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Boaz

Just something I wrote.

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Two loves-

 

Moonlight bathed the white marble balcony of the tower in soft radiance as Rathlin waited for Starlight to join him. He turned as he heard her footfalls behind him and his heart jumped in his chest, just as it had every time he had ever looked upon her. Even after 8 years of marriage her beauty stole his breath away.

“"Love, your garden is more beautiful every year."” She said as she slipped an arm around him and enjoyed the smell of jasmine on the soft breeze.

“"Are you fishing for complements again? You know I use you as my inspiration. Now tell me about how your day went, did your visit with the King go well?

“Come inside and try my newest creation. I do think it will be my greatest masterpiece,"” Rathlin said after a few minutes of talking with Starlight. “Now you must drink all of it to enjoy the full effect of the infusions."” He stated as he walked to the side table and poured some wine into a crystal glass.

“"Ah this really is exquisite my love. Even better than the white you created last year. Do I detect a trace of honey? Strange, I am starting to feel …. rather…er.. woozy.. yet very happy"…”

Rathlin leaped forward and slowly laid his love upon the soft Jarthyll carpet. “"Ah my love. I am so very sorry. I wish this could be any other way. You know that I love you, love you more than anything, but this I must do."”

“"Must do… do what….what is happening"

Rathlin leans down as his wife’s voice gets softer and softer and takes her into his arms.. holding her close.

“"It has been ordered, tonight is the night. You are the first, the very first, I demanded that honor. I wish it could be any other way.. You don’t know how many times I wished you were not a mage. How many nights I spent in the garden tending the flowers while crying over what I knew must come. Yes they knew I would do what I must, but he also understood he couldn't make me not love you."”

“"I… do… do not under.. st… and.."”

“"It is best if you don't fully understand my love, it is best. I will stay here with you till the end. I have loved you from the moment I saw you, and always will. It should be gentle, the full affect of the draught is to create joy and happiness even as your body succumbs. It should be over in just a moment my love."…”

The last thing Starlight feels as the darkness encloses her is Rathlin’s tears upon her face, and an unreasonable joy in her heart.

If any of Xon’s city guards had looked closely the next morning they might have noticed the strained look on Rathlin's face as he left the city. But ones such as they try to stay out of way of people like the King's personal vintager, especially when he is married to one of the King's magic council. If they had looked maybe one would have noticed the bag of holding situated to look like a coin purse.. and maybe even what looked like the outline of a figurine within the bag.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A helping hand-

BOOM! BOOM! “"I'm coming, I'm coming. And when I get down there be warned that there will be one more frog in this world".” BOOM! BOOM! “"I said I am coming please quit beating on my door."”

The front door to the tower flew open and a small wizened man look up at Thad with death in his eyes. “"It is 3am. Your reasons for bothering me at this time better be good and profitable."”

“"I am sorry sir, I am. It is my daughter, sir. She is deathly ill, she went into the woods mushroom hunting, I think she ate something that is gonna kill her."” Thad said as he stood in the night wringing his hands.

“"Well then, I suggest you go to Mother Lesha and ask for her help."”

Thad barely got his foot between the door and the frame as it was slammed shut, “"Please! Sir the mother is gone to one of the farms..a birth I hear..and well you being in the herb business, you probably know as much as she does.."”

“"As much? Hah! More than she does.. but a butcher can't afford my fee in the daylight, let alone after dark. Leave before I report you to the guards!"”

“"Please sir. She is my only child, she is going to die. I can afford to pay! Anything you demand can be paid if you just give me time."” Thad pulled his foot from the door and looked with pleading in his eyes at the mage.

The old man fully intended to slam the door into the fool's face, when an image of the daughter flashed before his eyes. Sixteen with a doe's eyes and hair like ripe wheat. Always too good for an old man, turning down his advances these last four years. “"Anything? Well your daughter is old enough now to pay her own way in this world. Do you agree that she will pay as only she can? Do you?"” the old man said with a leer that left no doubt what was being bargained for.

