5A Chapter by Lowesy
I found my Mouse, the small blond haired boy. I told him to keep an eye out for Little Rich and listen for any rumours that may be floating around about Don.
The weather had taken a change from yesterday, light rain began to fall, so light in fact that the strong wind was able to catch it in mid air and make it dance at will. The light water specs shifted and changed course as I walked, it hit me from all directions, covering me from head to toe. Grey clouds had gathered overhead, they looked like wisps of smoke against a dark sky above them. From further East I could see more clouds coming, the rain was going to get heavier, with thunder and lightning a possibility.
The soul inside the cylinder kept calling out to me, the energy it gave off changed from time to time. One second it would be warm, the other it would vibrate, and even give off a static shock to my fingertips, I never noticed how much it moved around in my pocket until I started paying attention. I felt as if I wanted to play with it, either that or it wanted to be played with, to be used, to be held, I couldn’t really tell. The last words Prospect said to me, he was right, I didn’t know who was looking for it. I wondered who would cage a soul like this, stop it from finding peace, and considering the soul was pure energy, who knows what it could be used for.
Lowri had left me quite some time ago; she went to find Tyrone, the food handler from the palace.
I needed to find more on these rumours flying around, if I came back to Don with no answers and no one to punish, he wouldn’t be happy. I needed to know where Marv was last, to find that out, I needed Breaches.
I took a left from Archers Walk and stepped out onto Black Cross, the same bustling market as two days ago still buzzed with excitement, shop keeps shouted the prices of their stock, customers haggled the prices down as a response, all wearing a hat of some kind or an umbrella. The first rumble of thunder from a distance echoed across the city.
I half jogged-half walked across the square, heading for the wooden door with a number eight, the likelihood of Breaches still being there was small but I needed him. I entered; with the thunder growing louder the need for silence was lessoned. I took the stairs two at a time; soon I was looking through the dust once more. This time however, the room was empty.
No fat starfish on the bed.
I cursed to myself and rubbed my eyes, tiredness had found them once again. I knew Breaches wouldn’t stick around, but the faintest of hopes still dwindled.
I took out my pipe and struck a match, before I could light however, I felt the cold steel of a blade on my neck.
“No sudden moves, hands up, nice and easy.”
I did as the voice commanded, I held up my hands, shaking the flame off the match as I did so.
“Good, packing?” a hand reached around and took my dagger. “Besides this?”
“Punch in the front.”
The same hand came around for my little punch knife. As it did so, I caught no scent; a Watcher was just muscle someone had hired off the street, dirty, sweaty. No scent meant clean, uniform. No scent meant a Wetman.
“Who sent you?”
The Wetman said nothing; instead he guided me over to the bed and turned me around.
I wasn’t surprised by what I saw in his attire and stature, dark clothes, clean shaven, broad shouldered and stacked with lean muscle. The sleeves of his black tunic were rolled up; revealing the bulge of muscle which wrapped around his forearm, this man was built for fighting. His features however, did catch me off-guard, eyes the shape of almonds, dark and fierce; they darted around my limbs to check for any surprises that might come his way. His skin was the shade of caramel, and his long, tied back hair was the colour of coal.
“You’re a Jűr.”
He pushed me to sit on the bed, I fell back. The ceiling looked and weak, dust sprung from the bed as I landed and continued to dance in the air above. I lifted myself with my arms to sit up and face my potential killer.
“Where is it?” he took two steps back keeping his arms at his sides and his eyes pinned on mine. There were no creases in this man’s face, no signs of emotion; he was plain and deadly serious.
“Where’s what?” my mind was already racing, exit strategies flew in and out as I analysed the situation, the room and the skill of the assassin in front of me. The windows were now boarded up; it seems Breaches had taken something from our last encounter. The stairs were too far away, any attempt to roll from the bed and run toward them resulted in me revealing my back, a spot I couldn’t defend, although it seemed I couldn’t defend my front at that moment also.
“The book, the journal of Vladimir Fudd?”
The thoughts of escaping stopped. Instead I wondered how they knew about the journal that I had stolen from Ragstaffe. A clap of thunder boomed outside, followed by a flash of lightning, heavy raindrops hit the poorly maintained rooftop.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about.” The Jűr moved so quick I barely had time to react, a pain shot through my right shoulder, I looked down and sure enough, there was the Jűr’s knife embedded into the space between my arm and collar. I gritted my teeth whilst screaming at the same time; I lay back on the bed and clutched at my shoulder. The Jűr pulled out his knife and took another two steps back.
“Learn quickly, Cal, there are only so many places I can stab you without hitting an organ.”
The pain was unbearable, blinding almost. I squeezed my eyes shut and tried to control myself. Any thoughts of escaping were moving further and further to the back of my mind.
“I’ll tell you,” I breathed heavily, “if you tell me why you want it?”
“I don’t think you’re in a position to haggle. Where is it?”
I fought with myself. The journal seemed important and both the Royals and now the Jűr wanted it. It appeared to be just a diary of an old man, maybe there was something more to it, in which case, I didn’t want to just give it away.
The Jűr sighed and moved to stab again.
“No, no, wait,” I gritted my teeth, bracing myself for another jolt of pain, but none came, “I can’t just tell you, I have to show you.”
“Because... it’s guarded.”
