One of Hembila’s men has taken it upon himself to antagonize Dionus at every opportunity – above and beyond the petty jabs of his companions. Dionus does what he can to ignore the man, but I thought he would kill him tonight. His name is Kodara.

Two nights ago we ate what looked like a handful of roast geese, though I’m not sure what their proper name is. Dionus was eating the leg of one. Kodara pretended to trip and kicked some dirt and twigs over Dionus’ hands, spattering it with the debris. Dionus picked the meat clean, coldly watching Kodara who feigned an apology then walked away laughing.

This morning Dionus awoke to find his pack soaked in urine. We didn’t see who did it, but every time Kodara walks near us he pantomimes choking on the stink of it. We will have to wash Dionus’ pack thoroughly when we get to another creek. Inifra attempted to offer up an excuse for the incident by explaining that in many places, urine is used as a cleaning agent. She stopped when Dionus’ glower turned to her.

I was thinking about putting Kodara in his place until Dionus opened up to me tonight. “Let them laugh,” he said at last. “They’ll be behind us soon enough.”

I asked if he didn’t want revenge, at the very least to humiliate Kodara? Dionus said no. He wants to let Kodara have his joke. “Let them all have their laugh,” he said. “It proves them the fools. Playing into their games would only make it worse.”

I’m not so easily persuaded. It shocks me to see Dionus contain himself like this, especially considering all I want to do is ram my sword through Kodara’s stomach and watch him choke without the need for mimicry. Even Salisir has been put on edge by the hostilities. If I’ve seen any flicker of uncertainty in the old man’s eyes, it has come when watching to see how Dionus will react to the next affront.

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Will Dionus snap? That is the question I quietly share with Salisir. I do not know the answer. The old Dionus would have responded with his own insults at the very least, or perhaps killed these men right out. This new Dionus is changed. He has some other goal in mind when suffering these fools. I will be happy when we have left them far behind.

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