Chapter 8: Redemption (Part 2)

Lieran picked up the note gingerly and read over it quickly. As he did so, Racieus stepped over the head and skirted the house in the hopes of spotting the person responsible for the delivery. He found no one though, and returned to his teacher just as he was crumpling the note.

“It’s Firg. Or what’s left of him. He was away on a job in Kaldborne. I’m going to assume he failed.” Racieus was trying very hard to feel bad for the dead guild member, but his mind was a tangled mess of emotions, and always kept circling around to excitement. “I can sense your anticipation halfling,” Lieran said with a roll of his eyes. “Your hopes have indeed come to pass, a spot has opened up and a tournament will soon be held. I will make the announcement once everyone is up. In the meantime, would you care to occupy yourself with another spar?”

Racieus could hardly concentrate, but he nodded distractedly and followed the tall assassin back up to the practice area, to resume their beautiful dance of death.


The room quieted instantaneously when the guild master held up his hands. All the guild was gathered in the large cafeteria that doubled for them as an assembly area of sorts. When all the sound had vanished, a smile came to Lieran’s face, “I love it when it’s immediate like that! Ah, well sadly, the first piece of news I bring is not cause for merriment. Firg, one of our best, met an untimely end while on a job out in the west.” The assassin paused for a moment, allowing the information to sink in, before hurrying on and shouting out, “Which means it is time for another tournament!”

The room erupted into cheering. “It will take place tonight, and begin as soon as the sun goes down. The rest of the details will be given to you once I think of them! You have the day to get prepared and submit your weapons blunting. That does include any members who plan to roam the tournament grounds. Of course, members who do participate will not be able to eliminate those actually competing, but can be eliminated themselves, and I expect all of you to treat this privilege honorably. If any misconduct reaches my ears, there will be serious punishment laid down. Is that understood?”

A huge chorus of voices rang out in affirmation, and the guild master nodded, pleased. “Good! Then go off and get ready! Meet back here thirty minutes before the sun sets completely for the final rules and details.”

Racieus, practically hopping up and down with excitement, didn’t know how he was going to make it through the next few hours. He decided he’d go on Lieran’s version of a run through town, which involved a good deal of acrobatics and gravity defying feats, that Racieus had been learning throughout his training. Jogging into town, the halfling found a small alleyway. Putting a leg against one wall, the small assassin pushed off, already lining up his next leg with opposite wall, and quickly repeated the process, gaining enough height to climb onto the roof of the building. He increased his pace to a sprint, so he’d have enough moment to clear the gaps between roofs.

At one point there was a street wide gap between the store Racieus was running atop, and the next building, which was tall enough that he’d have to go through the open window. The halfing leapt a few feet before he reached the edge of the store, so that he’d land on the awning, which, for someone of his size, put an extra spring in the jump. The small assassin soared across the street, over the heads of humans, the rare dwarf, and the even rarer elf. He cleared the window, rolling as he landed. He continued on through the house without interruption, and leapt out a window on the other side, grabbing a clothesline and and climbing hand over hand across it. When he reached the opposite wall, he dropped, grabbing a window sill to arrest his momentum, before repeating the action until he reached the ground. Racieus stepped out onto a familiar street, the seamstress’ house down the street to the halfling’s right.

He had just visited the place a few weeks ago. Racieus had taken to small excursions out into the town, stealing the occasional purse and saving the coin until he was able to afford two more, slightly smaller knives. After purchasing them, he had visited the tailor’s shop, leaving the weapons and their sheathes with her so she could make a few adjustments to them. The assassin now wore the weapons on his forearms, the sheathes hidden by his ample sleeves. It had taken a bit of practice for the halfling to get some amount of control over the flick and grab that would bring the weapons into his hands.

That was a trick he was sure Fin would like. If only Racieus knew where he might find him. If he was even still alive. If any of them were still alive. The young assassin hadn’t thought about his friend in quite a long time with everything that had been going on. He hadn’t had time to afford it, and with mixed emotions, the halfling realized that he was leaving his old life behind. Perhaps, once he became a full member, and was able to travel Teranore to wherever his jobs led him, he could ask around… maybe his friend was still out there somewhere-

A body collided with Racieus,knocking him to the ground. The halfling rolled with the momentum, and gracefully came to his feet, daggers drawn and ready to-

“Easy there little fellah!” exclaimed a portly man, hands raised in placation. “My apologies, I didn’t see ya standin’ there. ‘Scuse me.” Racieus watched the man hurry away, and blinked a few times. He hadn’t meant to start daydreaming like that, and with the sun setting, he was lucky it had only been a man that had collided with him and not a-

The sun! Racieus thought in a panic, remembering Lieran’s instructions to meet back at the assembly area before the sun had completely set. He sprinted down the road, turning into the alley and following the next road all the way back to the guild house, as fast as his legs could carry him.

The End

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