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On the Edge

Castien's picture
Faction: 
Submission Type: 

Asarel had been shot.

It wasn't fatal, of course. The arrow had hit him just below the hip while they had been standing just off the Fancy Cakes' stoop, and Miss Luisa, Doctor Luisa?, had fixed him up. Castien had no doubt that it was Tel'arar's girl that had done it. They had the arrow shaft, they could prove the fletching matched.  What would be the point, though?

Ariava wasn't herself, it was hard to actually blame her for being so irreversibly stupid. Tel'arar was emotionally compromised due to the murder of his mother and the soul of his beloved had been torn out which was why she was so irreversibly stupid. Mister Soth hadn't listened when Castien told him to escort Tel'arar and his woman away from the stoop. Asarel had been shot.

That had been the last straw. Lilliana, the darling kitten, had already practically fired him by hiring someone else to do his job while he had been standing right behind her. Another rogue to do her business. Good for her. She had never listened to him, anyway. Or anyone for that matter.  He had been, still was, insulted and hurt. He could hear the echoing laughter of Saellas and Iauron in the back of his mind, mocking him the way they always used to with their annoying, sing-song voices telling him that he'd never be good enough for anything. That he was worthless.

And so he was. Earlier in the evening, he had been angry. So angry that he had resigned from the position he was in with the Duchess. Just quit. When the anger receeded, depression rushed in and filled everything that had been left empty in it's wake. Here he was, laying flat on the cool floor of his room in Threadneedle, cigarette between his lips and enough now-empty bottles of cheap wine to get him to just beyond the point of miserable.

It wasn't working; the alcohol, the cigarettes, drawing.  None of it was. Talking to Kharris was going to be moot. She was busy caring for Asarel and Castien could already hear the subtle "I told you so"s that she would never actually say that, not to his face, but she would certainly weave it in to her every word with subtlety. On second thought, she might just outright say it. She had told him so. She had, more or less, warned him. She deserved to be able to say those words.

Talii Flamesurge was an option. What he wouldn't give to just go to her.  Be with her. Fall into her arms and lay there for the night. He wouldn't do that, though. That's not who he was. Talli was, on the other hand, a friend to Duchess Whitedawn. That was almost enough to remove her from the option pool. He'd only just met her the night before, besides. But she was nice, and had nearly just as many troubles as he did. The small glimpse of the woman behind the wild-child-facade was just enough to be enthralling. He still wanted to know more.

But... what would it matter if she talked to Lilliana? Maybe she should. Lilliana was probably an utter wreck. She didn’t understand the business, this business, the business she hired him to take care of, no matter how hard anyone tried to explain it to her. Lilliana had no idea what she caused.

That was probably good.

Asarel wanted to “join forces”, as much as assassins did that. Maybe that was the way to go. It was less frustrating when someone pointed at a target and said "Go". 

Comments

Asarel's picture

Dem bitches, yo. /brofist
Lord Valse Triste's picture

People often times overlook the elegance of the craft, only looking to the end result. Short sighted and fickle, so very wasteful. I've always had a love of the arts in all forms, and am always looking for men and women of talent.
Lilliana's picture

Careful what you wish for. Seems that if you have more than one talented individual in your employ, they all throw their hands up and walk out on you in public.

 

Normal is an illusion. What is normal for the spider, is chaos for the fly.  ~ Morticia Addams

 All life is an experiment.  The more experiments you make the better.  What if they are a little coarse, and you may get your coat soiled or torn?  What if you do fail, and get fairly rolled in the dirt once or twice.  Up again, you shall never be so afraid of a tumble.  ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Alynore's picture

Maybe you shouldn't make it look like you're replacing them in public? >.> Appearances are everything, especially when you've got a noble tag. Perception is the only truth most people care about--not the reality, annoying as that is. I get to knock that lesson into recruits' heads all the time.
Lilliana's picture

Manipulating others to see or do what I desire is not a talent I even care to possess. But as my actions are constantly misconstrued...it seems I've got to work on that, for their own good. It is...a tad bit disconcerting, really.

 

Normal is an illusion. What is normal for the spider, is chaos for the fly.  ~ Morticia Addams

 All life is an experiment.  The more experiments you make the better.  What if they are a little coarse, and you may get your coat soiled or torn?  What if you do fail, and get fairly rolled in the dirt once or twice.  Up again, you shall never be so afraid of a tumble.  ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Alynore's picture

Yeah. It sucks. But you don't gotta be manipulative, either. Just be smarter about what you say and do, and how, where others can see and hear it. No reason to not retain all those paladin-y qualities, it just takes a bit more work--and even then, folks'll see you as weak cuz they think you're being utterly transparent. Those folks can go screw off, though. ((Balancing Ned Stark-like honesty and trust with...um. Anyone else from that series is a tough line to walk. And it got Ned killed, because he was too open and stubborn about it to the wrong people, and not enough to the right ones.))
Lilliana's picture

I've got no choice but to try, really.

 

Normal is an illusion. What is normal for the spider, is chaos for the fly.  ~ Morticia Addams

 All life is an experiment.  The more experiments you make the better.  What if they are a little coarse, and you may get your coat soiled or torn?  What if you do fail, and get fairly rolled in the dirt once or twice.  Up again, you shall never be so afraid of a tumble.  ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Kharris's picture

Huh. I was just told the woman who shot Asarel works for -you-. Interesting.
Lilliana's picture

And here my intentions were nothing of the sort, and I *hired* no one. This assassin business is entirely too complex. Here I try to keep you close, and send someone I value far less to retrieve a slip of paper from a woman I hate...and you take offense. You're my...were my personal guard. Not my damn maid.

 

Normal is an illusion. What is normal for the spider, is chaos for the fly.  ~ Morticia Addams

 All life is an experiment.  The more experiments you make the better.  What if they are a little coarse, and you may get your coat soiled or torn?  What if you do fail, and get fairly rolled in the dirt once or twice.  Up again, you shall never be so afraid of a tumble.  ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Castien's picture

You asked him to do a specific job that falls under my skillset and he agreed. Intentions or not, that's hiring him. Intentions or not, it looks bad and undermines me and my skills. Like if you've been a ranked member of the Crusade for a while and suddenly your Commander asks a new recruit to do what you are supposed to do. What you have been doing. You sit there and you wonder what changed. If your skills are waning. If you're getting old. If, suddenly, you're no longer what they want.

And it hurts.


... For the record, I don't dislike you. 

Lilliana's picture

Your skills are...-were- required 'closer to home.' Not running off to deal with a problem that Tylel and Ariava created. Call it poor judgement, or trying to spread my resources out. Nonetheless, I feel like an ass.

 

Normal is an illusion. What is normal for the spider, is chaos for the fly.  ~ Morticia Addams

 All life is an experiment.  The more experiments you make the better.  What if they are a little coarse, and you may get your coat soiled or torn?  What if you do fail, and get fairly rolled in the dirt once or twice.  Up again, you shall never be so afraid of a tumble.  ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson