"Oh so there is some intelligence in wherever this place is" Racieus muttered sarcastically sitting up to look at the new visitor.
"Given that you were captured by one of the "unintelligent" from wherever this place is, you must realize that any insult against us is an insult against yourself" came an equally sarcastic reply.
The halfling came to his feet moving up to his bars to look the new elf in the eyes, or knees. "Is that what you were told?" Racieus asked. "Did the brat mention I was beating him while the fighting was fair? That I beat him to a kill? I don't suppose there is a trial by combat that I can invoke."
There was a laugh, and to the halfling's surprise it was not filled with malice or mockery, it seemed to be genuine amusement. "They told me you had a tongue on you. I will look into that for you small one."
"My name is Racieus" the halfling said with vitrol. There were precious few people who were allowed to call him that. When anyone else said it, he took it as an insult."
"My apologies Racieus. My name is Sigurd Vallentious lord of f'Ornetalbet." The introductions over, the elf spoke a few words in elvish to the the jailors, before making for the door.
"f'Ornetalbet" the halfling said to himself, as if trying to recall a time before when he heard that name. He shrugged off the thought. He was probably just imagining it. "Sounds like a pretentious one. He'd have to be to have a name like that" the small assassin joked.
The next few days in the jail passed without incident and, the halfling noted, no mistreatment. With nothing better to do, Racieus began every morning with a series of stretches and acrobatic routines that he had learned years ago. Part of being an assassin, a small assassin especially, was quickness and agility, and the halfling didn't mean to let that slip away if he could help it.
His antics had drawn the attention of his two jailors, who watched with intrigued expressions. Eventually they began to converse with the small assassin, and he found that he enjoyed their company.
"So do you do anything else besides jailing?" asked Racieus during the latest such conversation.
"Well we dig graves on very rare occasions when they are needed" Gilphric said.
"Bet that's a drag. Especially with only two of you."
"Well actually there used to be three of us" said Gilphric's companion, whom the halfling now knew to be Trylindil. "His name was Yorrick. One day he got a little too close to one of the prison doors and..." he trailed off, spinning around as he looked for something.
Gilphric had beat him to it though and pulled a skull from off a table. "We kept his skull to remember him. He was a good man, Yorrick."
"Alas poor Yorrick" Trylindil said quietly, taking the skull from his partner.
"Yorrick" the halfling said slowly, turning over the name as he spoke it. "Is that elvish?"
"I don't rightly know" Gilphric replied. He started to say more, but the door opening interrupted him.
"Ah, Lord Sigurd! What can we do for you?" welcomed Trylindil.
"I"m actually here to speak to the prisoner, thank you" came the reply, causing Racieus to jump up and move to the bars. The elf bowed slightly in greeting, and the halfling less than gracefully returned the gesture. "Were you serious when you spoke of a trial by combat?"
The halfling nodded eagerly, and the elf continued. "Well, don't agree to anything until I have finished. It may exceed your lust for battle," a breath, "I have received reports that an band of orcs has been making its way down the western shore of the Sodalan Sea. Your trial, if you choose to accept it, will be to intercept these orcs and destroy them. Should you do so, and I will know whether you have or not, you will be free to go. If you don't, my Udren will have little trouble in tracking you down."
Racieus swallowed hard. The Udren was the golden eyed elf who had transported him here, and they were said to be possessed of magic beyond any other which could be seen in Teranore. He had little doubt the half-elf half-beast would make short work of him.
Not that he had anything to worry about. He hadn't planned to simply run away even before the Udren had been mentioned. "I accept your offer Lord Sigurd, assuming of course I am allowed to have my weapons back," he said with a smirk.
Hours later, daggers once again strapped to his small form, and a crudely drawn map with the general location of the party of aggressors The halfling chuckled. It was ironic, he thought, saved from an elvish prison, by a group of orcs.
Now that wasn't something you saw everyday.