The city-state of Sidham has long been ruled by a family of the same name. They even survived the Turning, when the world literal shattered. What the Sidham family could not survive was the Temple of the Cleansing Flame in the area. The charismatic Confessor William Dovas turned the people against the family, and had them ell executed, leaving the Temple in charge of the city. The city-state became theocratic, following the tenets of the church and imprisoning those not human.
Of course, others in the city were not happy with this change. They will hire anyone who shares their hatred of the Temple, who also has the skills to do something about it.The prisoner lay perfectly still as the door to his cell opened, no longer possessing the energy to show fear. The light blinded him momentarily as it poor in through the open door. Not that he needed to see who came in anymore. He knew it was the Confessor, ready for the new act of torture he claimed was for his own good.
The new look in the Confessor's eyes is what changed the prisoner's demeanor finally. It was not the usual 'sorrow' had what he was about to do. This time, the man's eyes matched the fire he stood for, tempering the steel that was his resolve.
"You will not tell us where your friends are, that much is certain. I admire your resolve and your courage. Were it only for a worthier cause, it would be worth true respect. Since you will not tell us what we wish to know, and you will not beg forgiveness, you force our hand. We shall cleanse the impurities from your body with holy fire, and pray you are born again as one of us, one of the pure. A human."
The half-elf prisoner wanted to scream, but all he could muster was a whimper.