"Rayna run into the nearest building to you, I will cause a distraction so you can get to the northern entrance gate. A horse will be a better choice now since it's going to be a long chase," Mouse explained. Rayna didn't even bother replying and ran for the building right next to her. Bursting in through the wooden door, breaking it off its hinges. Just before there was another explosion behind her landing in-between the cart and entrance of the door. She rolled forward avoiding the blast.
Are they trying to blow me and these people to pieces? She thought as she got to her feet and began to run up the stairs. The house shook violently under the constant attack. Her heart quickened to a deadly rate as she struggled to make her way through the stairs. The very thought of the house collapsing under her was enough reason she couldn't stop.
Two other explosions followed, but they were less of a threat, unlike the previous ones. The gasps and screams of the families filled her ears as she ran past the rooms each filled with people all having the same look of horror on their faces. She moved with so much speed that all they saw was a white blur. By the time she got to the last floor, the attacks had stopped and she used the window of the last room to climb up to the roof.
Once there she could see the dozens of horsemen all dressed in guard uniforms gathered in front of the house. She had grabbed a small cloth from one of the rooms, using it to cover her face and hair. It would be much more troublesome if they recognized her face. She scanned the crowd that gathered below, none of them even spared a glance at the assaulted building below her. Parts of the building had already crumbled in on itself, the building had tilted on its side causing an imbalance in the structure. The building looked even more worn down than it was before.
"You there! Thief you have been suspected of stealing a precious item from our important guests. Come down and surrender at once!" ordered one of the guards wearing medaled shoulder pads coupled with a red and green strap across his shoulders, most likely the lieutenant officer. Rayna looked him confused at first as to what he was talking about but then she saw the Blonde from the bar in the midst of the riders, smirking at her.
She immediately realized it must have been a lie he told the guards but then he must have been an important person for them to be willing to destroy their own city for him. She was disappointed with their tactics, the lives of their own people meant nothing to them. While she took lives for a living she saw no need to add unnecessary casualties to the mix.
Rayna reply was cut short when suddenly an explosion erupted on the far side of the city, towards the governor's building and two other important buildings. The guard's faces all fell pale as they watched part of the governor's building crumble on its side. The chief officer raced immediately to that direction taking more than half of the guards with him.
"Nice one Mouse," Rayna used this opportunity to run but instead of going in her initial direction she ran back in the direction she came. The confused look on the blonde's face when he saw she move in that direction quickly changed to a frown like he just realized something. He yelled urging the rest of the men to fire at her direction. Rayna dodged every bullet and net- as stray as they were- thrown at her while hopping from one building to the next coming close to the curve at the end of the street.
She spotted a farm man herding three horses as they were approaching the curve. A bullet grazed her left arm as she attempted to jump to the last building. She turned spotting the Blonde running closer to her location than the rest. She immediately threw three daggers in his direction targeting his eyes, heart, and chest. He would be distracted even if he did manage to dodge them.
By the time she finally got to the last building on the street, she heard shouting and the sound of a loud ticking trigger echoed. She instantly jumped off the building just as there was an explosion behind her. She landed on a large grey horse that was the last on the line, almost falling off.
Regaining her posture she pulled the leather strap attached to the horse, unbuckling it from the center log connecting the horses to the farmer's carriage. She reeled the horse out of the line, urging it to run straight into the nearby street. It didn't take long for the other horses to follow, six of them followed behind her, lead by the Blonde.
Rayna kept a steady distance from them throughout the race even as she maneuvered through small alleys between houses and clustered streets filled with people. After a long chase, the northern district's gate was in view now. She picked up her speed racing almost twice as fast but the gates were closing faster, no doubt the doing by the infamous Blonde.
Rayna was minutes from getting to the gate when a child ran out of nowhere into the street right in front of her horse. She quickly tried to stop the horse causing it to reel backwards and lose its balance. Dropping both it and Rayna to the ground hard.
The six horses picked up their speeds almost immediately after drawing closer to her by the second. Due to the sudden fall, the horse had landed on her right arm almost crushing it under own its weight. She desperately pulled at her hand, ignoring the tearing pain that came with it. She looked up to search for the child but she was nowhere to be seen. By the time she finally pulled it out, the gates were already closed and the other horses were barely seconds away from her.
She got to her feet moving in staggered movement as she made her way to the foot of the forest hill beside the high gate. With one glance back, she began climbing the inclined hill. Just minutes after she heard horses stop at the foot of the hill. Of all the times she had come close to the authorities, she always got away unhinged. Only this time she was almost convinced that she was going to be caught that day. She hid behind the thick bushes, in an attempt to calm her heavy breathing.
"Get a hold of yourself, Rayna. You have been through much worse and still came out alive," she tried to convince herself but even with that she had no idea what to do next. The gate walls were built almost fifty meters high all around the central district. No person could survive a drop from there, not even the rumored Victor's descendants, the only way through is the gate but that was closed. The grounds would be flooded with guards any time soon. With her right hand disabled, taking all of them on would be suicide. Every minute she wastes narrows down her chances of winning and with Mouse not being in contact distance, she was on her own.
