Chapter 24

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Chapter 24

Post by Freakzilla »

My father once told me that respect for the truth comes close to being the basis
for all morality. "Something cannot emerge from nothing," he said. This is
profound thinking if you understand how unstable "the truth" can be.

-from "Conversations with Muad'Dib" by the Princess Irulan

Hawat and his remaining men are hiding in the rocks near a sink. Howat's mind is still reeling from the sheer size of the attack. He blames himself for undersetimating what the Baron was willing to spend. Profits from fifty years of harvesting spice would barely cover the transportation costs. He's convinced the traitor was Jessica. A Fremen crosses the sink, he reports that Halleck and some of his men are safe with the smugglers. Hawat had started the night with 300 of his finest men, now only twenty remain and half of them are wounded. Hawat asks if the Fremen can help his wounded, the Fremen tells him it is a water matter, how many of his wounded would he spend. Hawat says he speaks for his Duke and offers a promissary payment for his help. He wants to be relieved of his wounded so he can fight the Harkonnens. The Fremen says the wounded are their own responsibility, it's their water that's at stake. He says to put the question to them, a man should know when he is worth saving. He tells Hawat that the Duke is dead and fate of the Lisan-al-gaib is in Liet's hands. The Fremen asks about the artillery, he tells Hawat that men who back into a cave with no way out deserve to die and they have captured one of the guns. Hawat is shocked, there were Sardaukar at every gun and the Fremen only lost two men agains two-hundred, not only that, they captured three and sent them to be questioned by Liet. Hawat asks again about Paul and tells the Freman that he is pledged to Paul's water, as they speak one of Hawat's men dies. The Fremen says it's a sign, a water bond, their tribes are joined. The Fremen take the dead man away and some of Hawat's troopers are upset, they know what the Fremen do with the dead. Hawat explains that they're not buying the Fremen's help, their joining their tribe. Hawat and his men watch while the Fremen ambush some Sardaukar in the basin, capture and take off in their thopter. Another troop carrier thopter lands and the Fremen in the captured thopter dive straight into it. The Fremen decides it's time to go and as he steps out, Sardaukar in Harkonnen blue decend on suspensors in front of the entrance. A thrown knife catches the Fremen in the throat. Hawat had time only to draw his knife before a stunner knocked him out.
They were destroyed because they lied pretentiously. Have no fear that my wrath
will fall upon you because of your innocent mistakes.

~Leto II, God Emperor
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