The fateful evening was drawing closer, and Evania was becoming more aware that she was going to have to kill. She knew that her 'discussion' was not going to bring the desired results, thus she prepared herself for the inevitable.
The night was black and misty, foreshadowing the events to come. A few stars were just about visible through a squinted gaze, blurred by the thick mist. The roads were quieter than normal, with the steady sound of hooves clapping against the cobbled streets providing the only constant reminder that there was still life present in the town. Drawing closer to the Half Moon Inn, Evania pulled up her hood, sweeping her long coat behind her as she entered.
She noted upon arrival that gambling was the attraction of the moment. Men and women were huddled around decks of cards, eagerly hoping that the pile of gold accumulating in the centre of the table would be theirs. Evania was happy for the distraction, it meant there would be fewer straying eyes witnessing her task. She approached the bar, ordered an ale, and sat in nervous anticipation for Reuben to arrive. She hadn't questioned the barman, but as time drew on, she felt she should enquire.
"Have there been any new visitors to the town who have passed by today? There is a gentleman I'm very interested to meet."
The barman was chatty and quite oblivious to the true intent of her question. He polished a glass and looked at her with a knowing gaze, lowering his voice.
"It's funny you should mention, a fellow did come in earlier with a small group of...um...followers, let's say."
"Do you know where he went?"
"Well, another gentleman appeared to give him some trouble, so they went down into the basement to 'sort him out.' I haven't been down since, out of fear. Actually, if you wouldn't mind checking for me, I have some coinage I could offer as reward?"
"Certainly, and any offer of coin makes the matter much more appealing."
She arose from her stool, happy that she had at least some reason now to involve herself with the group, offering a perfectly innocent alibi. She descended the stairs, and began to hear thumping and banging. Calmly, she opened the door. She was stunned to see Raven, bloodied and bruised on the floor. Raven appeared shocked to see her too. However she tried to play it cool, and pretended not to recognise him. Reuben and his fellow men turned to her, eyeing her suspiciously.
“Hello, gentlemen. Reuben Taverner, I heard you were in town and I am very keen that we should meet. I too, am a Tolbyccian sympathiser.”
“A pleasure to make your acquaintance. I’m overjoyed to have another supporter.”
“Thank you, now if you don’t mind, I know of a much better place than this for our meeting and further plans.”
“Do lead on, madam. What did you say your name was?”
“Serena Underwood. And who is this?” She asked, pointing at Raven.
“This is a...pest we found earlier. He was stealing from me.”
“What shall we do with him?”
“Keep him with us, until he becomes useless.”
“Fine with me. Now gentlemen, I suggest taking a back route out of the Inn, and having the meeting in some secluded woodland. I know a spot.”
As they crept out through a back door, Raven and Evania’s eyes met. She nodded briefly, indicating all was not as it appeared.
The troupe made their way into the deep night, and Evania thanked Vitalito for the peaceful surroundings. That was going to make things much easier. She stopped in an apple orchard, which shielded them from public view.
“Reuben, are you sure you want ‘im ere?”
“Well, we don’t want any ‘baggage. Miss Underwood, care to end his existence?”