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Chapter 10: Jewellery
Day one of market had been busy, with over half of Kasta’s stock being sold to merchants who would take her magical items far-&-wide. A golden ring enchanted to bring vitality sold for ten gold pieces to a wealthy Lord. Kasta guessed it was for himself rather than his young wife.
The big sale of the trip was yet to be made. She expected a visit from a representative of Lady Flint of who had commissioned a special necklace. Some months ago Lady Flint sent an ancient parchment to Kasta, a family heirloom & recipe for a mystery enchantment.
- Look for the Lady’s rep? 50%
- Wait for market day two? 17%
- Send Michael to look? 33%
“Michael, pack up” said Kasta to her brother. “I’m going to see if I can track down Lady Flint.” She picked up a small strong box and placed it under her cloak out of sight.
She knew the noble woman’s entourage would be staying in one of the more salubrious hostelries.
Kasta walked along a number of streets, eyes wandering over the stalls closing down for the day. A number of pristine-looking inns in view. She looked at the first, The Elm Tree, and went inside.
A woman followed her a few moments behind.
- The woman watches Kasta 50%
- The woman attacks Kasta 33%
- Kasta finds Lady Flint 17%
Stepping quickly towards the corner of the room, the woman watched Kasta talk to the innkeeper who shook his head, pointed to the door, giving her some directions. She thanked him and gave him a coin. Kasta walked back out into the street and the woman followed.
Kasta walked into another inn, The Red Rose.
She spotted Lady Flint’s entourage, though she wasn’t present. Approaching their table with a smile, she greeted the man who’d made the order on behalf of the noble.
Kasta smiled, reached into her cloak and presented the lockbox.
- It was empty 46%
- The necklace was alluring 23%
- The woman attacked 31%
- The woman left 0%
The box sprung open & a look of embarrassment swept over Kasta’s face. She blushed a deep red.
“I’m sorry” she stammered. “I don’t understand. I must have picked up the wrong box!” She chuckled awkwardly, knowing that it was the right box & the necklace was gone.
Michael packed up the stall for the night. He knew his sister would be gone for a while so he would be free to find a dice game. He felt his luck was in, having won so well the day before.
His hand went into his pocket & gripped the necklace he had… borrowed from his sister.
- He is followed 13%
- He is attacked 25%
- He finds a dice game 44%
- He pawns the necklace 18%
He headed in the opposite direction of his sister and found his favourite Inn in town. A back room dedicated to dice & cards was close to full following close of market.
Michael nodded & joined a dice table. Another man joined them after him & they began to play.
Michael had some luck and the stakes of the game grew. The man who had joined the table after Michael kept looking at him, which made him a bit uneasy.
After some time Michael put his hand in this pocket and gripped the necklace, thinking to bet with it.
- he heard other’s thoughts 6%
- he felt his luck grow 25%
- time skipped backwards 31%
- dice on the table moved 38%
One of the dice on the table jumped from a one to a five. It didn’t go unnoticed, with the roller’s turn going from loss to win. One of the gamblers turned on the man. “You cheated!” The man looked dumbfounded and shook his head.
“No! Not me!” His eyes darted around the table.
Michael jumped up as the accuser pulled a dagger on the other player. He’d been losing badly.
Michael lifted his money from the table and said “Umm, I’m afraid that I have to leave, gentlemen”, turning around and heading quickly out as the fight escalated.
He was followed.
- Michael rushed to his inn 31%
- Michael’s attacked 8%
- Michael bumps into Kasta 46%
- Michael runs into a guard 15%
He turned a corner into an alley & almost walked into his sister, striding purposefully towards the inn where she’d likely find Michael. She was livid & it was plain on her face.
“What did you do with it?” she demanded, fully expecting the necklace to be sold or lost gambling.
Kasta looked up as a man entered the alley behind Michael. Soon after a woman closed off the end of the passage behind Kasta.
“What’s this?” Kasta demanded. “Come Michael” she said, making to leave, prompting the woman to draw a blade. The man pulled a wand.
