Gender: Male Age: 53 Location: Las Vegas, Nv
My name is Sinclair and I was born on the street. I don’t remember my mother and never knew my father. I was raised mostly by various thieves. By ten I was one of the best pickpockets and could pick any lock. By fourteen I was one of the best thieves in the city.
I had an edge over the others because I could see the signs magic left. Oh, I wasn’t a mage or wizard but seeing the signs of magic let me avoid traps that caught others. I was eighteen when I met the mage Silver.
I was feeling a little bored and it had started to rain. The mage shop was quaint with glazed glass windows. I slipped the lock easily and stepped in avoiding a magic trap on the floor. I looked around before crossing to look through a doorway. All the items in the shop were showy with gems. I wasn’t working and didn’t really need money.
What drew me through the doorway was a study with a few bookshelves. A comfortable chair in one corner almost seemed to call me. I crossed to look at the books in one of the cases and pulled one down. I looked around before moving to the chair and sitting. I relaxed and leaned back before opening the book.
I ignored the tiny figures that roamed around and began reading. It was several hours before I stopped and reluctantly closed the book. I was tempted to take it with me but I didn’t really want to damage it in the rain. I stood and put it back before petting the small black onyx dragon on the shelf and turning towards the door.
I slipped out of the shop and even took the time to lock the door behind me. I went back three days later after stealing a rich merchant’s money chest. I entered the shop as easily as before and headed back to the study. After I was seated in the chair an amber griffin landed on the arm. I caressed it before opening the book and going back to reading.
An hour later I looked up to see the mage leaning on a staff across the room. I was caught and wasn’t going to temp fate by trying anything. The mage looked ancient but strangely he had a sense of strength about him. He smiled, “That was a very good book.”
I glanced at it in my hands, “It has been so far.”
He gestured around the room, “All the gems and other expensive things and you ignored them to sit and read a book.”
I shrugged, “I wasn’t interested in stealing anything.”
He smiled, “And yet you are a well known thief.”
I looked at him closely, “You know who I am?”
He straightened, “Of course. I would have come to introduce myself before but I was… occupied.”
I grinned, “Some new fantastic spell?”
He laughed, “More like a bit of boring alchemy.”
I closed the book and stood to put it back on the shelf, “You know my name…”
He bowed and gestured to the second doorway into the study, “You can call me Silver.”
We went through a comfortable looking living area and into a small kitchen. He gestured to a small table and I sat as he went to the stove and poured hot water into two cups. He sat across from me and the cup of tea seemed to slid across the table on its own. I sipped it and smiled before looking at the mage, “so I take it you aren’t upset that I was reading one of your books.”
He shook his head, “I don’t mind. Tell me, how would I go about using your services?”
I looked at him carefully, “Why would a mage need something stolen?”
He smiled, “More like returned.”
I nodded, “Tell me who, where and what and I will look at it to see how much to charge you.”
He smiled again and started talking. I listened while I sipped my tea and finally gestured for him to stop and stood, “Give me a day or two.”
I walked out thinking about the duke he wanted me to steal his charmed amulet from. I knew it would be hard since I had already been in his manor. I crossed the city using shadows and hidden ways.
I stood outside the walls of the duke’s manor and just looked at all the light. I finally grinned and moved to the wall as I slipped on the tight kid gloves. This was going to be one of the hard parts because the wall top was covered with broken glass.
I pulled myself up and ignored the glass as I looked onto the grounds on the other side of the walls. I lifted higher as I turned my hands to put all my weight on the palms on the very edge of the wall. I slowly rotated my body over the wall and went to one hand before placing my other on the other edge of the wall top. I shifted my weight to that hand and moved my other over. I slowly lowered my body to the wall and climbed down.
I crouched in the shadow of the wall before moving across to the wall of the manor. I moved along the wall to an inner corner and placed my back in the corner before starting to climb using pressure from my feet and hands. When I reached the roof I paused while guards walked by below me. I reached up and swung out before pulling myself up onto the roof.
I moved slowly and carefully to the far end of the roof before lying down and looking over. I scooted out almost to my waist as I reached down to the roof vent. It took a couple of moments to work the vent loose and then I wiggled back as I pulled the vent up onto the roof. I set it down on the roof before turning around and lowering myself down and into the vent opening.
The attic was hot and pitch black so I carefully lit a black taper. The black candle gave off a dim black or dark blue light but it was enough for me to see by. I carefully moved through the attic until I came to the hatch that led down into the house. I listened before setting the candle down and opening the hatch. I blew out the candle and slipped it into its pouch before hanging from the edge of the hatch and pulling it almost closed.
When I dropped to the hall it made a slight noise but the normal house noise hid it, not to mention the sounds of the party downstairs. I went to the end of the hall and the narrow steep servants stairs. On the second floor I used a tiny mirror to check the hall before stepping out. I walked down to the room beside the duke’s and picked the lock before slipping in.
