“So what do you think?” I asked Mara who handed a cup of tea to Ferris and me. She sat across from us and began to drink from her own cup.
“I think that you need to stop bringing in random people into my house,” she said obviously upset with Ferris’ presence.
“Fumus trusts him,” I said. “And he’s helping me make sure a flame legion assassin doesn’t come up and stab me in the back.” I said that last sentence with a bit more of a bite that I would have liked, but I was tense. “This is serious Mara, I would really like your opinion.”
“Well it’s insane,” said Mara as she set her cup down. “But… it will work.”
“You can’t be serious!” Said Ferris. “There will be repercussions to this! The legions wi—”
“The legions won’t know,” said Mara. “With Fumus you’re guaranteed to get through it unscathed. Besides they’d already have you at the very least locked up for all the unauthorized operations you’ve been doing for them.”
“Another reason to go with this plan,” I said. “For the most part it benefits everyone.”
“…More or less,” said Mara before taking another sip of tea. “How far ahead have you planned?”
“Quite far,” I said. “I can’t say what happens once everything is said and done, however.”
“That’s for the best,” nodded Mara. “The less people that know the better.” We discussed a few more subtle details of the plan, what role everyone had in it, and what information we could share with each other.
“You’ve given this a lot of thought,” said Ferris. “You would have been better off being an Ash legion operative if you ask me.”
“It’s not like it will matter once everything is done,” I said.
“This is pretty risky, Anavari,” said Mara. “I know this is what you want, and it’ll save you and Garfas from the flame on top of that. But you’re putting us all in some sort of fire with this plan. That’s not even mentioning if we fail.”
“I’ve thought about that,” I reassured. “And I have a way around that. That memory erasing spell you told me about a few years ago. Have you made progress with it?” Mara now understood the importance of her part in the plan, her face grew stern and I could feel her own magic burning within her.
“Yes,” She said with confidence. “Doesn’t work how you’d expect but it will make sure they won’t remember anything we don’t want them to.”
“Excellent,” I said. “This is the first stage of the plan,” I faced Ferris. “Ferris, I need you to take this information to Fumus. Tell him everything we’ve discussed and what I need from him.”
“Right!” Said Ferris before heading out of the hut. I stood from my seat as I combed my claws through my hair. I realized I would have to change it once we succeed… if we succeed. I looked into Mara’s eyes, reaching an understanding. We both knew what this meant, and what could come of it.
“How much time do we have?” she asked.
“About a week,” I said. “Should be more than enough time.”
“Yes,” nodded Mara. “Let’s make it a week worth remembering. We could all die if this doesn’t work out after all.”
“Hope for the best, Mara.” I said.
“Prepare for the worst,” she replied.
I knocked at the door of my own house, realizing how it no longer felt like my own. A sigh escaped me as I went through what I would say to Thoc. I wasn’t given much time, Thoc opened the door, and beamed at me.
“Hey!” He said as he tinkered with the device in his hands. “Glad to see you back here, I was sure you had moved in with Garfas at this point.” He released a hearty chuckle.
“About that…” I said. Thoc’s grin vanished as he noted the seriousness of my voice. “We need to talk.” I went into the house, we had something to eat, and we began to talk. We discussed everything, how long we had been friends, how much I loved Garfas, how much danger him and I were in. Finally, I told him my plan. He listened quietly for the entirety of my plan, not interrupting or objecting.
“And that’s pretty much it,” I said. Thoc did not say anything right away, he leaned back on his chair and looked into the ceiling.
“Well,” he began. “It’ll work.” He returned his gaze at me and smiled. “You really want to go through with this do you?” I simply nodded in reply. “Then go for it. You have my support.”
“You have no objections to it?”
“Well I’m not exactly happy about it for obvious reasons,” said Thoc, keeping his smile. “It’ll be… different, not having you around and all, but this is your life. You need to do what makes you happy, and what kind of friend would I be if I didn’t want you to be happy?” We sat in silence once again, for once he placed down the device he tinkered with. He sat with a big grin on his face, showing off his teeth. Then finally he chuckled.
“What’s so funny?” I asked.
“Just how much we’ve gone through,” replied Thoc. “To be honest I didn’t expect us to be in this situation.”
