[Completed] Palacia Varius Savat [A Rama Empire short story]

“Ket Savat'Ilen Tekir, the saying went. The Goddess Ket Savat thirsts, and always for blood.”

Almost four centuries have passed since the Craft Plague, but in the underground palace of the Assassins' Goddess, magic still flourishes. The Blades of Ket Savat still exists deep below the streets of Ilianril, and carry out their work in the houses above.

Rohen is a Blade of the Goddess, and skilled at what he does. He is firmly devoted to his people and his home, but as the outside world changes, so does the one in the underground palace- How can you trust in a Goddess, when you no longer trust her people to do right?

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2. Part I

Palacia Varius Savat

Ilianril, Capital of Cahl

(366 p. CP)

 

Sethlen Shearok had not been a slender man, and so his corpse was heavy. Up into the air it went, hoisted by the curtain noose around his neck. A neck cut open, so that blood ran down the front of his robes and ended up dripping from the body's toes, pooling on the cold marble floor. His assassin grunted, and tied the golden curtain rope off on the nearby rail. The job had been quick, and the kill easy. The weather outside dour.

Rohen closed his eyes, whispering a short prayer to his Goddess, and sighed. As always his victim had felt no pain despite his bloody demise and the gruesome sight he now made, hanging from the ceiling. Soon the daughter would arrive, with her husband, to have lunch with the old wool merchant.

Rohen left the way he came, out through the window, and up the wall onto the roof. His booted feet navigated the wet clay tiles with practised ease, and he jumped to the neighbour house with no fear of falling. From roof to roof he made his way, all but invisble to the people below- People rarely look up. And should they see him, they would only know his cloak and not his face. When he reached one of the older buildings, with wide windowsills on the outside of the windows, he smiled.

Gathering his feet, arms stretched out like winds, he leapt from the building's roof. Wind tore at his clothes and cloak as he plunged towards the ground, several dragon lengths beneath him. He turned in the air, grabbing onto a windowsill for a moment only, to slow the fall and leap off of the wall. Calling to the magic in his blood, he felt the tattoo on his shoulders start burning, and the wind whisper as his fall slowed further. With an almost soundless thud, he landed on the tip of his toes, knees bending and fingers pressing onto the cobble stones beneath him.

The fabric itched as he straightened his tunic and his cloak, and a mere moment later he left the alley and slipped unseen into the masses. The hood kept his face in shadows, and his features unclear. Bandages and long pants hid the tattoos that would have otherwise given him away, and which only left unmarked his face, his palms and the soles of his feet. Even his neck they covered, and secret runes had been written over his ribs and legs. The cloak billowed around his feet as he walked down the streets of Ilianril. The rain stained the cloth darker in ever growing patches.

A scream went up a block or so away, followed by shouts of alarm.

They must have found the merchant, Rohen thought with grim satisfaction. A job well done.

He turned another corner, into the shadows of yet another alley. At the back wall he reached out his fingertips and called to the shadows there. He felt the tendrils reach out, take him, and allow him to melt away. The call of mage craft dragged him through the cool darkness and back to where the shadow gate had been bound.

Nobody would ever find out who murdered the late wool merchant from Molterain, but they would all know what: The Blades of Ket Savat. The assassins of the Goddess.

The shadow painted.

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