Daniel moved behind the trees and disappeared into the shadows. I could hear subtle noises against the trees; Daniels climbing skills were unmatched, especially if it came to tree climbing. It was my turn to act. I glanced over to the assassin that was holding my sword. I outstretched my arm, making sure I was aiming towards the hilt of my sword. I gathered more of the shadowy magic that manifested in my arm, focusing on my target, I released my spell.
A dark jagged hand leaped out of my palm and shot across the sky. By the time my enemies noticed the noise of the spell, the hand had already wrapped its claws around the hilt of my sword. Immediately the sword vanished from existence then reappeared in my hands.
I spun the sword around and threw off the scabbard, revealing the dark metal blade. The leaf blade had small spiral markings that covered its entirety. A feature that stood out was the forked end of the blade that led into a gap that was not very far from the tip; it was a feature that I would soon use.
The assassins took out their weapons and wasted no time in trying to dispatch me. I ran into battle holding my sword in one hand, and a ball of magic in my other. The first enemy came up to me with a set of daggers, our blades clashed and he drove his other dagger towards my abdomen. Fortunately it was a move I anticipated. I spun out of his blade’s reach and swiped my other hand upward. A swarm of diminutive insects leaped out of my hands and rushed towards my opponents face. It was obvious that the spell had done its job once I saw the assassin flailing around, signaling that his sight had been temporarily obstructed. Twisting my hand, I immediately controlled the swarm to move on to the remaining assassins. It bounced back and forth between enemies before they could reach me.
I have them now.
I placed my hand against the guard of my blade and focused on my next spell. Tendrils of black and green magic flooded into the blade, and then I slid the blade across the blinded assassin’s chest. What was left behind was a burning viscous poison that began to feed away at his body. My enemy began to writhe in pain as the poison began to take effect.
With that enemy dealt with I shifted my attention towards the other three. I knew very well that Daniel was already in position, and that now was the perfect moment for him to make an entrance. I released a two note whistle into the sky and waited for him to act.
Then like a blur in the leaves, Daniel leaped out and dived towards the nearest enemy. He drove his daggers into his chest just as he landed. Two remained now.
Daniel made his may next to me just as my first spell had worn off.
“Okay, you want to take out the shorty or should I?”
“Leave the Asura to me,” I said. With that we both charged towards our targets.
The Asura seemed to be waiting for the opportunity to kill me; he leaped towards me as soon as I was in range. I barely managed to evade his long blade. I rolled to one side and he would immediately swipe his sword towards my direction. He was obviously more proficient with a blade than I was. I was forced to block most of his attacks and evade the rest. His attacks were swift and relentless; he definitely wanted me dead for a particular reason. Whatever the reason, it was beyond my knowledge.
For a brief moment I shifted my gaze towards Daniel to see how his battle was going. He seemed to be holding off quite well. He would strike his opponent left and right without the slightest signs of fatigue, after spending so much time with him I could tell that he was toying with his prey.
I foolishly allowed my attention to shift to his battle; I quickly suffered the consequences of my actions. The opening was all my opponent needed to land a severe blow. I could feel the end of the assassins serrated blade dig its way across the upper right-hand area of my torso. I leaped backwards trying to avoid as much of the attack as I could, however the damage was done. A large gash was torn open across my chest and it was bleeding profusely.
Pay attention you blasted imbecile, I thought to myself, and frankly I had no one else to blame. I did my best to ignore the sharp pain that raced through the shredded flesh across my torso and focused at my enemy.
His next attack was on its way. He stabbed his sword and I quickly dodged out of the way. He was aiming for the center of my chest, had he succeeded it would have caused an entirely different problem. He was readying himself for another thrust, this time I was ready. The Asura began to waddle its way towards me and leaped high into the air as it readied his sword. I ran in as I gathered one more spell into my hands.
I stabbed my sword towards his own and made sure the blade would get stuck between the forked gap at the tip of my blade. The Asura was knocked out of the air and disarmed once I yanked his blade with a flick of my wrist. Tossing the Asura’s blade aside I splayed my other hand towards my enemy before he could get back on his feet. A series of skeletal hands erupted from the floor and held on to the short and stubby legs of my opponent.
Nothing would save him now.
I ran in and slid my sword across his throat.
One more to go.
I ran over towards Daniel’s direction, as he noticed my approach he ran in and kicked the one remaining assassin. He was sent flying across the floor.
“Took you long enough, “said Daniel once I was by his side. “So you wanna take this guy out together?”
“Sounds like a plan,” I said readying my sword. We both faced the assassin as he got back on his feet. The human soon realized that he was outnumbered. However that did not stop him from drawing his blades and charging towards us.
“Ready?” asked Daniel.
I began to prepare yet another spell. “Ready!”
We both bounded towards our target. As we sprinted Daniel reached into his pocket and I painted the air around me with a dark aura. A cloud of darkness was released from my hands and Daniel had thrown a smoke bomb onto the floor in front of us. The entire area was now enveloped in a blinding cloak, and the assassin was now seconds from death. We both knew what to do next, I could still tell that Daniel was running next to me and that he could sense my presence as well. Memorizing where the target was we prepared our weapons and lunged. I took the lower position as I slowly began to shift to the opposite side, and Daniel leaped over me as he took the higher position.
