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Author Topic: A Murder in Alvedara - Chapter 26 - At The Mercy of Others  (Read 1475 times)
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Kane
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« on: January 12, 2011, 05:11:54 AM »

A Murder in Alvedara – Chapter 26 -  At the Mercy of Others

As expected, we couldn’t find any hint of where the killer went. The murder was exactly the same as all the others. The Vashar boy had been held down by chains that were no longer there, appeared to be placed at an exact angle toward the center of the city, and one of his organs was expertly cut out. Once again there was very little blood. If the killer felt rushed, it didn’t show. With nothing else to learn I had the body sent back to Yolan so it could be prepared for the family. The storm crows came and took their own dead. They were silent and said nothing to me or my men. Any animosity that might have existed between our two groups was gone; we both had lost good men to the killer. We had a common enemy.

I was in a foul mood as I walked into my office. My staff gave me a wide berth. I could see Yolan standing by the map and he wasn’t alone; she was there. I was tired, frustrated, and was done being used by the order. Without a word I joined them at the map. The Vashar boy’s murder site was already marked, which just added to my anger.

Maybe she sensed my irritation, maybe she cared about how I felt, or maybe she just felt like talking; “the legates were following your men. We, I, had no new information.  We were betting on your hunch and you were right.” That took a little of my edge off, but I couldn’t control the anger that slipped into my response.

“If the Grand Legate has that much faith in me, why has he kept me from my brother? What’s he afraid of? You have to know.”

I could see her eyes widen at the tone in my voice. It was unlikely anyone outside the order ever spoke to her that way. She paused for a moment before responding, her own anger rising. “I don’t know what’s coming but have a few suspicions. The Grand Legate does not take me into his confidences. I’m trying to help where I can.”

I tried to control my emotions and look at the situation logically. She was here, talking to me when no one else in the order would. In her own way she probably was helping. I liked her, wanted her, but my anger was difficult to keep contained.

“Then give me access to my brother and whatever you suspect about this ritual.” I regretted my words almost immediately. I should have been more appreciative, not demanding. I tried to cover for my mistake but she held up her hand.

“I don’t have the power you think. I can get word to your brother, give him information on the current murder but I can’t give you access. I’m not in the Grand Legate’s inner circle. He sends for me when he wants something and then issues his orders, which I follow to the letter. What I suspect is based off of what little I’ve overheard and the rumors running through the temple.”

She paused long enough for me to gently reach out and touch her arm. “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to lash out, but I’m working almost blind. I came close with no help from the order. I may have caught him if the order would trust me.”

The tension started to drain from her shoulders and she didn’t pull away from my touch. “I’ll get you what I can, but I think I’m being excluded as they think I’m too close to you.”

We stood there in silence and I barely noticed Yolan leaving. I couldn’t think of anything worth saying, but enjoyed just standing with her. When this was over, if I was still alive, I would act on my feelings, regardless of the costs.

She smiled at me and said, “I can give you two things, one a fact, and one a guess. The fact is that there were four legates in the patrol that met the killer.  One isn’t accounted for. The guess is that there’s only one more sacrifice to seal the ritual. Our time is almost done.”
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