t have been condemned to death. He would not have been backed into the corner to make the vote that took her life.
He wouldn’t be the murderer he was today.
The Elezen felt his fists ball at his sides.
History tells the tale of how mad, mad Amon tricked poor unassuming Scylla with the temptations of eternal life. But instead of giving her what she desired, he transformed her into a monstrosity created from the tainted crevices of his mind.
The stories forget to ask why, though.
Even madness has its reasons.
And even then, murder was not an option. It was far more satisfying to strip her of her beauty and influence and reduce her into the monstrous form that her actions had created within him. If he was to fall into utter madness, he would take her down with him.
Amon blinked, shaking off the hazy fury of his past life. The waters continued to move under their ship, carrying him closer to his destination.
Now… he must not hesitate to do whatever needed to be done, no matter the cost to either of them. He was fairly certain this would all pan out in his advantage.
At that thought, a slow smile slipped over his face.