Gender: Male Age: 54 Location: Las Vegas, Nv
|Introduction: Mage glimmer|
I was using a wash cloth to clean the drakes. The one in my hand was sprawled out on its back while I washed its belly. I looked at Ash as the stuffed cat shifted and the stuffed elephant lifted its head. My daughter wouldn’t go to sleep if the two weren’t with her. She was the reason I was washing the drakes.
Some of the street children outside had been playing in the basins around the god statues. She thought the drakes should play to, only she used her mother’s dirty wash water. Thankfully Melody and her companion had been out with her grandmother. I finished the drake and turned to set it on the table as the back door opened.
Silver walked in and smiled as I picked up the next drake, “busy I see.”
I looked at Ash and he hesitated, “sorry.”
I nodded and gestured to another chair as I began washing the small creature. I whispered as he sat, “she used the dirty wash water on them.”
He grinned and whispered back, “it could be worse.”
I gave him a dirty look, “don’t curse me.”
He smiled and then sighed, “I need a favor.”
I shook my head, “wait until Jasmine is back.”
He touched my hand, “Duke Albert and his little group of merchant followers has returned.”
I looked from his hand to his face and he pulled his hand back, “he once thought Jasmine his and now he has a mage glimmer.”
I waited and he sighed, “it will intrance any mage into obeying. He has made a few comments that soon the city would be his, including my daughter.”
I sighed and finished the drake and set it aside before reaching into my shirt and touching a small amulet, “Jasmine return.”
I looked at him again, “what do you want me to do? Steal his mage glimmer?”
He nodded and pulled an amulet out of his pocket, “and replace it with this.”
I looked at the amulet while I turned the drake in my hand, “that is what the glimmer looks like?”
He nodded, “and he probably sleeps with it on.”
I snorted as I finished with the drake and set it on the table after a caress, “and has guards around the bed and outside the door with mage traps and wards everywhere.”
He grinned, “probably.”
I looked at the next drake as it landed in my hand and stretched out, “set the amulet on the table.”
I started washing the drake, “remember I told you about the unseen manor?”
Silver nodded and I grinned, “I was thinking of moving.”
He looked at me and then grinned, “so I can’t find you.”
I kept grinning, “something like that.”
I sighed, “actually with the large grounds inside the walls it would be nicer and the girls would be able to play.”
I was just finishing when Jasmine walked in, “something wrong?”
She looked at our daughter in her cradle before looking at me. I went to dump the water and finished cleaning up. I gestured to her father, “have Silver tell you.”
I started for the door and Jewel and the drakes were suddenly filling the air. I had to ask around before I headed into the noble section of the city. One look at the huge estate and I knew he had already used the glimmer on mages. I slowly made my way around the estate before returning to the house.
Jasmine was sitting with her mother when I came in and Ash was playing with her two stuffed friends. I could hear Melody in the other room and Gloria smirked, “Silver is watching her.”
I snorted as I crossed and bent to give Jasmine a kiss. She caressed my face and sighed, “I am pregnant again.”
I shook my head as I headed for the basement, “for a mage you are very forgetful when it comes to that.”
Her laugh followed me, “I didn’t say I forgot anything.”
I grinned at that thought and checked and loaded my pack. When I came up I grinned at Silver’s purple beard as Jasmine murmured a spell to change it back, “you should make him keep it that color.”
Gloria snickered as Silver glared and I headed for the door, “don’t wait up.”
I waited in the shadows of an alley as slowly the day turned into night. I had gone up onto a roof to look at and watch the estate and now I moved. As twilight began I left the alley and crossed to the wall before turning to follow it. I had to walk quickly and reached the large front gates when I knew the guard was furthest away.
I jumped and rolled over the wooden gates before I began walking towards the front entrance. Just before I reached it I turned in at the stables and ducked inside. I slipped into the shadows and listened to the grooms in the tack room. The guards walked past the stable entrance and I moved again.
This time I passed the tack room and went to the side door. I was careful when I opened it and then slipped out. I walked straight to the side door and checked it before opening it and stepping inside. I looked through the doorway to the right and into the busy kitchen before walking straight ahead.
I stepped back and into a hanging tapestry as servers hurried out of the kitchen and went to the dining hall. Once they were gone I followed as far as the rear servants hall. I went into it and down to the servants stairs before going up. On the second floor I peeked out and looked down the hall.
Strands of magic and mage traps stretched the entire length of the hall. I shook my head and shifted my pack to pull out the small silver pen knives. I took my time as I began shifting strands of magic and pinning them to one side or another. When I reached the large double doors of the study I started on the door.
I used picks to unlock the door and opened it to look in. I blinked at the treasure everywhere and shook my head. I opened the door a little wider and froze when I saw the real gargoyle. I gestured as it crouched and rumbled before suddenly moving. Jewel hissed as she spread her wings and mantled on my shoulder and the drakes appeared from shadows.
I hadn’t even known they were here but the gargoyle slid to a stop. I stared straight at Jewel and ignored the drakes as I hissed and gestured to them. I looked the gargoyle over carefully before reaching out and turning the creature’s head. I growled when I saw the collar and shifted forward while Jewel kept its attention.
