Deadrick instinctively grabbed for his gun- unsheathing it, he moved to attack the assassin- not wanting to give him the advantage he had before.
But when he looked again, the assassin had his hands up to his chest, his long, almost clawed fingers splayed out towards Deadrick.
“Wait,” Came a raspy voice from within the hood.
Deadrick moved his finger from the trigger, but he didn’t lower the gun.
“Do not shoot,”
“Give me one goddamn reason why I shouldn’t,” Deadrick growled.
The tension in the room was thick, so thick you could cut it with a knife.
“I do not want to engage in combat with you, even if the outcome would be… interesting,” The assassin told him, his hands were lowered now, but he stayed in a neutral stance- staring down Deadrick’s gun.
The wind whistled slightly through the open roof, the circles on the floor below seemed to flicker slightly.
“You are Shaduri,” Deadrick finally said.
The assassin nodded, “Yes,”
Deadrick had discovered this when he saw the tattoo on the assassin’s head, he’d finally remembered it to be the universal sign of the formation of assassins known as the Shaduri.
Mainlanders only knew the Shaduri in stories, stories of men and women from all over being initiated because of their talents. The tales would speak of them disappearing in the night- disappearing to the order’s temple on an island far north.
There, it is said, they distort and deform their bodies with powerful Demonic energies, increasing their strength and speed five-fold.
They were hired for huge amounts of money for more high profile jobs, such as political assassinations.
“Do you have a name?” Deadrick asked.
The assassin seemed to think for a minute.
“We give our names to the Darklords when we are initiated into the Order, but I go by Garum when a name is required,”
“Who sent you?” Deadrick asked. He was unsure of what to do now, Garum didn’t look in any way poised to attack, but he was obviously fast.
“A Witch gave me a bag of coins, your description and told me her master required me to do it,” Garum explained. Deadrick couldn’t help but imagine that forked tongue of his flitting about as he spoke.
“Why haven’t you killed me yet, then?”
“The Witch did not tell me how powerful you were,” Garum explained, his raspy voice echoing in the large room, “It was only when I attacked that I realized the power that lies within you,”
Deadrick remembered the glass plating over the assassin’s eye- with the mini storm of magic inside it.
“Allows me to see inside people- their life, some memories, some fears- I can gauge someone almost perfectly just by looking at them,”
Deadrick was listening, contemplating lowering his gun, but his arm stayed rigid.
“When I saw inside you, I hesitated,” Garum explained.
“And then you ran,” Deadrick said bluntly.
“Assassins have no honor or loyalty, and if I deem a target too dangerous, then no amount of money is enough,”
Deadrick looked at Garum intently for a moment, and then lowered his gun.
“So, what now, you just disappear?” Deadrick asked.
Garum tilted his head slightly.
“I contemplated just killing your traveling companions, but the Witch made it clear that you were my main target. I suppose I may as well disappear,”
The two of them stood silent for a moment, Deadrick sheathed his gun.
“Are you aware of what is happening, in the Citadel,” He finally said.
Garum gave a small nod, and for the first time Deadrick noticed the faint glow inside his hood from the glass plate.
“I have heard things. Through the Ecrid in the air… the Unholy speaking to one another, they’re almost ready,”
“Surely they pose a threat to you… like they do to everyone. Running won’t save you from this,” Deadrick told him, feeling Garum’s good eye watching him, “Will you fight?”
Garum only shrugged slightly.
“I prefer to be on the winning team,” The assassin said, turning to look out of the window, “But it seems the winning team have you to deal with, so maybe its not my best move to go with them on this occasion,”
Deadrick didn’t know what kind of an answer that was, or whether to look upon the assassin as a friend or an enemy.
“It seems your friends are worried about you,” Garum said, looking at the ground.
Deadrick could faintly hear Nerui yelling his name- she’d obviously seen Garum through the window from below.
“That is my cue to leave,” Garum said. The staircase was shaking slightly as Nerui ran up it, “I can see you, Deadrick, always. And I can see in you. You’re scared,”
Deadrick narrowed his eyes.
“All that power… you haven’t been scared in a long time, have you? But now, its growing, the fear inside. Of what is going to happen when you meet the greatest evil you have ever faced,”
Nerui suddenly burst from the staircase. She saw Garum and grabbed for her throwing knife, but Garum swung an arm out. The pylon in the middle of the room suddenly came to life, green electricity thundering down it from the roof.
It struck the ground and spread across the room, the circles around the pylon lit up. Lighting the room up, Nerui and Deadrick had to cover their eyes, giving Garum enough time to smash the window and dive out.
When he disappeared, the pylon went cold and the circles began to fade.
Nerui rubbed her eyes as Danyel and Bruad appeared from the stairs.
“Are you okay?” She asked Deadrick.
But Deadrick didn’t answer; his mind was still reeling from what Garum had said.