With a deft twist and leap. Kranik spiraled out of the way of the elf’s vicious blades. He slid across the dark green marble floor, coming to rest in a crouch. He growled lightly, as the elf began to do his devilishly dance of death, crossing the marginal distance he had bought himself.
For each slash of the blade, he had dodged. For each of his own thrusts, his adversary had parried the dagger to one side. Neither could gain a good solid advantage to press. Neither could land a solid blow. Their dance had already spanned several minutes.
The wind blasted past the curtains, spilling small white petals from the flowering trees just outside the balcony. The elf charged forward scraping one of his blades across the stone floor. Sparks and a jagged gouge marking his movements.
The first of the elf’s attack sailed for his head. He dropped almost to the floor to avoid it. The blade sparking across the green marble, left its home trying hard to slice him from his groin to his face. He twisted to his right to avoid that, in the next motion, he sprung straight up sailing over the elf.
The elf skidded to a halt as Kranik deftly landed on the ground in a crouch. The elf tensed his arms, bringing his weapons to bear again. “You only delay the inevitable” the elf whispered across to his troll nemesis.
Kranik gritted his teeth, and clenched the hilts of his daggers tightly. The elf began with his deadly dance. It was then he spotted it. Small, almost unnoticeable. A weak spot in the dance. It was risky to try for it, but he needed to level the playing field. The elf had longer range, was just as quick and agile, and as strong or stronger then he was.
A bead of sweat dripped from Kranik’s forehead, down over his left eye, causing him to blink. The elf charged forward, slicing with the first of his deadly blades. Kranik dropped low to the ground and shot his left arm out as the elf spun to bring the second blade to bear. The elf gasped as the dagger bit into his side, its toxins seeping into the elf’s blood and flesh.
The victory lasted a blink of an eye, as the second blade caught Kranik by the hip. Dragging deeply from his hip, up his stomach and chest, finally exiting his throat and face. His mask sliced in half fluttered off his now bloodied face, in a gust of wind. The elf finished his spin with a heave. Launching Kranik into the air, slamming down unceremoniously onto the hard stone floor.
Kranik gurgled for air, through his sliced windpipe. The elf wasted no time leaping high into the air, slamming the blade in his left hand down into Kranik’s chest pinning him to the ground. The elf’s left leg stood on Kranik’s right arm, preventing him from using one of his daggers. The other hand lay empty, the force of his landing had freed the bloodied dagger from its resting place.
The elf twisted the blade around in Kranik’s chest, a smirk coming to rest across his face. The smirk began to twist into something more sinister, as the elf started to sling his free weapon on to his back.
The elf twitched once, and swallowed hard. The blade in his free hand cascading from his grasp and clattering to the hard stone floor. His eyes bulged in surprise as his limbs felt like they were encased in fire. His knees wavered, and his eyes began to tear up. His left hand, began to lose grip on the handle of his weapon as his focus began to fade.
Kranik had been waiting for the poison to work into the elf’s system. He was also in no shape to continue this fight. As he waited for the first signs of the elf to falter, he worked some blinding powder from its resting place on his left wrist.
As the elf faltered, Kranik furiously kicked the elf off of him, in the same motion he flung the blinding powder into his eyes. The blade wrenched through his chest further before it too clattered to the ground as the now blinded elf slumped to his knees.
Kranik rolled over and grabbed his other dagger, and stumbled to the ground. He picked himself back up and ran to the balcony. Partway there, he threw several small canisters of vanishing smoke to help conceal his hasty exit.
He hopped onto the railing of the balcony a moment, before turning around and leaping to the ivy covered lattice work that clung to the side of the noble’s palatial home. As quickly as he could, he scaled the side of the building to the roof. Hoping that the elf would be fooled into thinking he leapt to the ground below.
He knew as he leapt from rooftop to rooftop, it would only buy him a few precious seconds, but he needed all the help he could get. His destination was chosen all he had to do was get there.
The elf stood up, as his vision cleared, his prey was gone. His limbs were weak and his mind was cloudy. He shook his head. He put his hand to his ribs, the wound wasn’t very deep. He started to move forward, and his knees gave out. He fell forward, his arms shot out to keep him from bashing face first into the floor.
He muttered a curse under his breath. He forced himself to stand back up. Shakily he rose and he sighed heavily. Whatever toxin or toxins were coursing through him, they seemed to be draining his muscles, and not causing any “real” damage to himself. He began to chuckle to himself. The rogue would have to do better then that. He was still delaying the inevitable.
He paused. He heard men running up the stairs to the door, leading into the ballroom. He growled loudly, he would have to return home empty-handed. He was in no real condition to fight trained guards.
With a growl he conjured the shadow portal to return home, and lick his wounds. “This is far from over rogue.” he stammered as he stepped through the portal and disappeared.
The door burst open and several guards belched forth and spread out into the room. They began to secure the area as one of them began to case the area for clues. It was all too evident from what some of them had heard, and the jagged gouges in the ground that there was a grand or epic battle that had been waged in the room. The commander of the guards, surveyed the scene with a trained eye. The nobleman and his wife had indeed been slain by an assassin, what happened afterwards, was not the work of an assassin however.
Too much blood and collateral damage had ensued. As he began to wander to the balcony, one of his men rushed up to him. The young cadet thrust a bloodied, shredded, discarded mask into the commander’s hands.
Joyenne stood up from the plush sofa, with a small giggle. Rainyia smiled and giggled as the third of her guests finished her tale. She showed off the bracelet she filched from her last unsuspecting date.
Joyenne walked over to where the wine was, she gently lifted the bottle from its resting place when she heard it. A dull, soft, thump from outside. Her senses honed far better then the others in the room, because of her craft. She was an assassin in training.
Without words or warnings, she slipped from the room towards where she had heard the thump. She opened the door to Rainyia’s room. She was sure, that the thump she heard was from this room. Her delicate green eyes scanned the room. Under her penetrating gaze, she saw no movement. She cursed herself that she didn’t have a proper weapon with her, but if need be a broken glass could prove just as deadly.
A shadow in the moonlight, silhouetted against the white silk curtains. An arm reaching from the floor of the balcony towards the handle of the balcony door. It sunk back beneath the wooden frame of the door as quickly as it rose.
She moved forward tentatively. She breathed in deeply as she flung the door to the balcony open. She wasn’t quite sure what to expect, but she didn’t expect to see a mutilated troll, laying in a pool of his own blood. She could tell from his garb, that he too was an assassin, an assassin that had apparently failed. Someone was sent to kill an elf in her city. She reached down to finish the job someone else started when she heard a small gasp from behind her.
She looked over her shoulder to see Rainyia moving forward with a look of genuine concern and shock on her face. “Help me get him inside.” she ordered to Joyenne.
The ladies quickly went to work in staunching any further blood loss, and cleaning up where he had left his mark on her balcony. Well before Rainyia started to work on healing him, he faded from consciousness.