Date With Death
Three hours after Jacob Tregaro’s untimely demise
It arrives at the domicile having backtracked carefully through Fallowfell to ensure that nobody is tracking It. As soon soon as It enters the house, the Mistress is at Its side. “Come. Upstairs. We need to discuss your performance.” The words are said in a frosty tone, one which It has learned to recognize over the centuries; the tone of displeasure.
It faithfully follows her to the circular room, which the Mistress once refered to as the ‘attic’. “Now what the hell did you today?” It cocks Its head at her, with the expression of a dog that has done something wrong, but know not what. “Rune Fallowfell.” “The boy that bit me?” “He bit you? Tell. Tell me what happened and leave out nothing out.”
It relays the events of the day. The Mistress voice thaws somewhat.” So little Runey bit you… I didn’t expect that. What will happen with him?” It shrugs in an uncaring motion. “He shall die– painfully, for my blood is poison incarnate.” The Mistress’ dark blue eyes swim… with emotion. She is connected to the boy somehow. “I used to be friends with his sister, you know.” She looks up at the ceiling, beseeching it for advice, hoping for something. The act makes her look softer, younger, more innocent somehow.
When no advice comes, her face grows emotionless and cold, the surface of a frozen lake. “Ah well. That innocent people were going to be drawn into my crusade– that is something I was prepared for.” Prepared to sacrifiece others for your goals, you mean.
“Now-” she pushes a button on the black-box and a young girl appears on the screen”- this is victim #2. With Tregaro’s death, we will have to be a little careful with the next assasination. Say, four or five days from now.” It looks at the girl. She has dark skin, like the Moors of Africa, big brown eyes, and hair of knotted rope. “Tregaro’s death was fairly simple; nobody knew you’d be coming. But this time the police, the teachers and others will be watching.” “Others?” “There is an old alchemist, an ancient warror and an archmage in the form of the school-nurse teaching at the school. Avoid them at all costs, especially the nurse. In addition–several of the students are less than human. Avoid them too.” It nods, and absorbs the information so that it may use it later.
“You will murder her at Ochre, but this time, you will have to survey the school in advance. You will you hide yourself-” she stops and look at him with a pensive expression”- you can hide yourself right?” It nods. ” Then you will leave tomorrow, and enter the school. You will remain hidden, for…. for a week, and then I will message you at the opportune moment.” It nods.
It looks at the girl, the seemingly kind girl. Indeed, I thought that the young man was innocent too. If the young man Tregaro was a rapist, then what has the girl done? “Maybe you’re wondering– what she and Tregaro has, or shall I say had, in common?” It inclines Its head. “Nothing. In fact, if Tregaro was a vile monster, closer to that of a animal than a human, then our little ‘President’ here is clean as a….” she puts a hand under her chin”- as pure as snow. Under different circumstances we’d probably be friends.”
It blinks at the Mistress’ frank admission. Click. The screen now shows a different image, that of a girl with pale skin, brown eyes and a burst of short red hair. “This one– this one is however not clean snow.I think of her as more of a patch of dirty ice. She is the kind of girl who likes to get under people’s skin, and play them against each other. In another time she would have made an excellent duchess– but this isn’t the Dark Ages.” There is an ugly emotion in her voice, one It has heard in the voices of other men; that of the scorned, the angry.
” You see, one day, a long time ago, I told this girl a secret. It wasn’t a particularly large secret, certainly nothing world-shattering, but for me it was big. I thought, young that I was, that she would keep my secret. Keep it close to her heart.” She grinds out the next sentence. “I was wrong. And although the years has gone by, I have forgotten that hurt. So when… when I came up with my little plan, I thought to myself; how I would go about to hurt her? At first I thought to just kill her. Kill her like the whore she is. But then the answer came to me.” She turns and smile at him.” I’d just kill her best friend.” Who is the vile animal here, truly? It nods.
It exploits the lull in the conversation and glances at a couple of thin sheets of pargement, nailed together with a spike of some white material.An almanac, the Mistress had called it. Even though it’s the ninth month of the year, the almanac has the month of October up, and one particular date has been marked by a red pencil. October 30th.
The Mistress clasps her hands together suddenly, startling It.
“Anyhow, I have got a date tonight. So back with you in the coffin!” The Mistress makes shoing-away motion with her hand. “Please I can-” “None of that now.Back in the coffin.”
The command-magic tightens its leash on It, and before It has time to put up a defense, It finds Itself in the basement, in the casket, with a hand on the lock. For a moment It entertains a notion of resisting the magic, just to show that It can. That It is not a slave. The moment passes, and It closes the casket.
With savage fury It bites Its own lip. Blue blood trickles down Its face and It growls.
One day. One day.