“It looks like my life is full of the unexpected,” I said as my hand hovered over the center of my chest. “I guess part of me still can’t believe I’m with Garfas, much less acting on this crazy plan of mine.”
“And he’s completely fine with it?” Asked Thoc.
“I haven’t asked him yet,” I said. “But I know he’ll say yes. He’s been searching for something like this, for a long time now. I realize that now.” Thoc stood up and walked over to me, he held open his arms to me, grin as wide as can be. I stood as well and we embraced.
“Thank you,” I said. “For everything.”
“Anytime, Anavari,” said Thoc. “It’s what friend’s do.” We then walked over to the door.
“I suppose I’ll come over for the next few days to pack my things,” I said. “What I need anyway, you can keep the rest.”
“Well you didn’t keep much aside from books and robes so I think packing shouldn’t take long with me helping you. We also have to work hard on warband duties so no one suspects a thing.”
“Right,” I said. “We need to keep the illusion.”
“And you have to hold on to Garfas no matter what,” said Thoc waving his finger. “That charr loves you more than anything, he’d burn the world for you.”
“I know,” I said, feeling my face flush. “I must say I’m a bit nervous now.”
“Don’t be,” Thoc gave my shoulder a squeeze and reassured me with his usual smile. “You have him, you have each other.” I smiled. “Now off with you, go to him.” With that we embraced each other one more time, and I returned to my home.
I found Ferris on the way home, he informed me that I had Fumus’ full support and that he would supply additional agents if necessary. I did not believe that any more would be needed but I kept the option in mind. I told Ferris that I would inform Garfas of the plan in private and that he could inform Tai. We would discuss more intricate details come the morning. It was already dusk and given the constant scrambling around the citadel all day, I wanted some sleep. Upon arriving we found both Tai and Garfas approaching the house, it seemed that they had left for a bit as well. A wide smile spread across Garfas’ face as he saw me, I smiled to him as well, noticing that my tail wanted to coil itself around my leg. I was able to restrain it however, I needed to be composed for this.
“Went off to work on your project again?” I asked as I walked up to Garfas, noticing the large roll of cloth in his arms. It was covering something but there was no shape bulging out of it.
“I’m done actually,” said Garfas, there was a hesitance in his voice. “This is it.” He gestured at the roll in his arms. “I wanted you to be the first to see it.” I was taken aback by the request. I briefly glanced at Tai and Ferris, both were already caught up in their own conversation.
“Of course,” I said. As Garfas opened the door to his house. “I wanted to ask you something in private too.”
“To the bedroom then?” Asked Garfas. I nodded and followed him upstairs. I closed the door behind us and Garfas went ahead and placed the roll on the bed.
“So what was this project you’ve been working on for months now?” I asked as I sat at the edge of the bed.
“It’s something for you actually,” said Garfas with a bashful smile. “U-um, don’t take this the wrong way. I put a lot of work and effort into it and all, but this is something I hope you never get to use.” I looked at the roll curiously as he edged it closer to me and then began to unravel it. I could feel the solid object behind the cloth, I had an idea as to what he had made, but the expectation was shattered as fully unwrapped the blade within. I knew it was a sword of course, he had been training me to use them all this time. What was truly unexpected was when I drew the blade from its sheath.
It was beautiful. The forked blade was long, almost half my size, and as wide as my hand. An intricate myriad of swirls and spirals traveled down the blade, layers upon layers of black lines danced along the surface, only breaking for the sharp edge. The hilt was quite long, enough to hold with both hands. Despite being a large sword I could still hold it with just one hand, it felt as if it fit me perfectly. It was made for me.
“Garfas,” I said, trying to find the right words. “I don’t know what to say…”
“Channel your magic into it,” said Garfas, smiling at my reactions. I looked at him, not quite sure as to what he was leading to, but I began to channel my energy into it regardless. Sparks of emerald magic began to dance around the blade, causing it to hum with energy. The blade was acting like a focus for my energy, and it was by design. It was… incredible. It was a display of countless emotions that had manifested into something material. I place the sword back into its sheath. I stood up and looked at Garfas.
“Garfas,” I said, breathing in deeply. “Will you marry me?”
“Yes,” he said, knowing I wasn’t done.
“And will you leave the citadel with me?”