Chapter 2

"The Drifter wasn't always my target.

"In fact, he only came to my attention when he started running with them I'd call prey.

"Before that he'd existed only as rumor—the strange Lightbearer who journeyed beyond the system's edge, the lone wanderer who was only a 'Guardian' by reductive modern definitions. He had a Ghost. He was touched by the Light. His motivations, though, were his own—some might say selfish, and I'd have to agree. In regard to the concepts of duty and devotion and using one's gifts for the betterment of humanity? Not his play. The City be damned. The Traveler be damned. The Light be damned.

"Which makes his run to the Tower and his newfound benevolence all the more… curious.

"I lost track of him when the Traveler fell silent. Could be that severed connection drew him back. If so, I doubt it's something he'd admit. Yet here he is—unwelcome, but with a gift for persuasion. I can't say it doesn't make me uneasy.

"There was—so we're clear—a time I'd call him a threat. There was a time I'd look to end him as punishment for the paths he'd tread. But things aren't quite so simple these days. Ghaul taught us that. And while I still plan to punish those who have transgressed, I can also see the value in certain… risks.

"This Gambit—the Drifter's strange little game—may just be one such.

"It requires care and a keen eye to ensure the means don't consume the ends, but I got a feeling our new 'friend' might be a necessary catalyst. And, if not…

"He sure makes for a fine cut of bait."

—A Renegade's Observations of a Drifter