Chapter 5

Chapter 5

A Chapter by Isemay

Waking in the pitch black it took Syreilla a moment to remember where she was. She immediately felt around for the circlet which had fallen off as she slept, pulling it back on with a relieved sigh. The room was still dim and she was still definitely alone and on the steel coffin.

It was easier to work the locks after having slept her mind and fingers worked better after the rest. And the locks being upside down was actually helpful, damned elves. It still took more time than she would have liked to get them all open and heaving the steel coffin up was a struggle. She had to beat the bolts holding the mask to the bottom out with a brick to do it at all, the damned corpse was holding it down.

Kaddal probably would have had more appropriate tools for that. She would have had to disable every trap she’d come across to get him in, and he probably would have gotten killed at the damned warded corridor. Syr brought her focus back to the job at hand.

The amulet was on a simple leather strap, no clasp, just a knot on the side that she wasn’t going to bother untying. “There we are.” Syreilla cut it off with her slim boot knife and stowed it in her satchel. “Careful not to break you.” Sliding him back into the coffin she closed the lid. Stealing from the dead was one thing, being completely disrespectful about it was another. As she was leaving she noticed something on a pedestal near where she had broken the wall. With a closer look, she realized it was a crown. She checked it for traps with a grin. “No treasure my a*s.”

Lifting it, it was heavy, probably solid gold and it had five fat gems. In this dimness, it was hard to tell their color but they were definitely dark. “Gorgeous.” She wished she had a shirt or something to wrap it in as she fit it into her satchel.

Making her way out felt easier and quicker than getting in had. Syreilla felt like she was bursting with energy and excitement. Stepping out of the entrance of the Nameless into the light of the sinking sun, there was no longer anyone lingering. No lich, and no elves. They must have thought she’d died.

She started to laugh and quickly sobered realizing Kaddal was still sitting and rotting where she’d left him and she didn’t have a horse waiting anymore either. Checking the track and taking a lap around the clearing to be sure, Syr took a moment to curse and throw some rocks into the trees. She walked back to the pieces of Kaddal, dragging a hand through her hair.

Standing over the pieces of what was left Syreilla sighed, “I should have been the first one in, you might not have been the brightest but you didn’t deserve this. I will get you home, and I’ll do it before I hunt that lich down and give him the amulet he wanted so badly.” She just needed a way to gather him up and carry him.

“A cart would be helpful.” Syreilla’s head snapped around. In the entrance way stood the corpse she had looted and carefully put back. She blinked.

“It would. So would living long enough to actually keep my promise.” She watched, rooted in place as it moved toward her.

“Why would I kill you? You freed me.” Its voice was dry but it didn’t quite have the hideous sibilance of a lich’s voice.

“People tend to frown on being robbed. You’ll have to forgive me if that’s what I expected you to focus on.”

The rasping sound it made almost sounded like laughter. “A thief of the house of Olthon Camaenion. How charming.”

“Olthon Camaenion? Sounds like an elf. I’m only half and they don’t associate with the likes of us if they can help it. There were two here when I went in though, looking forward to laughing at my horrible death.”

“Ah.” He looked around the darkening clearing. “They left you?”

“Of course. I think they all thought I was dead.” Syreilla shrugged.

“What house do you hold to?” It asked curiously.

She started to grin, “Clan Hammersworn. Batran Hammersworn bought me off of the headsman’s block. I’ve more than paid him back but I’m fond of the man and glad to belong to his clan.”

The dead man looked at her as if she were a puzzle. “Things… have changed.”

“From the antique locks, I imagine you were in there awhile.”

“Tell me, do you know me?” It asked curiously.

“No, they call this place the Nameless, and I was told there was evil inside it, but beyond that.” She shrugged again.

“And you came in without fear?”

“I came in because I had a job to do. Kaddal took it and begged me to help. I said yes. Stupidly. If I’d known I’d be working for a lich I’d have never agreed.” Syreilla shuddered.

“The lich wants the amulet.” It seemed amused.

“Yes. The crown I took on my own, that was just too pretty to leave.” She measured it with her gaze as she casually mentioned the crown.

It seemed to be laughing again. “Help me remove the mask and call me by my name and I will let you keep it.”

“That seems more than fair.” Syreilla gave him a nod and a grin. “You’ll have to tell me what your name is first, though.”

“Vezar Edra, the Undying.” She could tell he was waiting for a reaction.