I hesitated before crossing to the huge old fireplace. I squatted and moved into it before reaching out to feel the back wall. I grinned when it felt cool and looked up the chimney. I carefully stood and pulled out cat claws and put them on. I reached over my head in the tight space and began the slow process of pulling myself up. It was a little while before the chimney widened and I moved my feet until I could lower them into the other chimney.
I moved down slowly and finally carefully squatted in the duke’s fireplace. This was his study and a single glace at the door told me I was right. A mage trap wove around and through the door. I moved out of the fireplace and across to the window. I looked at the mage trap there before grinning and disarming it with a couple of thin silver rods. I opened the window and let in the night air and some moonlight.
I went to the desk and the glass cabinet behind it. It took moments to pick the simple lock and then I was pulling out a small amulet and slipping it into a small silk bag. I pulled out all the other jewelry and then turned to the desk and went through it. Beside a large bag of gold coins, I picked a lock on the bottom drawer and took the single silver dagger that was inside.
I crossed to the window and watched the guards below before climbing out. I retrieved my two silver rods before dropping to the ground below. I moved to the wall quickly and started up. I froze at the top as I heard guards returning and glanced back to see them walking past. After they were gone I carefully moved up and over the wall like I had entered. I dropped to the lane outside and moved across into shadow.
I crossed the city unseen and slipped into the tiny room that was mine. I checked all my tells before pushing on a side wall and stepping into a narrow set of stairs. I closed the panel behind me before going down to the large stone room that had been a basement at one time. The sound of running water in one corner reminded me of how dirty and suet covered I was.
I stripped and put the clothes into a bag to take out later and walked to the large stone basin in the corner. I washed and then dried before walking to my bed and laying back. When I woke up it was the middle of the day.
I dressed and slipped the silk bag with the amulet into my shirt. I put a couple of gold coins in my pouch and left, the streets were alive with rumors of the theft. I stopped at a food cart for a couple of sausage rolls and slowly made my way towards the Mage shop.
Several large men stood around watching the shop and as I walked towards the front door one moved to stop me. I stopped and looked from him to the two other men that moved to surround me, “How may I help you?”
The one that had moved in front of me stepped closer, “No one enters that shop unless we search them.”
I smiled peacefully and kneed him in the groin as I hit the one on my right with a knife hand strike to the throat. I shifted my weight and kicked sideways into the knee of the third man and pulled my dagger as I yanked the head of the man I had kneed up. I put the edge of my dagger against his throat, “if you and your friends are still in the city when I come out, I will find you. When I do, I will skin you before I gut you and cut off your manhood.”
I let him go and slipped my dagger back in its sheath before walking into the shop. The mage looked up from a ring, “Ah, Sinclair.”
I smiled, “Mage Silver.”
I crossed and pulled the silk bag with the amulet out and set it in front of him, “Would you mind if I finished the book I started?”
He smiled, “Not at all.”
I went into his library study and crossed to pull the book out. When I sat the small onyx dragon flew to land on my shoulder as the griffin climbed up into my lap. I looked at them amused and opened the book. When I closed the book hours later the griffin looked up. He looked at the other doorway and then stood and leaped into the air.
The dragon nudged my neck and looked at the doorway. I glanced at it and at the doorway the small griffin had gone through. I stood and put the book back in the bookcase and looked at several others tempted to read another one. I finally turned and walked into the living area and then into the kitchen.
Silver turned from the stove and smiled as he poured two cups of tea. He pulled a tray of meat pies from his oven and they floated off and two stopped in front of me. He sat across from me and sipped his tea, “You worked fast.”
I smiled as I broke open the meat pies to cool, “I had an opportunity and things seemed to work out.”
He smiled and pulled a small pouch from his tunic, “Five gold pieces...”
I waved it away, “It’s on the house. I managed to... acquire some gold while I was there.”
Silver nodded and tucked it away, “perhaps something else. My ornaments seemed to have become attached to you.”
I glanced at the dragon still on my shoulder, “They seem to have attached themselves to me.”Chapter One
I slipped through the crowded streets and shook my head, I always hated the crowds during festival time. The tiny dragon dropped onto my shoulder and one clawed foot pointed towards a tavern. I pushed my way through the crowd and into a crowded common room of the tavern.
One look showed me a table with only one man sitting at it. I crossed the room and sat on the other side of the table, “Alright Silver, why meet here?”
He smiled and pushed a large tankard across the table, “Because I have a guest.”
I lifted an eyebrow, “So?”
Silver sighed, “She likes to listen in on my private conversations.”
I grinned, “And you don’t want her to hear this one?”
His face reddened, “No. I need something Earl Tradia... acquired from Sultan Ghadishah.”
I sipped some of the bitter ale and looked around before snatching a bowl off a tray a passing bar maid held. I poured some of the ale into the bowl and the dragon dropped off my shoulder and walked to the bowl. I grinned as Silver shook his head, “What does this something look like and where would he keep it?”
