And a few more uneventful days went by. Needless to say, I got to know and understand reliquitur a lot more, and Lieutenant ate whatever edible she found on her way. The thing is, I almost forgot the economy ran in money. After three villages where we weren't able to either find a job or buy a thing and tired of living off the land we were each day, Reliquitur decided to ask to take a turn to the left.
-We'll get to the destination a day or two later, master-he told me-but we will be received and eat actual, cooked food and borrow some tinerfs from the brotherhood's bank. I beg you, master!
And I agreed. As far as I'd come then, I was neither affected by sleep deprivation or famine, but I did it for him and partially for Lieutenant, who always had a prey in her fangs but had been becoming thinner lately. So, another delay. Not like I had no time left, though. As far as I'm concerned, undead don't age.
A few hours after taking the turn, the sun was already tainting the sky like autumn paints pumpkins, we found ourselves in what looked like an ambush.
-Hands up, boneface and company!-shouted a thug in front of us, sword unsheathed.-And we might not hurt the kitten or the grey-armored wall.
Reliquitur did indeed look like a wall, a man that big in an armor. He looked like he was about to do or say something, but a second thug knocked him down.
-Lights out, baby girl-and Reliquitur fell on the ground with a strident, metallic noise.
Lieutenant sat and started licking her paw as if that had nothing to do with her. I was alone in that fight.
-Mute, fleshless? Maybe our little friend can make you talk...
The thug I assumed was the leader grabbed a pack of knives from his back and reached for a white-golden blade. I recognised the soul eater blade immediatly and stepped back, reaching for my sword. the sky was already black, the stars shining like thousands of distant candles lost in the infinitude of space.
-You don't look as tough without your toys, you know?-I told the leader, who was stepping towards me.
-So what? I get goods and money out of this. I also met my partner, Zola, in an ambush to a caravan!
-Oh, we were so young back then!-Said the other thug.
-Yes, such wild times...
They got lost in their memories for a few seconds. In the meantime, a person no taller than a five year old appeared.
-I thought we told you to stay hidden unless we asked for help!-The leader shouted, flying into a rage.
-Yes, stay safe unless we say otherwise!-Shouted the other.
The small person looked over the coat and begged the thugs to stop.
-You are more than this, we've talked about it already-she stated-. There's other ways to thrive!
-Sorry Xenta, but we've already made up our minds. This is the easiest way-
-This'll get you killed one day!-she said-once the big guy wakes up, you're both dead! And the undead hasn't killed you because he doesn't want to, both have their phases awakened!
The latter thing gave away her capabilities. If she could see other people's phases, she either was a mage or an apprentice. The thugs sure had to have a way with words.
-Xenta, if you're not going to help, leave! The big guy will wake up and we'll be real screwed then!
-Actually, Xenta, why don't you help us?-I hesitantly said, wondering if it would work.
-You stay out of this, fleshless prick!- Both thugs shouted.
This was a family argument, blood related or not. And I, of course, wasn't a part of it.
-Xenta, we've talked about this, and we insist... "People I stab and money I grab", my father said. This is my only possible job, and if I tried getting anywhere close to the town or the temple, they'd hang me!
-Run away then!
-You know we can't! The thief guild would behead me for changing routes or deserting. This is as far as we can go without being persecuted... so quit whining and help or hide!
-I'm fed up!
Xenta started walking towards me while making casting signs. The circles and stars in her hands shone, and the tattoos across them looked like they were in fire. A blue-lit magic spectacle that looked heavily mana-consuming.
-If you are going to be like this, I'm leaving!
A spell was made, the thugs, fainted and fell without being able to object. Xenta's hands went off.
-So, undead... you and your friends could use this to run away.
-Asleep-Xenta assured-. And I doubt they'll wake up soon. Think your friend needs fixing?
I nodded and she casted anotherf spell, healing Reliquitus with a green glow. He woke up confused and screaming, but calmed down after a quick explaination.
-Will you come with us?-I asked her.
-I'm afraid I won't for now-she replied-. I have lectures to attend.
A yellow circle opened in the floor, making her heterochromatic eyes to shine.
-Farewell, adventurers, and may the Gods favour you.
She jumped in it and disappeare with the light.
After a short conversation on magic and how embarrased he was that he couldn't protect me, Reliquitur, Lieutenant and I resumed our walk to where we were supposed to resupply.