“Vezar Edra, the Undying, let’s get that mask off of you.” She grinned impishly at him, “Batran won’t know what to do with himself if I bring him something he doesn’t have to hide.”

He almost seemed disappointed. Vezar sat still while she worked on the mask. It was only bolted but they had been in place for so long they didn’t want to come free. When she finally got them loose and took it off, Vezar gave her a terrifying smile. His skin was dry and creased, the lips folded back more than curved. “What is your name? Thief of Clan Hammersworn.”

“Syreilla.” She pursed her lips. “Please don’t take this the wrong way Vezar, but you might want to keep a mask on. You might be undying but someone forgot to tell your face that.”

His mouth opened as if he were going to protest and then he began to laugh again. “Syreilla, your mother gave you no other name?”

“She did. She thought she could make my father recognize me by giving me his name. But I’d rather eat my tongue than be called by it.” She gave him a mirthless smile.

“Elves used to be more accepting of their half-human offspring.” His face contorted in what she thought might be amusement.

“I don’t know anything about that. All I know is they’re not fond of humans or dwarves, but they can’t stand half-elves. The feeling is mutual as far as I’m concerned.”

“Dwarves embrace half-dwarves?” He sounded fascinated.

Syreilla nodded. “At Delver’s Deep at least, there's quite a few there. Mordaeg Aledelver’s mother was a half-dwarf. Batran is a half-dwarf, and despite having me in his family, he’s well respected.” She gave a proud grin. “Partly because I’m in his family he’s rather wealthy. That helps, I think. He’s even been trying to marry me off to a Kaduil Hardjaw.” At his incredulous expression, she explained, “The man is skilled and Batran wants him in the clan, he doesn’t belong to one yet since his mother raised him among the humans for the most part.”

Vezar shook his head looking surprised and disappointed. “Wife. You and a half-dwarf.”

Laughing at his reaction, she shook her head, “I’m not the stay in the mine type. Kaduil needs that. He wants a wife he can see every day. I’m fond of him, but…” She smiled wryly.

“Things have changed indeed.” Vezar seemed both baffled and amazed. “Allow me to travel with you, I would see this new world at the side of someone who does not fear me.”

For something that looked like a lich, he didn’t have the dirty, wrong feeling about him that a lich did, but still. Taking Vezar to Delver’s Deep looking like he did would be problematic. Not just the travel, but actually arriving. Batran and Mordaeg both would have words about it.

“My appearance troubles you?” Vezar sounded amused.

Syreilla tilted her head and then gave a nod. “It’ll cause problems, whether you’re traveling with me or not.”

“Ah. I can,” he paused, “alter it, but there are things I require. Is there a town nearby?”

“A couple hour’s ride. I can show you.”

“Point me in the right direction, Syreilla. I can find my way. I will return with a cart for us, and your friend.” Vezar smiled again and she tried not to flinch. Someone would try to kill him without a doubt.

“I’m more than certain someone is going to try to kill you looking like that, Vezar. I should go with you to make sure no one cuts you up and sets you on fire. You look like kindling.”

His rasping laughter filled the clearing. “My dear Syreilla, they have tried. Stay with your friend. I will return for you.” He looked at her expectantly and she sighed and shook her head.

“At least take a knife.” She drew her boot knife and offered it to him.

Vezar looked at it as if she had given him an adorable little toy. “This is barely a knife, Syreilla.”

“It cuts, and if you know what you’re doing you can kill with it. What more do you need?” She crossed her arms, almost adding beggars can’t be choosers.

“Thank you, Syreilla. I did not mean to insult your knife.” The a*s was humoring her, she was sure of it.

She gave him an annoyed look. “Come on, I’ll show you the track.” Syreilla pointed out to him the way she’d come with the horse. It wasn’t a very well-traveled path but it was traveled enough. He nodded and set out confidently.

© 2017 Isemay

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Added on December 26, 2017
Last Updated on December 26, 2017
Tags: thief, dwarf, elf, dragon, gods




Bitten by a writing bug! Review my writing and I will gladly return the favor! I love reading other people's stories, and I try to review honestly and give constructive criticism. I love receivi.. more..

Chapter 1 Chapter 1

A Chapter by Isemay

Chapter 2 Chapter 2

A Chapter by Isemay

Chapter 3 Chapter 3

A Chapter by Isemay