“Zaile, … you’re willing to sacrifice Lexx’s life for your sister,.. and you don’t even know where she is?” Riley pointed out.

“Lexx- is a lost cause, Riley.” Zaile snorted derisively. “He’s only been trained for the game. That is all that he is and will be, a game piece. What is he going to do when it’s over,.. tell me, Riley?” Zaile followed up his argument. “What kind of future will he have? The circuits? What kind of a future is that?”

“He could,.. I don’t know,… Live?” Riley felt a twinge of irritation at the entire conversation. This was someone’s life they were playing with. Someone that Riley actually cared about. Riley wasn’t one to take friendship lightly and now he was in a situation that was very difficult for him all the way around. If he stepped out of the loop, he wouldn’t be able to keep tabs on Lexx, but as it was, Lexx was going to be used and Riley would have a hand in it. For Lexx’s good, Riley would compromise his morals,… even if it meant coming across as betraying Lexx. Zaile had plans for Lexx,.. but Riley had other plans to make sure his friend would not come out as the ultimate loser.

“On what money?” Zaile continued. “The investors are the only ones who really profit. Even on the circuits, you know that’s where the money goes.” Zaile emphasized the word, even. “EVEN, the most successful eventually outlive their usefulness and are discarded. They’re only led to think they’re rich. They don’t know how the world truly works. They’re very naïve.”

The circuits. They looked good on the outside. The sentient dice players that made it there had representatives. The representatives took care of everything,… until the players started losing, then,.. accidents would befall them. Zaile would have nothing to do with the circuit reps. He had his limits.

“You’re an investor,…” Riley pointed out dryly.