Saturday, February 18, 2017

Ch. 4, Page 23

The familiar of Erac's Cousin finished changing back into the form of a dog, as it wanted its sense of smell heightened for tracking. Almost immediately, it smelled Ehlissa. Without Ehlissa to follow, it would not have known where in the tower the Mage was...but with Ehlissa here, it would be easy to follow her scent straight to the Mage.


Ehlissa stood there for a moment, paralyzed by surprise. She had suspected there was something no good in the jar Erac's Cousin had given her, but she never expected to see the Mage collapse from it. Her first concern was that he was dead. Then her second concern was that he was dead and she had helped kill him.  Her third concern was that he was dead -- and she would be found with his body!

Ehlissa gathered her wits quickly and realized that she didn't actually know he was dead. He was lying very still, but from this angle, she could not tell if he was still breathing.

Drawing closer to the burnt incense in the brazier that took out the Mage would be foolhardy without some precaution. Luckily she had a handkerchief upon her person. As she covered her nose and mouth, she crept closer, hearing her own heart pounding in her chest. In fact, that might have been why she did not notice right away the soft padding of pawed feet in the hallway...


Saturday, February 4, 2017

Ch. 4, Page 22

To the casual observer, Erac's Cousin appeared to be just standing idly, perhaps admiring the nearby garden. The smile on his face was far from one of contentedness, but a malevolent smirk of wicked satisfaction. And his thoughts did not even need to stray back very far to recall why he was satisfied...




Sunday, January 22, 2017

Ch. 4, Page 21

Ehlissa lifted the small vase out of her purse. She had not had the chance to examine it, but she noticed now how light it felt. It was made of blue ceramic with decorative etchings all around it.

The Mage of the Tower was less interested in the vase than an excuse to draw closer to this charming young maiden. He barely paid attention to the markings on the vase, as his lecherous brain was busy trying to come up with a plan for exploiting this girl's desperate need for information from him...


Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Ch. 4, Page 20

The Tower Mage grabbed his hat; he always felt more important wearing his hat. And, if he was going to make a good impression on this charming young lass, he needed to look very important indeed.

Monday, December 26, 2016

Ch. 4, Page 19

The doorman stood and opened the front door. Ehlissa was waiting on the other side.

"Please," Ehlissa said, "I need to speak to the Mage of the Tower."

The doorman looked around. He spotted Erac's Cousin, but Erac's Cousin was standing some distance back, on the edge of the lonely avenue that led down to the tower, petting an ugly-looking dog and not otherwise conspicuous.

"Do you have an appointment?" the doorman asked Ehlissa.

"No -- but this is very important. And, I have a gift for him," Ehlissa added.

The doorman seemed to mull it over for a moment, then stepped back inside .

Ehlissa considered putting her foot in the doorway, but the doorman was just stepping back to pull the door open wider. She turned and glanced back at Erac's Cousin, who was now watching her and gave her an encouraging smile and a nod.


Friday, December 9, 2016

Ch. 4, Page 18

Ehlissa took the strange jar and placed it in her purse.

"Good!" Erac's Cousin said with a broad grin. "I know he'll enjoy it. Now, what story should I tell you...?"

Erac's Cousin had turned them around and walked them back up Craftsman's Way towards the Petite Bazaar.  "Ah, I have it. How about the time Erac's family was entertaining distant relatives from Ket? That was a good year. They were rich merchants and had brought gifts for everyone..."

Erac's Cousin, Ehlissa had to confess to herself, was a good storyteller. He took ordinary events and infused them with humor, suspense, and witty asides. She barely noticed reaching the Garden Gate.

"Business within?" a sentry asked.

"Business with the Sage of the Tower," Erac's Cousin said.

"You may pass."

But they had not gone far when there was some excitement back at the gate.

"Keep that ugly dog out!" A sentry was shouting.

"Wait, wait!" Erac's Cousin shouted and he went back to the gate. "The dog is with me! Please, allow it through and *ahem* perhaps a small token of thanks for your patience..." he said as he pressed a gold orb into the hand of the two nearest sentries.

"Keep that mutt close by you..." one of the sentries grumbled, but the dog passed unhindered.

Ehlissa had been watching Erac's Cousin. She was not happy with how casually he bribed the authorities, but his concern for his dog was oddly touching.

"Now, where was I with that story? Oh yes..."


     

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Ch. 4, Page 17

Ehlissa was troubled and could barely sleep all that night. Her dreams became anxious nightmares about where Erac was and what secrets Erac's Cousin was keeping.

By morning, Ehlissa felt so frantic that she decided she had to get away. She might not go as far as Elmshire and seek help from Tenser, but if she went out into the countryside for a day, maybe she could clear her head and come up with a good excuse for her absence later.

It was a sound enough plan. The problem was, Ehlissa never made it to the city's gate.