I am in a bit of a quandary of late. Though the alliance seems to be working so far, there are still many concerns I have that need voicing. And seeing that I dislike confronting others over trifling things, I thought I would get them all out here. It was good to see that the meeting welt as well as it did, and I think it surprised more than a few when Piper was named to lead any military efforts against the Hand. This is a good choice seeing that not only does she had the discipline and training needed, but she is also well liked by most of the people she will lead. Even Dramora agreed that this was the only logical choice. And speaking of Dramora, she recently left the safety of my house and has opted to stay elsewhere while deciding what she might do next. She seems torn between staying to help, and leaving. As she stated, Yew is no longer her home. But I had do disagree with her assessment of the readiness of those assembling to confront the Hand. Granted, some of them are brash and quick to action. But I can remember a time years back when Dramora would have been among the first to draw steel. It may not have been the best idea I have come up with, but I could not help telling her that I was thinking of handing the Rest over to Mikael. I never really had any intention of doing so, but I knew telling her that might piss her off. ……It worked. The Yew city meeting was not so much a meeting but was intended to show some force to the Hand. I had assumed they would show up, which they did while I was there alone. I made a grave error that night in going inside the Abbey before the others arrived. While sitting in the meeting room, with several of Mikaels people there including Omen, members of the alliance arrived. It was at this time that Eban recognized one of the members as an undead creature that he had seen during an attack elsewhere. He confronted the person, and before I knew it a fight ensued. Several were hurt, and the numbers we had there, the Hand was subdued quickly. Where this might have any other time elated me, I could not get over the fact that my carelessness had allowed blood to be spilled within the Abbey. The brothers were not very happy, and have asked that I do not hold any further meetings within the walls for now. I will of course honor their request. In our last talk before she moved out Dramora said something that is very true. The Hand cannot be defeated by strength of arms alone. Some tact and finesse must be used in dealing with them. And given the time and perhaps the Knights of Yew back in Aegis we could wear them down, arrest them and put them on trial. But we no longer have the luxury of working with a force that knows their every move, and we cannot ask those who are being attacked in their outposts, or are finding their citizens butchered to stay their hands and hope that justice can prevail. The one thing I am asked time and again is where Gillian is in all this. Well, Gillian has her reasons for not being in the open at this time, and I am sure that she is working on some things behind the scene. In the meantime she has appointed Thom to lead the military aspects for Yew and he is the representative charged to confer with the Alliance leader Piper. As for me, I am tired of wearing armor. I have never cared for the stuff. It causes me to sweat like a bear and after a few hours in it I reek. I am not a military man. I have always preferred to settle things with words and compromise on both sides rather than resorting to fighting. But for now, I will play the hand which I was dealt, and do all I can to support those who are lending their aid and comfort to the city I love. The Hand are ruthless, this is what I must keep instilling in the hearts of those who will oppose them. But I also know this, and will keep it to myself. Mikael has a love for the Yew area that runs deep. And in many ways, his claims on the area ring true. He defended the town long before I came to live here, but his defense was through intimidation and terror. Taxes and tributes paid in crops and livestock. I suppose we all do what we can in the way we best know how to do so.