Journal of Tora Caderyn, May 12th 314 of the 5th era.
Where to start? The plan to draw the bandits into our trap went off well, though not without great risk to Liam and his mounted men. He did admirably, and I believe the men trust him now more than ever. There is no higher praise than loyalty.
As for my own part in the battle, I am ashamed to write it even here; I was captured and threatened with violence of a most disturbing nature which while not surprising, was still disheartening. I had yielded in the hopes of saving Aden, and in that, I was successful.
During my captivity, I felt an almost overwhelming fear, to be violated is a fate worse than death, and my body is exhausted with the effort I put into escape. And yet, I find my mind questioning myself and my choices and the all the choices I will ever make. Varn took my choices away, cowardly though he was, I was at his mercy, helpless even. An unwelcome feeling, to be sure, but one that I have often felt even at home in court. What choices have I ever truly had? Even my husband will likely be chosen by my father. I thank the gods every day that he has found no match for me. And I ask the gods every day that they release my sister from the bonds our father has placed on her. She is but a child, and in the face of these men who would use her as currency, a payment for services, she is as helpless as I was at the hands of the bandits. My father acts as if his hands are tied too, but he benefits from the match much more than Yori. I would do anything to save my sister, but again, I am helpless.
Our bodies, these vessels, do we not deserve a say in who uses them? Do I not, by simply inhabiting my body, have full rights over it? And if those rights are ours, if we are to own ourselves, then the choice to use my body in any capacity should be mine and mine alone.
I care less about my own fate, my duty has been made clear to me many times, though my heart aches at the thought of losing my marshal position. I have found joy in waking early, in the practice yard, in giving orders. More joy than I have ever gained from a new dress or handsome face. It will break my heart to leave my men, Ripper especially is of a good character despite what some call his "disadvantages."