- They lose the necklace 6%
- They use the necklace 53%
- Michael is killed 18%
- Kasta & Michael are captured 23%
Michael squealed in panic, reaching into his pocket to find a weapon, gripping the necklace instead.
The man with the wand started towards them. He suddenly lifted off his feet and slammed, head first, into the alley wall on his left, a sickening crunch accompanying it.
The woman, startled by the demise of her partner, turned to run but was also lifted off her feet.
Kasta recognised her as the thief from the road. “You! I knew that was no chance encounter! Who do you work…”
Her nose ran blood as her skull was crushed.
Kasta spun on Michael.
- “I didn’t mean to” 27%
- “She asked for it” 18%
- Kasta slapped him hard 45%
- Guards arrived
She swung at her brother with a full-armed slap.
“How could you? She was helpless!”
“I….I don’t know what I did!” He whined, rubbing his cheek. “I was just angry.”
“This wouldn’t have happened if you hadn’t stolen the necklace!”
“I just borrowed it. It’s just a necklace.”
“Idiot. This isn’t ‘just’ a necklace. It’s an heirloom artefact! Lady Flint will pay handsomely for this! A hundred times anything you’d have won with it!”
She shook her head.
“We need to get out of here. Back to the Inn. There may be more thieves looking for us.”
The fat bald man watched his two agents die in the alley through a small scrying pool on his desk. His hand thumped the table hard, rippling the pool and breaking the image.
Their crude overuse of Flint’s artefact made him grimace. Such disrespect.
He needed that item.
- Send a gang to the inn 38%
- Go to the inn himself 38%
- Try and buy the item 24%
Under the cover of darkness, the fat bald man led a group of ten men & women to The Dog & Barrel, a down-market Inn where Kasta & Michael had found last-minute lodging. The man entered the common room with a woman, leaving the others to cover the windows & back doors to the Inn.
He bribed the innkeeper & headed up the stairs to Kasta’s room. He nodded to the woman who kicked the door open, knife in hand.
Kasta was still awake, cleaning her new dagger. It was in her left hand glowing blue, enhancing her reaction time. The attacker’s dagger hit the wall.
- Michael investigates 15%
- Kasta fights the attacker 54%
- The fat man finds Michael 8%
- The fat man attacks Kasta 23%
The female attacker was not without her own enhancements, a solid and powerful punch hitting Kasta in the shoulder as she dodged the knife. Kasta staggered back into the table at the side of the room.
The woman was on her in a moment, pummelling her with both fists.
The fat man watched the fight like an umpire, a grin on his face, sure that his strength-enhanced employee would end this soon.
Kasta managed to switch dagger hands, a red glow appearing. The strength it gave her allowed her to weather the blows landing on her. She pushed back.
- Kasta kills the woman 25%
- The woman kills Kasta 0%
- Kasta knocks her out 42%
- The woman captures Kasta 33%
The fat man frowned & tapped a ring on his hand. More footsteps sounded up the stairs as two men came to reinforce their boss.
Kasta’s strength was enhanced so much by her dagger that her push sent the woman off her feet & into the wall, her head hitting hard. Her eyes closed.
The bodyguards stood in the doorway.
“Mistress Kasta” the fat man said.
She breathed heavily. “What do you want?”
“I’ve come to collect Flint’s heirloom”
Kasta shook her head. “How do you know about that?”
“It was never the Lady’s. It’s mine by right!” he replied angrily
- Keep talking to him 53%
- Dash for the window 40%
- Rush the bodyguards 7%
- Cry for help 0%
“Yours?” she asked incredulously.
“Yes. Mine. My cousin had no right to use it. She stole it from me.”
Kasta suddenly realised she had found herself mixed up in noble family politics.
“This has nothing to do with me.” Kasta said angrily. “I’m just doing my job.”
Kasta knew she was backed into a corner. Her options were limited. Was she ready to die for this item?
“Work for me” the man said, unexpectedly. “It’s that or die. I need that item & I can’t have loose ends.”
“Tell me more.” She said.
He made her an offer too good to refuse.