"Why don't you come out and let's end this ridiculous chase," said an all too familiar voice come from the distance. "You must know that there are no more other options... Why don't you be a good assassin and surrender," Rayna made no reply as she moved deeper towards the top of the hill.
"Look I'm just trying to reason with you here, you put up a hard chase I'll give you that but the gig is up so why don't you end this wannabe avenger game you're playing..." he said, his voice was slowly getting lower and colder, "Did you actually think you were helping them? Righting wrongs? Give me a break, all you do is get commissioned killings and get paid at the end by your clients. Isn't that right?" he said yelling the last words. Rayna froze where she stood not because of what he said but because she remembered something that could save her.
She dipped her hand into her the small pouch tied to her left thigh, where she keeps the little things she found useless but couldn't throw away. She crouched down bringing out a thin wooden whistle encased in silver and bronze iron cravings. It had some strangely written language written on it, probably from the old teachings.
It was given to her as payment when she saved an old scholar from almost being killed by wildlings a while ago. She didn't want to take it, at first, convinced it was useless but the old man complied her to. he promised that once used a winged Sephur would come in an instant to her aid and will do want ever asked of it but this magic only works once so she was cautioned to use it wisely. She didn't believe it, Sephurs were only things of fairy tales told to children back in the days but like the old teachings, they were irrelevant in today's world.
She had dumped it in her pouch thinking she never had to use but looking at it now, it was the only thing she could bet her life on. She blew softly into the tip but it made no sound, she tried again harder but was still no sound. All she could do was hope it worked because the moment after one of the guards had spotted her and signaled for the others. She had to run to the main path where the not so friendly Blonde awaited.
"So you finally decided to show yourself, huh?" he said with a small smirk spreading at the corner of his lips.
"You called?" she asked mockingly. She had her mocking smirk on, the one that seemed to piss a lot of people off.
"Still feisty I see," he said softly, "I like that." Rayna walked backwards slowly clenching her right arm as he advanced towards her.
"Now that you finally have my attention, why have you been chasing after me...? Who are you?"
"The name's Lavi and as for why I have been chasing you through all these districts well, who wouldn't chase after the White Blade?" he said with an obnoxious smug look on his face.
"And what would you want from the White Blade?"
"What any army would want, her skill, her undeniable strength and talent at being a killer of men," Rayna froze, she knew what she did for a living and was fairly content with it. But it was just the way he spoke that struck her but she didn't know why.
"So your way of recruiting me is almost killing me?" she questioned, remembering all the bullets and explosion she had to escape up until now,
"Well, you aren't an easy person to find let alone have a conversation with, I had hold you down first and if incapacitating you was part of it so be it," he said in a nonchalant monotone, "besides I knew you wouldn't die," finishing it with a small smirk.
"With the way you speak, I'm guessing your must be from Fayra-those bloodthirsty bastards-What would a great army like Fayra want from a killer?" she said in a whispered voice.
"Well as you know the Day of the Victors fast approaches and we thought of strengthening our forces. Fayra seeks to take back its glory it lost to Lynnoia all those years ago," he stopped as he saw that Rayna had gotten to the end of the road. "What do you say? How about putting those skills of yours to good use."
Rayna knew she had no intention of being someone's puppet, she never liked that even when was in The Family and her mother raised her not to bow before anyone. Following Levi would the defeat the purpose why she left but in her current position she had no way of refusing. All of sudden a soft screeching roar echoed in her ears followed by a hard gush of wind.
In that moment, she knew her way out had arrived. The old scholar's words echoed in her mind of the fact that only the bearer of the whistle can know the Sephur comes. A small smirk spread on her lips as she walked to the edge of the hill, she turned confidently to the Blonde.
"Hey, whatever you're thinking stop it alright? You maybe fifteen but I'm sure you're not stupid," he said in nervous voice but the look in her was enough to tell him what she going to do.
"The name's Rayna, not White Blade and I'm declining your offer... Blondie," she said and without a moment's delay, she jumped off the ledge face first, cutting Levi's cry short as the sound of the wind filled her ears. She was almost regretting her action when a huge animal caught her on its back. Its body was shaped like a horse but its head was like that of an eagle with a long thin tail at its back.
However, it was its wings that stole the show. Each of them were almost twice the size of the animal, colored in pure silvery white with red and blue shaded patterns on its edges gave almost the illusion of a rainbow in its wake. The color the wings were contrasting the golden brown color of the rest of its body. It indeed looked like a magical creature.
It picked her up and rose to the sky passing the hill's edge in a matter of seconds. Rayna could only get a glimpse at the look of shock and maybe awe that was on Levi's face as she flew past. The winged Sephur stopped rising shortly after and started towards the northern district.