Nicky: Booker was the last: 1812. Nile: No way. Booker: Yeah, I died fighting with Napoleon. Nile: So... you're even older... than him. Joe: Nicky and I met in the Crusades. Nile: The Crusades?! Nicky: The love of my life was of the people I've been taught to hate. Joe:[laughing] We, we killed each other. Nicky: Many times. Nile:[to Andy] You're the oldest. [Andy nods] Well, how old are you? Andy:[Beat] Older.
I have had a long talk with the Count. I asked him a few questions on Transylvanian history, and he warmed up to the subject wonderfully. In his speaking of things and people, and especially of battles, he spoke as if he had been present at them all.
"My injuries? My pain? Hah! When I wore the dragonhelm and got a lance through my visor, which broke the bridge of my nose, shot through and smashed out the back of my skull, that was pain! Pain, aye, for part of me the real ME had been hurt. That was Silistria, where we crushed the Ottoman. Oh, I know pain, my friend. We are old, old acquaintances, pain and I. In 1204 at Constantinople it was Greek fire. I had joined the Fourth Crusade in Zara, as a mercenary, and was burned for my trouble at the height of our triumph! Ah, but didn't we make them pay for it? For three whole days we pillaged, raped, slew. And I in my agony, half eaten away, burned through almost to the very heart of ME I was the greatest slayer of all! The human flesh had shriveled, but the Wamphyri lived on!"
"You think yourself old. I ate of sacrifical children on the altars of Arcadia before even Europe came to be, before that tricksy carpenter of Bethlehem died to conjure a new god for the nations to come. The sons of Lycaon himself split my soul in two long before this shape you wear was spewed into existence."
Polgara: I was happy here. The walls were high, and the towers soared. We all thought it would last forever. Over there was a flower-filled garden where ladies in pale yellow dresses used to sit while young men sang to them from beyond the garden wall. The voices of the young men were very sweet, and the ladies would sigh and throw bright red roses over the wall to them. And down that avenue was a marble-paved square where the old men met to talk of forgotten wars and long-gone companions. Beyond that there was a house with a terrace where I used to sit with friends in the evening to watch the stars come out while a boy brought us chilled fruit and the nightingales sang as if their hearts were breaking. But then the Asturians came. You'd be surprised at how little time it takes to tear down something that took a thousand years to build ... I didn't think the trees would come back so fast. I thought they might have waited a little longer. Belgarath: It's been almost twenty-five centuries, Pol. Polgara: Really? It seems like only last year.
I wish I could trust you, I really do. But everything is in far too delicate a state at the moment. I think it was twenty thousand years ago, give or take, that I decided the little details weren't worth bothering with. Ended up being thrown in a volcano for my sloppiness. Let me tell you, Mr Dionysus, there's nothing like having to claw and scrape your way through a sea of molten lava to remind one to keep an eye on the details.