Lore Printing Press
Without the ability of eyesight, Lucrèce was suffering. She felt useless, but moreover hopeless. Everything she had been working towards seemed to fall away in almost an instant. No longer could she read. No longer could she partake in archery. No longer could she properly fight or even do simple things like walk down a flight of stairs. She felt crippled, which vaguely reminded her of her father. She checked on the man daily of course, but her interactions with him had grown sparse and over time seemed to lack more and more meaning.
Death was a cruel thing, revival for the unwilling even moreso. She had seen her father as young girl being a bright statesman. Now he was an aging man, reduced to odd sayings while in his bed, incoherence, or even forgetfulness. There were times she had to repeat conversations over and over days in a row only to have him remember bits and pieces of it. He was unable to properly walk for long distances without a severe sense of vertigo. The room had to be kept dark and he couldn't look outside for long without feeling sickly and having to lay back down.
It was hardly a way to live. The way Lucrèce saw it was that he was damned to living, suffering day in and day out and was just as purposeless if not moreso than she. His rule was cut short by his ineptitude to rule, many disliked him throughout the realm and he had made some questionable decisions. Yet she could not help but pity him and his state. Afterall, the man was her father and she loved him deeply. She hated watching him in this state. She thought she was the only one who even thought of him, besides her siblings who were complacent in this suffering and likely to young to remember him capable. She knew her mother was holding onto him tight, unable to let go of her lover even when he was hardly there.
It had to stop, someone had to say no more. Someone had to end the suffering, to give mercy. Lucrèce knew that it was likely no one else would give it to him. They were all selfishly allowing him to live in her eyes. She could only imagine the pain and suffering he endured. Thaddeus too had suffered, and she could only have an inkling of imagination of what that was like. This had been years of issues and only spiraling downwards.
Most deaths happened at night, but Lucrèce went during the day. She had the guards scheduled to be absent from his room at this time, being in other places in the keep. She walked to his room, just the two of them. Lucrèce stepped in, hearing the faint voice of her father. "Lucrèce, what happened to your eyes?" He asked, unable to remember even though he had been told for days at this point. "I lost them Pa, in an accident. It's fine." She said, trying to assuage his worries. "Are you thirsty?" She further asked, going to get his glass of wine and let him sip it. "Thank you." He said with a smile, sipping at the wine before setting it down. "Lucrèce. . . I love you so much. Even if you can't see the beauty of the world- just know the most beautiful thing, is right here," he told her as he held her hand, tapping at her chest. The conversation looped a bit before quieting, Claude having fallen asleep.
It was there the mercy began. A pillow pushed over the face of her father tightly. Jerking and a slight struggle ensued as she kept it pressed against his face. Tears streamed down her face until his last breath slipped from his lips like a cold and hollow wind, his body occasionally twitching before ceasing entirely. She sobbed for a long time, hugging the corpse of her father for sometime, what felt like hours but was assuredly shorter, before leaving his room without a word, without an eye seeing her. That night, the Duval family would learn of his passing, diagnosed by the physician of the keep as peacefully having gone in his sleep. Lucrèce hoped it was the case.