(Part 11) For a complete list of this series, please go here.
“Your reward?” the Blood Elf guard scoffed. He still covered his nose and mouth with his hand as he attempted to peer inside the bag.
Aerissa nodded, catching her breath as she retrieved a folded piece of parchment from her pack. She shook it open, holding it out to the guards. “Yes, my reward.”
The elven guard snapped the parchment from her hand, scanning over the wanted poster. He raised his brow, eying Aerissa with new interest as he handed the poster over to the Forsaken guard. The Forsaken guard bobbed his head as he looked over the poster. He stepped forward, opening the bag and peering in. He stared intently into the bag for a few moments before giving Aerissa a wicked smile.
“Come, let's deliver these to Deathstalker Rathiel. He will want these right away.” He closed the bag, hefting it over his shoulder. The Blood Elf guard gagged from the smell, his face extremely pale. The Forsaken guard chuckled as he headed up the path, Aerissa and Locke following close behind.
“Forgive me, Guard, but I am not familiar with that title…Deathstalker. What rank is that?” Aerissa tried to keep pace with him, but kept lagging behind after a few matched steps. Her weary legs were no comparison to his.
“Rank?” he chuckled, shaking his head. “You have not heard of the Deathstalkers or Darkstalkers? I suppose maybe not by the looks of ya. Deathstalkers are a…. ‘special' guild that reports to dreadlord Varimathras. He, who serves our Lady Sylvanas.”
Aerissa felt a chill travel up her spine. She did not respond to the guard, but exchanged a brief look with Locke.
I am not familiar with them either, Aerissa.
Just as Aerissa began to grow anxious from the silence, they reached the heart of Tranquillien. The Forsaken guard went beyond the Inn to another building that was surrounded by guards and other personnel. They approached a lone Forsaken that was off to the side of the building, sharpening his weapon.
“Deathstalker Rathiel, sir. This elf brings you something of great interest.” He dropped the bag at Rathiel's feet, opening it wide.
“What do we have here,” He stared into the bag. He let out an unintelligible noise as he reached into the bag, withdrawing one of the heads. He held it up high, inspecting it. Aerissa coughed and gagged at the sight and smell of the heads. Watching the blood and puss ooze out of the neck and over Rathiel's hand was almost more than she could stomach. “Who did this?” he asked of the guard.
The guard motioned at Aerissa, cracking a grin. “Hard to believe, but this Elf has brought you those heads.”
“You?” He looked at Aerissa, snorting with disbelief. “You expect me to believe this?”
Aerissa straightened her shoulders, holding her head up high. “Yes sir, Deathstalker Rathiel. I saw the wanted poster a few days ago. Locke and I,” she gestured at the Lynx beside her, “hunted them down and have brought back their heads as proof.”
Deathstalker Rathiel dropped the head back into the bag before marching up to her, staring intently into her eyes. He was inches from her face as he took in every detail about her. “Tell me again, did you do this?”
Aerissa swallowed nervously. “Y-yes,” she stammered, “it was I and my companion that brought them to their fate.”
Staring into her eyes, he nodded. Then, he stepped over to Locke, crouching down to examine him. “You speak the truth. I can see it in your eyes. And believe me, I know lying eyes. Well done, miss…”
“Aerissa,” she bowed her head respectfully.
“Well done, Aerissa. I shall inform the people of Tranquillien of your good deed and bring you your reward in the morning. For now, it is clear you must rest. Go, now, to the Inn.”
Aerissa frowned with displeasure, “The morning? Why must I wait-”
He held up his hand, “I do not carry such handsome rewards on my person. I shall get it for you by the morning. I can secure you a room if that is your concern.” Reaching into his pocket, he withdrew a few coins.
“I already have a room, thank you. I will come to you in the morning then,” sighing she knew she could not make him give her the reward now. She only hoped he would not claim it as his own.
“No, I will come to the Inn at dawn's light,” and with that, he turned away from her, tying the bag closed again.
Aerissa and Locke trudged their way to the Inn. The door creaked as they entered, but most of the patrons had long since gone to their rooms. The common area was empty save for a few people. The smells of the Inn filled Aerissa's nostrils, giving her a sense of comfort and familiarity.
“We be all full-” Twyla hobbled out from the kitchen, wiping her hands in a towel. “Rissy! Ye and Locke are back, are ya? Look at ya both. A bit o' wear ‘n tear I dare say.” She patted Locke on the head and patted Aerissa on the back.
“Hi Twyla, I told you we'd be back!” Aerissa smiled widely, feeling as though she was visiting a grandmother. “We had success and expect our reward to be delievered in the morning. Did you keep our room for us?”
“Of course, deary. We be full, ‘cept yer room. I held it as promised, I did.” She smiled, glad to see them back and relatively unharmed.
“Thank you, Twyla.” Aerissa patted the Forsaken woman's arm. “I am beat and looking forward to a bed. Please fetch us at dawn's light, will you?” Aerissa watched as Locke started up the stairs towards their room.
“Dawn's light? Back to ye chores so fast, my dear?” Twyla cackled, tossing the towel over her shoulder.
Aerissa shook her head with a sheepish smile. “Actually, Locke and I will be expecting Deathstalker Rathiel at that time. I don't want to miss his arrival or make him wait.”
Twyla nodded. “Of course, course… now get ye some proper sleep.” She patted Aerissa on the back before shuffling back into the kitchen.
Aerissa climbed the stairs quietly, not wishing to disturb any of the residents. Locke laid in wait before the door to their room. Aerissa let out a loud sigh as she turned the key in the lock, opening the door. Shedding her weapons and leather armor, she stretched out onto the bed. Locke circled the floor next to the bed once, twice, three times before laying down. Aerissa turned onto her side, snuggling her cheek into the pillow. She draped an arm over the side of the bed, softly petting Locke. His chest and throat rumbled to life with a deep purr, which soothed Aerissa as she drifted off to sleep.
** Please note that some of the events included in RP pieces are based upon actual in-game role play. Also, some of the events and/or character names may have been altered during the transition from in-game RP to story formation. **
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