I pulled a small thin knife and slowed slipped it under the collar and cut up. The collar parted and fell and the gargoyle looked down before looking at me. I smiled and scratched his chin, “you can come home with us.”
It hesitated before nodding and I stood and stepped into the room. I started looking through everything and took the most expensive things and filled my pack. The study was fairly large and I began finding magical objects. I emptied a small chest and started filling it and when I was done I sat at the duke’s desk and waited.
I looked through his papers using a tiny mage lantern and blinked at what I found before taking them. When the manor finally became quiet I gave it another hour before I stood and walked to the door. I knelt and pet the gargoyle, “stay quiet and follow.”
It nodded and I picked up the small chest and opened the door. I stepped into the hall and looked out before leading the gargoyle down the hall. The drakes flew out of the shadows to follow. The master suite was at the other end of the hallway and I had to set the chest down and move strands of magic.
When I reached the suite I moved the strands of magic and disarmed the traps. I picked the lock and listened for several minutes. I slowly opened the door and looked inside. I saw the man asleep on the bed or pretending to be asleep. I gestured for the gargoyle to wait and slipped into the room.
I pulled as pouch out and silently crossed to the bed. I opened the pouch while holding my breath and carefully sprinkled a tiny bit of fine powder on the pillow beside the duke’s head. He shifted and started to moved before suddenly sagging. I waited before checking the amulet around his neck.
Somehow the strands weren’t right, they looked weak and incomplete. I started searching and under the pillow I found another. This time I knew I had found it, I took the one he was wearing and the one under the pillow before replacing it with the one Silver gave me. Just for good measure I took his money belt and his pouch of gold.
I left and closed and locked the door before picking up the chest and leading the gargoyle to the stairs. We went down and to the front door before I peeked out. I watched the guards and waited before finally opening the door and walking out. I went straight to the gate and pulled the locking bar back.
I pushed the gate open and walked into the night as I headed home. The drakes appeared and flew around me and a couple even landed on the gargoyle and chirped at it. When I walked into the kitchen Jasmine was still up and so was Gloria and Silver. She frowned at the gargoyle as I crossed to set the chest on the table.
I smiled as it looked around, “it had a slave collar on.”
She sighed and smiled as she caressed my face. I pulled out the silk pouch I had put the two amulets in. I tossed it to Silver, “one is fake and the other real.”
I pulled out the papers I had found, “you can take these to the king. He was using mages to forge trade documents.”
I looked at the three cats when they walked in and grinned, “you look clean.”
Gloria snorted, “Ash wasn’t the only one giving out baths.”
I headed for the stairs, “night.”
Jasmine cleared her throat and I looked back, “yes?”
She gestured to my pack and I smiled sweetly, “future presents.”
I was up early and left Jasmine to sleep as I went to check Ash. The gargoyle followed me and I sighed when I found her playing in her room. The walls had branches growing out and the floor was covered in thick pink fur. Her eyes lit up when she saw the gargoyle and the next thing I knew she had laid it down so she could pet it.
It was midmorning and I was outside with Melody and Ash. They were playing with several of the neighbor children in and around the god basins. Somehow the gargoyle had a feeling of belonging and all the children seemed to love it. I glanced at the six guards and the noble walking towards me and stood.
I reached into my shirt to touch the amulet, “Jasmine.”
The guards spread out as they pulled short swords and the noble growled, “you are dead thief.”
I smiled, “doing this here is a mistake you will regret.”
He gestured and the guards attacked, I slid back as I pulled a dagger. Suddenly the guards were screaming and writhing as they were thrown across and into a building. Melody stomped up and glared at the shocked noble, “don’t touch my daddy!”
It would have been funny if the guards weren’t still screaming. I knew what happened to them hadn’t come from my daughter. The duke straightened and pulled his sword before the two Phoenixes struck. He screamed as he burst into flames and staggered to a basin and fell in. I shook my head when the gargoyle leaped in and bit his arm to make him drop his sword.
He tried to grab the edge of the basin but the three cats appeared and leaped to the rim and lashed out with claws. A large crowd was starting to gather as he continued to scream and struggle. The water should only have been a foot deep but the duke was floundering around as it grew deeper.
The guards had quieted after they passed out and the duke finally reached another side of the basin. I blinked when he climbed out and fell to the street. His legs looked like they had grown together and he had scarlet scales on the skin I could see. He writhed around as city guards shoved through the crowd.
One looked at me while the other used his foot to turn the duke over, “what happened?”
I shrugged, “he and his guards attacked me and the gods didn’t like it.”
Jasmine slipped up beside me as the guard looked at the statues. They actually looked smug and he smiled and then chuckled, “good for them.”
They began waking the guards and pulled them away after speaking with witnesses. The duke they called a cart for since his legs had lengthened and he had grown a fish tail. It wasn’t long before a lot of mages went to speak to him about his use of a mage glimmer on them and then the king wanted him and...
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