It was all over in a seconds, I felt my sword connect and I could hear Daniel’s daggers sink through the Human’s chest. We leaped out of the cloud and immediately sheathed our weapons with a certainty that the target was dead. Little by little the cloud began to clear up. Once the smoke had vanished, it revealed the assassin. He stood there frozen as he had one large gash that seethed with poison, and several more lacerations that came from Daniel’s daggers. Suddenly blood began to erupt from the wounds as he collapsed to the floor.
Daniel and I took this time to sigh in relief; the fight was over. Daniel looked over to me and pulled off his mask. He gave me a wide grin before speaking.
“Well that ended nicely,” Daniel took notice of the large gash over my chest, his expression changed from joy to concern. “Are you ok? That looks serious, how can you be walking around like that?!”
“Just a scratch,” I said. “You do not have to worry about it.”
“That is way too much blood for a scratch!”
“It’s fine, really. It is not even bleeding any more so there is no danger.”
“Well, if you say so…” I could tell that he was reluctant to change topics; however we had to find out what we could about our stalkers. So we began to search the bodies of the Asura and the Human we just killed, taking note of the strange armor that they wore.
We removed the chest piece from the Asura. It was as light as leather, but as durable and resistant as any plated armor. The reason for that were the small metallic shards that connected with each other across the front and back. If looked at closely, they almost resembled the thorns of a rose. Daniel confirmed that he had never seen anything like it before, neither had I for that matter. And we did not find anything that would help us identify this group, whoever they were. There were no emblems, contracts of assassination, nothing.
“These guys really did make an effort to make sure no one would find about them should they fail,” said Daniel.
“Well we should take a piece of the armor with us,” I suggested. “Maybe we can get someone to identi- AHH!”
A stabbing pain in my foot caused me to howl in pain. I turned around to find that the assassin I first fought was still alive; he had mustered enough strength to throw one more dagger. Perhaps he wanted to take me into the mists along with him.
“Anavari!” Daniel drew out a dagger and threw it towards the assassin. His perfect aim managed to stab him right between the eyes. The assassin was silenced, and Daniel moved over to my injured foot.
“Okay,” he said as he carefully examined the wound. “It…doesn’t look that bad…” he said reassuringly.
“Just pull it out!” I exclaimed. With one swift movement Daniel tore out the knife from my foot, to my misfortune this blade was serrated as well. I did my best to restrain the roar of pain that came afterward, I did…to an extent. I managed to reduce it to a… high pitched squeak. I clamped my muzzle shut and hoped that Daniel did not hear it.
“…what was that?” He heard it. Daniel rose back to his feet with a look of both surprise and befuddlement.
“You heard nothing!” I shouted as I began to make my way out of the forest.
“Wait you can’t walk around with a foot like that!” Daniel rushed over to my side. “I have some bandages in my pack; let me patch it up for you.”
“No need. I can heal it myself,” I said as I began to search for my pack. I found it tossed to the side of a tree. I walked over to it and took the staff that was attached to it. I threw on the pack and began to use the staff as a walking stick as I made my way out of the wooded area.
“Stubborn charr,” said Daniel loud enough so I could hear him.
We both began to make our way back to our original camp site. We found the campfire that we had prepared last night, it was still releasing small strings of smoke into the air.
Now that the ordeal was over I decided to do something about my wounds. I focused on the appropriate spell for the job and gathered what strength I had left. A thin cloud of and green smoke began to manifest itself at my feet, it traveled towards my wounds and I instantly felt a wave of relief. The torn flesh began to repair itself, my skin began to grow back and so did my fur. The entire process took merely a few minutes, the entire time Daniel stood to the side and watched. The Human would always take any chance to closely examine any display of magic. I sighed in relief once it was all over. I felt much better than I did before that much was certain, however the same could not be said for my robe. I opened my pack and searched for a spare shirt. I stored the assassin armor in there once I found my shirt.
“Okay you can turn around now,” I said.
“Your little quirks amaze me sometimes you know?” Daniel began to poke the area where my chest had been torn open. “So is everything in top working order?”
“Yes,” I nodded. I began to walk back to the road until a sharp pain resonated from my foot. I gave a loud grunt as I nearly collapsed onto the floor.
“What’s wrong?” asked Daniel with concern. I looked over to my foot and noticed that the wound was still there. It had stopped bleeding but for some reason my spell had no effect on it.
“Impossible!” I exclaimed.
“What is?” Daniel glanced over at my foot and immediately dropped to the floor. He began to sniff the foot. “Poison, we should get you off your foot.”
“No!” I said. “If we keep a steady pace we might reach Divinity’s Reach by nightfall. We are going to reach an inn at the very least and we are going to reach it tonight!”
Daniel looked at me in disbelief.
“Are you serious?!” he exclaimed. “Out of all of the traits of a charr, you had to keep their pride.”
I simply grunted in response with no real significance behind it. In truth I just did not want to sleep on the floor again. Not only that but I also did not want to burden Daniel by adding one more day into our journey.
I began to continue the original course to Divinity’s Reach. Daniel sighed in frustration as he joined my side, and together we both ventured forth.
“Stubborn, stubborn, charr.”
“Oh hush!” I said flicking the back of the Human’s head.