Palacia Varius Savat [A Rama Empire short story]

"Ket Savat'Ilen Tekir, the saying went. The Goddess Ket Savat thirsts, and that usually meant for blood."

Almost four centuries have passed since the Craft Plague, and yet there is still one society where mage craft is still accepted and used. The Blades of Ket Savat are still thriving in the palace deep beneath Cahl's capital, carrying out their assassin work in the streets above.

Rohen is one of the Goddess' Blades, and one of her best assassins. He is firmly devoted to the Goddess ideals, but as the world changes, doubt flourishes. When you have to chose between home and work, both in the name of Ket Savat, how do you know your gods are even there?

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7. Part VI

A curse escaped Rohen's lips as he swung himself over the edge of a bridge, and onto one of the rafters beneath it. Once settled so that he would not plunge into the water below, he held still, hoping not to be discovered by those chasing him.

Multiple stomps sounded above him, and he held his breath lightly to mask the sound of his breathing.

Some of them stopped. Listened. Looked.

Then they continued onwards as the guards thought they found another trace of their quarry, or decided he must have gotten ahead of them.

Rohen allowed himself to breathe again, leaning into the masonry of the bridge. When he turned his head, he could see his mirror image in river. It's waters were so still and slow, that the surface was almost motionless. His own eyes stared up at him from the surface, dark and serious, much like the one he could see in the pond back in the Palacia.

The easiest way to handle the situation, would be to go back home, wait for a few days, and return to finish the job. But he cringed on the inside at the idea of leaving it unfinished.

His other option was to get back in there, and finish what he started. He just had not expected the nobleman to hire so many guards. Nor to have them posted right by his bed during his wedding nigt! Who in their right mind did such a thing? Not that the bride had seemed entirely scandalised. She had been eyeing some of the guards in a way that clearly said, that it was not her elderly groom she was thinking about. The guards had not all been entirely unaffected either.

In fact, that had almost made Rohen's job easier, as he made his way into the dressing room of the nobleman's quarters unnoticed.

The trouble had started when one of the guards turned his head, and Rohen had to take half a step out of sight. When he did so, the floor beneath him creaked, and for a moment, he hoped they would mistake it for the bed. But the guardsman took a step forward, to make sure, and Rohen had reached for the shadows to make him invisible. The tendrils had started enveloping him, just as the guard caught sight of him.

The man had roared like an angry boar, and his suntanned face had gone complete red.

"Assassin!" he screamed.

The following chase and the angry shouts about mage craft and murder was hectic and chaotic. On his way out of a window, Rohen accidentally kicked over a gold chamber pot, and it made enough noise to wake the dogs in the kennel. And the stench alone had been enough for Rohen to make an extra long jump out the window.

The guards had followed, more had come running to from the perimeter, and in the end, Rohen found his place under the bridge. Dogs barked furiously when they were let loose on his tail.

Dania would laugh at me, he thought with a wry smile. She'd say something about how I'm supposed to be experienced, and how this wouldn't have happened to her.

In a strange way, he looked forward to it.

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