My captor stood silent for a few seconds, eyeing me suspiciously and clearly thinking about how much he could trust me. He must have decided that between the pain in my shoulder and being unarmed he could make sure I wouldn’t try anything because he nodded.
With a knife to my throat, I stood while grasping my shoulder in an attempt to stem any bleeding.
“Have you anything for this?” I asked, referring to the open wound.
He shook his head.
“Going to look pretty suspicious, walking through the most legal part of South Seren holding my shoulder and a Jűr at my back, Roach might see us.”
“We’re not going that way,” he guided me over to the window. “It was good enough for you last time you were here.”
I stopped dead, staring into the Jűr’s almond shaped eyes, dark and deep. “What? How long have you been watching me?”
“Long enough,” he replied with a small smile, “now, go.”
I hesitated, it wasn’t the height this time " although that was a factor " it was that the Jűr knew who I was, where I had been and who I had seen. If I was easy to keep eyes on, then I wasn’t doing my job properly.
I held the frame of the window and lifted a leg up, holding onto the wet gutter of the rooftop I attempted to hoist myself up in the rain, as soon as the weight pulled on my arm the pain shot through my shoulder and my side. With the thunder rumbling, I kicked a leg up, hooking my boot onto the roof and pulled. By the time I had rolled myself over and got onto my feet, the Jűr was standing opposite. I breathed heavily and felt the ache throb down my arm. My fingertips began to tingle.
“So, where are we going?” he asked, holding the knife up once more.
“My place, I’m sure you know where that is.”
The Jűr’s small smile reappeared.
We stood at the front door of my home on Trinity Street, the Jűr still holding the knife to my back as he did practically the whole journey. The rain still fell, a flash of lightning lit up the dull grey clouds to the East followed by roar of thunder. I took my cap off and combed the hair out of my eyes.
“You said it was guarded.”
I turned the door handle and opened the door an inch, “I need my knife, the long one.”
“No, open it.”
“I can’t without unhooking the line attached to the door knob on the inside.” I looked at the Jűr.
“Fine,” he took out my dagger, and while holding his knife to the back of my neck, handed it over.
I pushed it through the gap and unhooked the handle, leaving me to open the door freely. We stepped inside; the smell of home hit me, familiar and comfortable, although this time I wasn’t. I saw my bed across the room and yearned for it. My eyes stung with tiredness but that didn’t compare to my shoulder which ached and my arm that felt numb.
Handing back my dagger, I walked over to the chest and opened it using a handkerchief. The Jűr watched on as I took out my uniform and sword, the knife on my neck dug deeper.
“You were in the Royal Guard?”
“You were, in Ragstaffe?” I couldn’t see, my back was to him, but I’m sure he said that through clenched teeth.
I hesitated; the wrong answer could have meant death. However, it was likely I was going to die once he had this journal, if he was angry he would be erratic, concentrating on killing me and not protecting himself, which could work in my favour, however I had lost a lot of blood and the whole of my right arm was now numb, he knew what he was doing, wounding my favoured arm, he knew I would deny knowledge the first time of asking. “Yes, I left just after.”
The knife dug even deeper, I’m sure I could feel a drop of blood trailing its way down my spine. My eyes darted, my sword was close by, my only weapon.
“The journal. Now.”
I searched the chest, but couldn’t find it, I was sure it was in there. I was wrong. S**t. I grabbed the hilt of my sword and rolled to the side, swinging as I pitched onto my knees.
The Jűr bent low and shot a knife my way, by sheer luck it hit the flat side my sword. My eyes widened, the roll had squeezed out more blood from my shoulder I was sure of it.
“It’s not in there.” I panted.
“Where is it?”
“I don’t know, nobody can get in without being killed, certainly not into that chest.”
He pulled another knife from his belt, longer and thicker than my dagger.
The Jűr didn’t need to say anything, instead he expressed the same smug smile, it curled the one corner of his mouth, nothing else moved. I gave myself a slim chance at best of coming out of this alive.
My eyesight became blurry, the Jűr standing in front of me became double and a faint sway had crept into my stance.
The Jűr stood up straight and smiled once more.
“What are you doing?” I strained my eyes to focus.
“Look at you, you can barely stand let alone fight.” He still held my dagger and his knife.
I tried to mumble something to encourage the Jűr to fight, for a reason I’m not sure however, as I would be killed if he did. But I knew what my assassin was going to do, wait for me to tire, then slit my throat. Easy and less tiring. The tip of my sword hit the floor.
“What do you want the book for?”
The Jűr smiled again, “nothing for you to worry about, Cal. You’re not going to be here to worry about it.”
“Just tell me,” there was plea in my voice, I panted even heavier now, numbness mixed with a dull, throbbing pain had spread across my chest. I leant back against the wall of my house, and slumped to the dusty floor.
“Alright,” the Jűr sat on my bed, “the journal contains instructions. Instructions on how to tap into the immortal world of souls, the Netherworld as you refer to it.”
“What will happen if you put these instructions into use?” my eyelids felt heavier and my shoulders slumped.
“They cross over, walk amongst them, bring back whom they please.”
“So the Jűr want to bring somebody back from the dead?”
“Not bring them back, and Cal, not us.”
The Jűr smiled once more before blackness fell, I could no longer see, I could no longer breathe, I let go.
© 2012 Lowesy
Added on January 16, 2012
Last Updated on January 17, 2012
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