To Business

The cool night air was refreshing as he stepped out of the shadows and into a wide deserted parking lot. There were no cars and the only streetlamp flickered and died out. Wind blew, it seemed, from every direction and tousled his long, brown hair. Nothing else stirred.

"Kyrin!" Airedale yelled into the empty lot. His eyes flew across the lot, looking for any movement at all and rested on a small garbage can near the corner of a building wall. Airedale started to walk lazily over. As he was doing so, a coin flopped onto the ground just beside the garbage can. It whizzed into the air and slowly turned three times then landed heads up, the signal that Kyrin was not alone. 

Airedale stopped and tucked his hand into a satchel hanging at his side, gripping a small metal object. Cautiously, he stepped forward and leaned over to pick up the coin. Standing up brought a surprise as several people stood in front of him, all wearing scuffed clothes and a silver ear ring in the left ear, their gang symbol. All of them wore these things except one, near the far right side and behind the garbage can. One of the tallest of the group stepped forward, his left palm absentmindedly holding a single flame. A smirk touched his lips as he brought the hand to his lips and kissed the delicate source of heat.

"So, Airedale," His tone, as he said Airedale's name, deeply gratified the hatred that was held toward him, "did you finish it?" The flame caressed the gang leader's cheek as if it were alive and in love with him. Airedale didn't move anything but his eyes toward the man near the garbage can and subtly winked. 

"Yes, Limphias, I did. In four days time, you will go to the Keron City Subway. You will ask for a man named Joe. He will lead you to an opening in the gates, allowing you to freely roam Ingosea as you wish. Now, to the delicate subject of payment, and put the flame away before I do myself." Airedale suddenly straightened to his full height and pushed just a bit on Limphias' mind. In Limphias' eyes, Airedale seemed to grow taller and taller, his shadow going on forever into the night. Smiling, Airedale remembered the first time he realized how persuasive he could actually be.

~~~~~~~~~~

The night of his first Festival at age ten, Airedale was running through the caravan trying to get closer to the lights and dancing people. Tom, one of the men Airedale thought of as a father, took his arm to stop his progress. 

"Calm down boy. We will get there soon enough, no need to cause more distress..." Tom's voice faltered and broke off. His eyes slightly glazed over and he let go of the boy. Airedale had stared at his strange behavior but didn't think of it any longer and instead started his heated journey to the lights and music once again. Suddenly the Grand Master of Festival was standing in front of him, telling him in a booming voice for the rest of the crowd to hear that he had finally received his first power; the power of persuasion. From then on, Airedale referred to his strongest spell as a push since he literally pushed on the mind of his victim to make them do what he wants them to do. By doing this, he also can put images into the targets mind and making them to see things that aren't real. 

~~~~~~~~~~

Limphias stared at Airedale's towering figure, it was however the only thing he could see. Without warning, Airedale reached forward with the hand not in his satchel and touched the flame. Somehow, the flame was sucked into Airedale's finger. With horror, Limphias tried to re-light another of his precious flames. Nothing. He couldn't feel it's power, it's warm caress. This was the only spell he had and this man had taken that from him! Airedale smiled and slowly stepped back again, releasing his control over Limphias' mind. 

All of the men around them had backed away, yelling. A few had spells circling their bodies and flying through the air, but most just stood there in complete awe that their fearless leader had been overcome by some poor freelancer. Limphias turned and screamed for the briefcase.

"It's all in their, every last bit. I swear, please, I beg of you." Airedale took the weighted briefcase and dropped it to the ground. He then raised his free fist in the air and opened it. A small flame ignited in his palm. Limphias stared in so much fear that even as Airedale stepped so close as to breath on his ear, he did not move. 

"Just touch the fork and begone." Airedale whispered then handed Limphias the small fork that he was holding. The second Limphias touched the object, his wonderful heat embraced his soul once more. Airedale laughed once again as Limphias and the rest took off in different directions, their feet slapping against the wet, dark pavement. 

Only one stayed behind, a wide grin plastered upon his pale face. Airedale turned to him and winked. "Oh Kyrin, you need to leave these wimps behind and become something great like me!"

The End

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