Author: Demon Lord D (D魔王)
Editor: None – Still looking for one, contact me if interested!
Chapter 3: To Coffins
Carrying a large bag over his shoulder, the mercenary knocked on the back door of the “Mermaid Brothel”, someone looked out.
“I’m here to see ‘that’ person.”
“I’ll go look.”
Golden Tooth Shark leaned against the wall, his mind filled with images of gold, several long minutes was spent like that.
After a while, someone finally came to lead him in, they finally arrived at a door at the end after walking through a long winding corridor.
“You’re finally here” In the room, the man wearing a mask placed down his cup of tea, he said lightly, “only you?”
Golden Tooth Shark cursed in his mind, but he remained respectful on the surface, even revealing a speck of sorrow, “Very sorry. The elf was more difficult to deal with that imagined. His resistance was fierce, my companions…were not so fortunate.”
The man made a non-committal humming sound, pointing at the floor, “Put it down.”
Golden Tooth Shark carefully lifted the bag down from his shoulder, as if placing down some priceless antique. At the same time his gaze had shifted to the wooden box at the corner by the wall several times.
“It’s in the box”
“Hem, other than the agreed upon amount, I need to give pensions for their families…”
“A total of four hundred gold. Take it and leave.”
Not waiting for the man to finish, the mercenary was already by the box, displaying his agility as a bandit fully. Opening the box, he knelt in an almost pious position, plunging both hands into the golden coins. Then taking a handful out, kissed at it repeatedly.
Then he fell over in that blissful position, started to twitch, his eyes rolled back, lips turning an unnatural shade of black.
The man watched this scene silently, after a while, he pulled on the summoning bell.
An hour later, the back door of the Mermaid Brothel opened again, two coffins were pushed out one after the other. Four of the brothel’s employees walked sleepily alongside, because this type of job paid well, so no one complained about their sleep being disrupted.
The destination was two streets away, one of the places where bodies were gathered for incineration in the city. As to who died, they didn’t know, nor did they care to know.
The morgue was not large, there was no one inside, just a few oil lamps releasing a dim light. The employees put down the coffins, their minds already on the warmth of the bed, they left at the same speed they came.
Soon after, a shadowed figure silently drifted in.
It was a young man around twenty, carrying a sword. After he investigated the area, he came up to one of the coffins, lifting the lid.
A stench blew into his face.
In the coffin, Golden Tooth Shark’s body was already changing colour.
The young man grimaced, closed the lid, and turned to the other one.
The moment the lid opened, a hand reached out, grasped the young man’s wrist, and twisted it to one side extremely fast. In order to prevent from having his wrist dislocated, the youth could only follow along by falling down. Incidentally the coffin’s owner didn’t plan to let him go, immediately leaping out to straddle him, the other hand trapping the young man’s throat.
“Really Ellen, this sort of greeting, isn’t it a little too exciting.” Looking at the elf’s angry expression, the young man said helplessly.
The elf was black for a moment, “Who are you?”
He had never see this person before, but the voice was indeed strangely familiar. Unless…
“At your service, Sir” Cain replied happily, “now can you get off of me, sir?”
“How were you able to find this place?” Ellen hesitated for a moment, pulling Cain up.
“That,” Cain nursed his wrist, “Because when I returned to the Mercenary’s Home, I saw Golden Tooth Shark asking around for your location.”
“This man?” Ellen pointed to the coffin.
Cain nodded, “Anyways, I didn’t think you would lose to those small fry so I didn’t interfere. Finally when I didn’t see either of you by late night, I figured it strange so went to take a look – that group mostly deals in the flesh trade, even an idiot would know where they would conduct the trade-off – sorry if I offend you – how much did you drink?”
“Quite a bit” the elf admitted, “But it’s not because of alcohol.”
”A woman?… No? … A man?”
“… Siren’s Tears. They used it.”
Cain’s brows rose, “When did Golden Tooth Shark become so generous? For him to be willing to spend a hundred gold, the reward would at least be two hundred. – Congratulations, even the most wanted criminal in the country is only worth fifty gold at most.”
It was difficult to reconcile the Cain without his armor with the armored warrior.
Like removing the skin from a mysterious and solitary wolf, for a large dog to emerge in its wake.*
Now that dog stood to one side, looking around with a casual expression. Completely changing the dark and frightening atmosphere of the morgue into something picnic like.
The elf opened Golden Tooth Shark’s coffin to search for a moment, retrieving his dagger and documents. Then used two fingers to pull at his cloak from under the body. – A dead person will lose control of their facilities, so the cloak was already smeared with unmentionable things, even if the person wasn’t a neat freak, seeing this, no one would want to wear it again.
The elf sighed, dropped the cloak, and closed the lid.
–Turning around, he found Cain staring at the wall in a daze.
“Shh.” The knight turned his head, there was no smile on his face, “hear that?”
The elf immediately realized what he was saying.
A set of heavy footsteps could be heard drawing near, from the other side of the wall.
The two immediately hid to either side of the room.
On the wall, an area of bricks suddenly sunk in, revealing a dark hold.
Then, the owner of the footsteps came into the room.
It was a man about 30 years of age, wearing a servant’s long jacket, with the insignia of a certain noble.
The first to make a move was Cain, sword already resting against the man’s neck.
The man let out an involuntary shout of fright, but his mouth was immediately covered, only a muffled sound emerged.
“Name?” Cain asked the man with threatening eyes, signifying he was not to shout for help, then removed his hand slightly.
“Were you sent by Duke Elmond?”
“Nev, never saw the duke. It was the but, butler.”**
“To do what?”
“Said, said a group of mercenaries stole, stole the duke’s money, was, was punished. Asked, asked me to come check, if one was still a, alive, to bring, bring them back for questioning.”
The man felt the sharp edge of the blade moving against his neck, and almost passed out in fear.
Cain asked a few more questions, confirming that the man knew nothing at all, and swiftly knocked him out, then removed his uniform jacked, and stuffed him in the elf’s coffin.
Seeing Cain change into the servant’s jacket, while returning the sword to its sheath without any expression, Ellen felt the knight behind the iron bucket was back.
But then the knight lifted his head, asked using a tone that suggested “let’s go shopping”, “This path should lead to the duke’s residence. Want to take a look?”
The elf nodded, unbalanced.
Then the knight did something unpredictable – he came over, bent, picked the elf up over his shoulder, and walked towards the secret passage.
“What are you doing, I’ll fall!” The flustered elf struggled on his shoulder.
“If you don’t mind, we can change positions to a princess carry as well.” Cain continued forward without much care.
“I can walk by myself!”
“Please pretend to be an honest unconscious elf, who knows how long the path is, what would happen if someone finds out?”
“No one will find out when it’s this dark! At least wait till we’re there!”
The secret passage was indeed longer than imagined. Dark and small, the stone walls were moist with condensation, the floor beneath the feet was uneven.
Cain continued forward carry the servant’s lamp, his footsteps echoing in the passage. Though the path was long, there were no divisions, soon they reached the end.
“Good, starting now, you can play dead.”
In the darkness, the knight declared somberly.
*So, a pic of doggy Cain 😉 from the author’s facebook page, go and check out the art by Tina!
**It’s always the butler!
On a side note, we finally meet Cain (under the iron bucket of an armor), and he’s nothing like Ellen thought XD. Poor Ellen.