Desmond turned his pipe upside down and tapped it several times; bits of burned tobacco falling like charcoal covered snow. "What's your name mage?"

The mage gave him a weird look before clearing his throat. "Mard. My name is Mard, a wizard...well under-wizard to be precise." Desmond raised an eyebrow at the under-wizard. The voice had told him to bring a wizard along with him to capture Axel. It sounded reasonable enough as a wizard could be useful in trapping him or getting him incapacitated. But how in bloody hell will this...under-wizard help me?

He nodded at the wizard before turning to the flustered looking gargoyle. His face was a mix between defiance and fear. He didn't blame the creature though, it had every right to be frustrated at the death of one of it's own.

"You have any experience in any sort of combat?" Desmond asked the mismatched pair. Mard bit his lip for a moment before uttering "some." The gargoyle on the other hand shook his head.

"The sculptor created us to be guardians for these people. Even if they aren't worth guarding." The gargoyle flashed Mard a glare before turning back to Desmond. "You going after that man adventurer?"

Desmond nodded, setting his pipe back in the leather bag. "That man has a bounty on his head and I reckon' to collect it. Plus there's another reason, one i can't fully explain." Mard gave him a weird look before turning away, seemingly to converse with himself. The gargoyle gave him a weird look before turning back to Desmond.

He placed one of his granite talons over his chest. "By the magic that imbues my heart, I will assist you adventurer! That man killed one of my own," he said. He seemed to puff up a bit as he banged his rock talons together. "And like I said I aim to make him pay!”

Desmond chuckled. “ Quite a speech there gargoyle.” The creature gave him a toothy grin, revealing his rock teeth, carved to look like the inside of a dog’s mouth. Desmond had to admit, the sculptor was very clever with his hands.

“How about you wizard? You coming?” Mard stared at the ground for a moment before looking up at Desmond. His eyes that were once full of uncertainty were now filled with determination, as if something or someone else had ignited the adventurer inside the under-wizard.

“Good. Now we’ll need transportation, supplies and a map to Mount-Massive.”

The determination in his soon-to-be companions eyes faded, a look of terror now taking over. Desmond shook his head. “I’ll assume there’s something dangerous living there and that you two have no idea how to fight.”

The End

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