He looked around, “Either in his library or his strong room. It’s a small red journal.”
Silver looked around and leaned over the table, “The pages are made of human skin.”
I looked at him carefully, “Why would you want this book?”
He sighed, “The stupid... because Sultan Ghadishah killed my old master to get what is written in the book.”
I thought about it and frowned, “I don’t like touching something that is for dark magic.”
Silver snorted, “It isn’t for dark magic. My master took it from a necromancer. It contains alchemy secrets given by shades.”
I sighed, “Why does Earl Tradia have it?”
He shrugged, “He probably heard what it was made of and wants the terrible secrets inside.”
I looked at Silver and narrowed my eyes, “I thought you said...”
He waved away the waitress, “And what was the first thing you thought it was?”
I sat back and finally nodded, “fine.”
I glanced at the dragon as it burped a small flame, “I will see you after I get it.”
I slipped a hand under the dragon and shook my head before slipping it inside my shirt. I pushed my way through the crowded streets until I could slip into shadows. I took the dragon out and looked at it, “Are you okay?”
It crawled up onto my shoulder and I turned to make my way into the richer section of the city. There were still people here but mostly inside the large estates. The one I stopped in front of was dark and seemed to have an aura that stank of evil. I slowly walked around the estate and shook my head. There was a curtain trap around the estate walls.
The servant gate was not only free of traps but unlocked. I slipped through and glanced at the path before shaking my head. The grounds were completely covered in magical traps but the path from the servants gate to the servants entry was clear. The entire outer wall of the manor was covered in magic but the servant entry was unlocked, I opened the door and walked in. In the entry were collars and I grinned before pocketing one.
I checked the kitchen and quietly slipped passed a cook. In the hall I walked down to a set of double doors ignoring screams from the hall. I carefully checked for traps and used salt crystals to bypass a demon summoning trap. I picked the lock and walked into the room. I glanced at the bookshelves filled with books and scrolls I didn’t even want to get close too.
The dragon nudge me towards the desk and I looked close to see a small red book. I checked the room carefully before crossing it. I didn’t touch the desk since it almost stank of blood and evil. I reached for the book and a huge glowing face appeared over the desk. I hesitated and pulled the collar out and showed it to the leering demon.
I picked up the book and turned towards the door. I stopped when I saw the six tiny cages of glittering dragons. I looked at the one on my shoulder as it seemed to growl. I pulled a silk bag out of my shirt and knelt. I glanced back at the demon and started pulling different colored dragons out and stuffing them into the bag. I stood and walked to the door and checked it before opening it.
I checked the door frame before stepping through. I closed the door quietly and walked back to the kitchen. I slipped past the cook and hung the collar up before slipping out the servants door and walking to the gate. I almost expected something to happen when I walked out but nothing did. I poured a line of salt across the gate threshold to prevent demons from following before slipping into the shadows.
I dusted myself with salt before beginning to make my way across the boisterous city. I used a secondary hiding place to sleep that night and was up early. I walked into the mage shop and smiled at the richly dressed woman looking at something on a shelf. I crossed and stepped into the study and went to the bookshelves and the dragon leaped to another.
I picked a book and went to sit in a chair before opening it. I looked up as the woman stepped into the room. She was looking at me as she cocked her head, “Make yourself at home.”
I smiled and held up the book, “Thank you I have.”
She cleared her throat, “May I help you?”
I glanced at the dragon as it leaped and flew to me and looked back at the woman, “No thanks.”
She shifted around, “Do you know Mage Silver?”
I sat back, “Are you always this inquisitive in other peoples business?”
She grinned, “Yes.”
I flicked a tiny dagger from my sleeve and threw it to strike the door frame beside her head, “My business is mine. Those that interfere do so at their own peril.”
Her face went white, “I’m a mage.”
I smiled as I opened the book, “Then you should know better.”
A minute later she was gone and I heard Silver chuckle. I looked at the other door and he grinned, “Well done. Maybe my daughter learned something.”
I stood and put the book away before crossing to follow him. He gestured to the kitchen table and I set both the silk bag and the red book on it. He looked from the book to the bag and then at me with a raised eyebrow. I shrugged, “They were in tiny cages and I had to get them out. I was wondering if they were safe.”
He sighed and opened the bag and looked in before smiling and folding it back. He nodded to me, “Their flying jeweled drakes.”
I looked at the six tiny drakes half the size of my little dragon. They came out and looked around before leaping into the air. Dragon followed them with her eyes as I tapped the red book. Silver picked it up and murmured something that made me shiver. He smiled and pulled out a fat purse and handed it to me, “Thank you.”
I nodded and turned to leave only to have the six drakes suddenly land on me and clinging to me. I sighed as Dragon started purring, “Okay but you watch them.”
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