[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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5. Part IV

It was about the magical being Rohen laid his eyes on that evening, in the middle of one of the Palacia's small yards. Magic and the scent of irises were heavy in the air, as she gracefully moved through the exercises, warming up her body. Rohen wondered how anyone could think that those like her did not belong among the Blades. The deadly precision in her every motion, the cool dark green of her eyes, made it clear to everyone that she was a weapon. A blade.

Dania raised her arm and unfurled her fingers with the elegance of a dancer. Slowly, she turned the hand, and light glinted in the shadows that gathered there, taking the shape of a blade. Hard and cool, like black glass, she could still unmake it at will, erasing all evidence of having ever had a weapon. Turning, her other hand held a similar weapon, albeit it was longer.

Step for step, she glided through the attack and defence patterns, fluid like the shadows that wafted off of her tattoos.

Rohen watched her, entranced and enchanted.

She glanced at him over her shoulder, a teasing smile spreading on her lips. In a few steps, and with raised fingertips, she let herself fall forward into a shadow on the ground. She disappeared in those billowing tendrils of darkness.

A moment later, she stepped out behind him. The cool edge of her knife kissed his neck, as he closed his eyes and leaned back against her body.

“Keep still, or you're dead,” she whispered.

He chuckled and opened his eyes. In a swift motion, he had his hand under her arm, and tipped away her blade from himself. Already he had a dagger in his free hand, and blocked her next attack fluidly. She moved back, out into the yard, and he followed.

It was a dance to them. Always had been. Always would be. He ducked, and she cut the air above his head. She leapt, and he kicked out to sweep her legs away.

“One day I'll claim your life,” Dania threatened him, laughing as she did so, and avoided another one of his swings.

“One day I may give it to you willingly,” Rohen said, and caught one of her wrists. In a twirl she had her blade at his throat again, her eyes seeking his, their breaths coming fast.

“Is that a promise?” she asked him.

Rohen let his blade fall, ignored the sting as hers nicked his skin, and leaned in to kiss her. His lips were hard, his hands calloused, as he drew her in.

“Might be,” he told her when he let go.

She narrowed her eyes, though the corner of her lips turned up in invitation once more. She shook her head, her hair dancing as she did so, and held up her hands. The blades returned to the shadows.

“It's a promise,” she decided, and walked away.

Rohen watched her go, and saw no need to correct her.

She was right.

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