Godric dipped his head to the man. “My name is Godric, acting Commander of the Wayfarers’ Guild. We believe you may be in danger, and we have come to protect you.”
Eruviel glanced around as Godric began speaking with the portly scholar. Taking note of the walkway opposite of where the man sat, she motioned to Fey that she would make her way over there. Offering the man her most charming and reassuring smile, she turned to silently head down the hall.
A few girls, dressed in the robes of scholars, lingered on the opposite balcony near Eruviel. They peered curiously over to where Cabrion and the others stood.
Wary of onlookers, Eruviel inspected around the opposite corner before approaching the group of girls. “Good evening ladies,” she said with a pleasant tone and smile. “I am sorry if we are disturbing your studying.”
The girls all looked taken aback by Eruviel, but not too much. One shook her head, and smiled. “No, we’re done for the night.”
She could just make out Godric sighing and speaking with the scholar Cabrion. “I was not aware that only nobles were considered good enough targets for assassins.”
If she could hear him at this distance, others closer to the man could as well. Eruviel inclined her head to the small group. “Forgive my friends. It is nothing to be alarmed about, I assure you. They just do not know how to be quiet in a library. But please, do not let me keep you.”
The girl nodded to Eruviel. “Right. Thank you.” They all give her polite nods and smiles before trailing back down one of the halls.
Returning a smile, she turned to continue her watch, but kept an eye on the girls as they went.
Godric’s voice softly echoed out around the high pillars. “An organization whose only interest is money. Someone paid them to kill you, and so they are going to attempt to do so. I am not going to let you die. You are coming with us whether you like it or not.”
She had never seen oliphants, but she was sure her company was just as loud as one. Walking back into sight of her friends, she made a low tsk. A few of them looked her way, and she signed for them to keep their voices down.
Then she heard it; the soft whisper of a bowstring being drawn. Taking her bow from her back, she dodge out of sight and nocked an arrow. Across on the far left near the grand staircase she could make out a hooded figure hidden behind a bench, aiming his bow at Cabrion. Without hesitating she loosed her arrow at the assassin.
A scream echoed through the hall as a young woman witnessed Eruviel’s arrow stick into the shoulder of the armed, hooded figure. The man stood quickly, and darted down the stairs. Sprinting after him, Eruviel rounded a corner, flew down the steps, and hopped a banister over to the next flight.
Slowing to a stop by the woman who had screamed, Eruviel quickly looked her over for injury. “Madam, are you unhurt?”
The shaken woman nodded stiffly. “I… Yes,” she choked out. “I-I need to get my students out of here.”
Eruviel offered her an apologetic smile. “I am sorry to have frightened you. Please, get your students out and inform whoever is in charge here. The man who fled is very dangerous.” Giving the woman one last nod and a smile, she took off once more after the wounded man.
It was an easy path to follow. Turning down a long corridor, a gradually increasing blood trail led the way. Whoever the man was had quite a wound. Eruviel hurried down the hall, frowning at the the ground. Don’t be dead. Don’t be dead.
The trail led her to the end of the hall and up a few steps. Holding onto caution, she skipped up the steps and stopped as she caught sight of the man slumped down on the floor against a wall. A dark hood covered his features. Her arrow looked to have embedded deeply into the soft flesh just under his shoulder, and there was quite a lot of blood. From his raspy breaths, she could tell that he was still conscious. Kneeling down by the man, Eruviel pressed one hand by the wound in attempt to stop the bleeding. Her other hand searched him for weapons. “If you’d not been hiding so well, I could have shot you somewhere less important,” she muttered.
The man sputtered something that was half a cough and half a laugh. “It’s… about time… someone saw me.”
Having heard them follow after, Eirikr and Godric slowed to stand behind her. Godric looked to the man on the ground and Eirikr turned to survey the area around them. “Is he the only one you saw?” Godric asked.
Eruviel nodded to Godric, and reached her free hand under the man’s hood to press against his forehead. It hurt. It was always worse on this end, and while not as bad as the last couple times, the pain pouring into her shoulder from the man was, to be put mildly, unpleasant. Moisture filled the corners of her eyes, but Eruviel just inclined her head to the man. “Do you think you could be moved to get you to a healer?”
Godric knelt down by them and awaited the man’s response to Eruviel’s question.
As Eruviel reached beneath the hood, the familiar features of Húnir came into the light. His features seem to ease some with Eruviel’s touch, but he still looked incredibly worn. “How should I know…? I am no healer.”
Godric grumbled lowly. “He has a point.”
Cwendlwyn’s voice could be heard, calling softly from the hall. “Eirik!”
Eruviel nodded, but did not seem too pleased about all of the blood loss. But Cwen was here now. She could do something for him. “Who hired you to kill that man?”
Cwendlwyn quickly came into view of the scene. “Oh, Bema help me….” She waved her hands to clear the way. “Out of the way, out of the way,” she murmured as she stepped forward.
Húnir’s gaze turned towards Cwen and Meluion as they approached. “My owners… You already must have known.”
Godric stood back up and moved away as instructed. Eruviel shifted to the side so as to be out of Cwendlwyn’s way, but still kept her hand on Húnir’s forehead.
“Forget his head! Keep applying pressure to the wound,” ordered Cwen as she began digging through her pack.
Eruviel nodded, and quickly reached over with her already bloodied hand to press against the wound. Unsure, her other hand slowly drew away.
Húnir just grunted. His chin dipped to his chest as he tried to take deep, unsteady breaths.
Cwendlwyn’s normally severe brow softened just a smudge as she cut away the shirt to reveal the wound. “Don’t force it. I’ve fixed worse,” she said before setting to her work.
~ ~ ~ *** ~ ~ ~
Only another hour passed before Eruviel returned to the Colagar Estate with the rest of her guild. Húnir had been carried back by Eirikr and Feygil, and Cwendlwyn was sitting up to tend and keep watch over the unconscious man. Learning that no others were to be sent after Cabrion that night, the Elf slipped away to the confines of her quarters.
It was cool in the room, and a sea breeze wafted in the open windows. Washing the last of the dried blood from her hands, she traded her clothes for a thin summer robe, and sunk down to lean against a wall. She was used to taking the headaches, weariness and stress of her friends, but this was different. Not quite as bad as the lingering emotions that had plagued her after the previous year’s journey, nor the girl by the lake, or even Hallem’s legs, this pain seemed somehow more harsh. Not just because she was not also wounded, so her body did not fight off the pain that faded all too slowly, but because it had been caused by her in the first place.
Pulling the clip out to loosen her braid, she lay down to drink in the cold from the stone floors. It’s about time someone saw me. Some of it was probably the pain talking, but she felt guilty for having wounded him so. He needed a chance to break from the leash that bound him to Neldor and the organization that held him captive. And, unlike so many in this city, she hoped he would see that chance, and take it.
Letting out a sigh, Eruviel shifted on her side and closed her eyes. It would be gone in a few hours, and she would be right as rain. She would check on the others, and Húnir, then probably make her way to the library to see if any help could be offered in return for the mess that was made. Only a few more hours and a whole other day would begin.
((Minor editing has been done for tense and exposition.
A few things were lost between saving in-game chat logs, but I think I remembered it all correctly.
Thank you to Atanamir for GMing, and playing as Húnir and Cabrion!)