The Count of Larek was a large, brute man who looked anything but graceful as he lumbered over the chessboard in the study. His face was ruddy and blushed from the several glasses of wine he had already consumed on this night.
Kyra studied the man from the frame of the partially opened door as he had not yet noticed her. She clutched the bottle of wine she carried tighter as she tried to reign on her own anger. The Count of Larek always wore an unpleasant scowl. Sober, he was an insufferable man and drunk he was a raving lunatic.
Kyra watched in astonishment as the Count played an intense game of chess with an imaginary friend. Several times he accused the air of cheating. One time he even got so mad that he flipped the chess board and its pieces over, ending the game entirely. That was when he noticed the figure in the doorway.
“Geneva?” The Count growled. “That wine you are holding?” He called as he took a hefty swig from his mug and slammed it back down on the chess table. He leaned back in his chair, looking very smug and intoxicated.
Kyra stepped into the light of the room. The count tilted his head. He was obviously not as drunk as she had thought he would be at this point, but his reaction time was still off.
“You. Aren’t. Geneva.” He determined after half a minute’s pause.
Kyra smiled sweetly in response. “My. What a big estate you have here. Tell me, do you make a point in remembering all of your servant’s names. There seems to be so many.”
The Count glanced up as she neared him. He was seeing double now. He reached out to touch her silky hair. To him it was not more than a blur of shiny copper. He stopped himself upon noticing her reproachful look. Then he remembered her question. “Why no. I do not remember all of their names. Only the ones I whore around with. So you must tell me yours.”
That was the last bit of motivation Kyra needed. In a quick motion she swung the glass bottle at the edge of the chess table. Aged wine and splinters of glass shot down onto the floor. She pointed the jagged end of the wine bottle at the Count of Larek. With the hand clutching the paper note, she pulled the collar of her blouse away from her neck. A newer scar was revealed from the length of her shoulder to her collar bone. “Can you put a name to my face now, Larek?”
The Count’s eyes were wide with shock. The pallor of his skin became ashen. His jaw trembled as he struggled to form words and access his own magic. Luckily for Kyra the alcohol had hindered him from doing the later.
“B-Bane. Bane’s daughter!” The count spat.
Kyra kicked up her leg so that the foot of her boot landed on the Count’s seat, just between his parted legs. He cringed at the gesture. “Your boss thought he killed me, didn’t he?” When she received no answer Kyra stomped her foot down hard on the chair, close enough to the Count’s body to cause him a great deal of anguish. “I said ‘didn’t he?” Larek!”
“Y-yes.” The count replied hurriedly. He averted his eyes from her boot.
-“Where is my talisman?”
The count shook his head. “I don’t have it!”
-“Well who does?!”
The count cringed again as the broken bottle grazed the skin on his neck. “Please have mercy on me daughter of Bane.”
Kyra pressed the jagged bottle into the Count’s skin, only piercing it enough to draw blood. He grew very still and silent. She leaned in closer and whispered into his ear. “Sure thing Love. I’ll show you the same kind of mercy that you bestowed upon my father, deal?
The Count quickly sobered up. She moved the bottle away from his throat, just enough so that he could speak. “ I get it. I get it. The Count of Bristol has it. He has your necklace. Please lemme go!"
Kyra narrowed her eyes and pursed her lips in mock presentation of deep thought.” Hmmm. No.”
“What?” The Count of Larek looked up. The scowl was replaced with confusion.
“My answer. Its no,” She explained lightly before throwing the broken bottle and grabbing a concealed short sword from her boot simultaneously.
The Count of Larek’s last scream caught in his throat as Kyra stuck him with enough force to pierce through flesh and arteries. She pulled the short sword out of him abruptly and kicked the corpse and chair away from her. She sighed. She hoped to avoid a messy kill. In fact that led to her decision to switch from the jagged edged bottle to her short sword at the last second. But now it looked like she would have to steal another garment before fleeing the estate. Luckily the walls in the castle were heavy and she was stealthy enough not to wake the rest of the household.
Before leaving the room she unfolded her note. She glanced at the list she had written earlier that day. “A mercenary’s job is never done,” she muttered with resentment.