“"Sir? Ye..Yes sir. If that will save her life. You leave me no choice." The old man noticed that Thad couldn't even look into his eyes, probably filled with shame, simpleton.

“"Good, Good. Then go home and make sure your daughter understands her part of the bargain. I will collect my things and be there shortly."” The door slammed almost before the last words were said.

 

“"Let me look at her. Ah yes. A fever followed by chills, shallowness of breath, and a blue tinge to the lips. I do believe I know what she ate and have the cure right here."” These people, always so simple thinking they know what they are doing and eating something that kills them. The Mage thought to himself.

“"Oh, sir! I just knew you could cure her.” Thad couldn't help but notice how the old mages eyes were plastered closer to his daughter's body than her sweat soaked nightshirt. Or how his touch was more like a lover's than a care givers. It took every ounce of his strength not to hit the old man right there."

“"Now don't forget our agreement of payment. I think I will take a small advance right now."” The old man said as he leaned over for a kiss.

As he rose back up he noticed that the butcher was very near, but then again he had been hovering like a mother hen during the whole visit. The blow to the back of his head knocked him back down over the daughter. As he tried to rise and figure out what happened, the daughter's hands snaked out and grabbed his long hair. As he began to flail, a second blow landed and he slumped unconscious.

“"Thank you. He was much tougher than he looks. Now get some sleep, it looks like he knew what he was doing, so no need for you to take the antidote. I need to start getting rid of the body. Sleep well darling."” Thad leaned down and placed a kiss on his daughter's forehead and thought about how lucky a man would be one day to have her as a wife. Smart, pretty, and plenty of sand.

“"Now my friend, time for the payment you got coming to ya."” Everyone that knows Thad knows how he loves to whistle while he works. Tonight was no exception and a merry little tune could be heard coming from the butchering room, punctuated by the sounds of a heavy cleaver.

 

The next day at the town watch.-

 

“"Well it all checks out, sergeant. Thad's daughter shows signs of food poisoning and Mother Lesha confirms that she was sick and then treated. Thad swears that Mage Roderick left his house around 4am."”

“"Well, Investigator, do we have any confirmation on his story?"”

“"The tanner across the street. He swears he saw the old mage walking down the street at about the time Thad claims he left."”

“"Do you believe him?"”

“"Sir, the tanner hates Thad more than anything in this world. If he had known what was going on I am sure he would have lied and said he heard screams coming from the house. I believe that he really did see, or thinks he saw Roderick leaving this morning. Plus Thad has been living here since before his daughter was born. And not once has there been any problems, except for that tanner fighting"”

“"So Roderick isn't at home, he didn't show up at the council meeting and no one in town has seen him. What do you think?"”

“"Well sir. He has been known to bug out for a week or so at a time. Remember we had to send a couple of men to bring him back from Stag village the summer all the boys were sent off for military training. I figure he is somewhere with lots of girls and beer and won't come back till we hear of it or he tires of it."” The sergeant ignored the added “"Dirty old pervert."

“"We will keep the file open, but feel free to tell Thad it looks like he is off the hook."”

“"Yes sir. I was planning on going that way anyway, he had some pretty nice meat hanging."”

“"Hah! I am certain a chance to see the daughter again has nothing to do with it. Dismissed."”

Edited by Boaz

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Nice mini-stories Boaz, thanks for sharing them. :-) The twists in the respective stories were cool, with Raithlin's betrayal in the first tale feeling more sad and personal than Thad's calculated plan in the second story. One thing that I have a hard time figuring out is how the two stories are tied together... they both involve mages being killed through trickery, but if there's some way that the characters or events of the first story interconnect with the second, then I must have not been reading close enough to catch it! Still, I liked these generally, and it might even be cool to see one of them expanded into a longer and more detailed story at some point. :-) I've got my fingers crossed, anyway.

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