Tanz stepped to his right, then to the left, his arms moving in slow forms and creating the beautiful Dance of Beginnings. This was eccentric in nature and often considered a form of bragging. Well, Tanz was bragging in ways. None were as talented as he when it came to dancing. Of course, he could do more than dance.
"Tanz Von Endungen?"
Tanz turned to see a dark-haired beauty in a messenger skirt, his annoyance at being interrupted fading into joy at the sight of a woman. He crossed the empty room and came face to face with the now-blushing messenger girl. She couldn't be twenty yet and she was already gorgeous.
"For you," he said, taking her hand and kissing it, "the name is simply Tanz."
She blushed slightly and curtsied. How annoying. Being the King's personal Jester, Tanz was always treated with fear and respect. It wasn't surprising, really, just annoying. See, in any other kingdom a jester was a joker and a trickster to entertain. In FallenDomon, however, the role of Jester was the same as an assassin.
"Please, do not worry," Tanz said, taking the woman's hand and pulling her along to the center of the floor. She was a clutz at first, but once Tanz started the traditional dance of courting, the woman conformed quite nicely. In fact, she was a natural. "I am not like the others before me," Tanz whispered into the woman's ear, "All I wish to do is dance with a woman I have dreamed of for so long."
She blushed and stumbled a little. "Who... who is the woman...?"
Tanz chuckled and pushed a strand of hair from her oval face. "Why, don't you know?" He dipped her toward the ground and pulled her back up, but closer to his body. "It is you." Now for the end. Tanz bent his head low and attempted a kiss. Such beautiful lips.
What he found was empty space.
The messenger woman had pulled away at the last instance. "The King warned me about you, yet I almost fell pray." She looked to be a mix of angry and regretful. Did she want Tanz? "You are to report to his throne room immediately!" WIth that, the woman left and slammed the door. Such a pity. Tanz hadn't even gotten a name.
"What does the King wish for, I wonder...."
"Do you like our Kingdom, Jester?"
Tanz sighed at King Krieg Liebemorder. He was a large man and unrivaled in any form of combat. That was the requirement to be king in this nation. On the political plane, he trumped the greatest of the Council. On the battle field, he could best any soldier with any weapon. The only thing that gave him a hold was stealth. The king would fail in any mission requiring stealth. That was where Tanz came in.
"Of course, my liege," Tanz replied lazily. Being the Jester, he could speak on normal terms with the King. There was no real danger unless he outright challenged the man. "If I did not, I would have moved long ago."
The King bellowed a laugh. "Of all my subjects, you are the only that I cannot predict."
Tanz bowed deeply, making sure the large King knew it was sarcastic. "Predictablility is not my specialty, my liege."
The King stroked his large beard and shook his head. "But you do have a specialty in another field," he said, turning to Tanz. Being a very small man with handsome looks and short golden hair, Tanz was the exact opposite of the the King in looks. Their minds, however, sometimes seemed to click together. How odd...
"So, you wish for someone to go onto the eternal world?"
Tanz cocked his head, trying to discover who his target was. "You want me to dance with Councilor Seacion? I heard he was rather rude the other week..."
The King shook his head. "I have talked with the other Kings across the land. The Emperor grows in power and threatens to take our lands."
Did he mean... "So... you want me to take out the Emperor?"
"Exactly!" The king laughed in his deep booming way and clapped Tanz on the shoulder. Tanz repressed his annoyance at the King ruffling his nice dress coat. "I want you to take that man's head and place it on a pole at the front gate of our capital!"
Tanz nodded and felt his stomach ache. He always hated the beheading ones... Killing was easy, but taking a head was messy... "I'll get on it immediately."
"Hold on, that's just the side mission."
Tanz stopped trying to get out of the King's 'friendly' grip and looked at the man curiously. What did he mean?
"The main objective is something more important," He said, "I want you to find something in the Emperor's throne room..."
Tanz pulled on the last bracer and stood looking at himself in the mirror. He had clothed himself in a skin-tight black leather suit with thick leather armor covering his vital areas and limbs. Such a nuisance, this outfit was. The only part of him visible was a rectangular patch where his eyes were located. That was only visible for a moment, anyway. Where was that mask...
There! Tanz recovered a deep blue mask from one of his many trunks and placed it on his head. Next, he retrieved a black crown from the same trunk and attached it via straps on his mask. Yes, he truly looked the part to kill a corrupt ruler now...
"You are Tanz?"
Intruder! Tanz rolled backwards toward the voice and moved strategically to the right of the trespasser. To any others it was a dancing maneuver, but to Tanz, it was a way to move. The Dance of Shadows. Tanz placed a finger against his enemies neck, the pressure point named Death's Embrace targeted and ready to press. Now to-
His enemy was a man in a dark green archer suit and a hood covering any facial features. Not the tallest or largest man, but definately not short or weak. That wasn't what stopped Tanz's thought's, however. What had stopped him was the arrowhead against his own neck. Behind it was a bow being held by the intruder at the tightest place.
If Tanz killed this man, the bow would release and Tanz would die. Simple as that.
"I have been assigned to watch your back," the man said slowly. So dark a voice...
Tanz pulled away and watched as the man put his bow up. It folded twice and disappeared into his cloak. Such beauty for a weapon... "I see. I am Tanz Von Endungen."
The man nodded. "I am Reiher."
So, the most famous of snipers in FallenDamen. It was said only a child can hear him and live. A saying meaning when he hunts, he kills, only sparing the innocent children. He would be useful, then.
"Well, Reiher," Tanz said, pulling his large merchant's robe on over his assassin suit and placing his mask and crown in one of the random bags he would carry, "Let us be off!"