The Aresan Clan is published four times a week (Tue, Wed, Fri, Sun). You can see what's been written so far collected here. All posts will be posted under the Aresan Clan label. For summaries of the events so far, visit here. See my previous serial Vampire Wares collected here.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Aresan Clan pt 60

“Goat shit!” Mill swore with some bitterness. Anika cringed a little, and Mill apologized, “Excuse my speech.”

Mill stood from the bed, pushing Anika out of the way. “By Death’s Head, I don’t need this!” he swore again, walking towards the door. He stopped and looked back at Anika, who appeared to be hurt and confused.

“Excuse my swearing,” he said, “I promise I’ll be back. I promise, when I get back, I’ll tell you everything I’ve been keeping from you. These secrets, they gnaw my insides, and I need to spit them out. I just don’t have any time to waste right now. In fact, if you know anything about when Lipmon is leaving, I need to know.”

“I worry so much about you,” Anika said, some tears welling up in her eyes, “I know you’re involved in something dangerous. I know it. Know that I love you and I trust you, but I don’t want you to go. Something terrible is going to happen, and you’re not coming back.”

Mill paused and took a deep breath. “I love you too,” Mill said, taking her cheeks in his hands and looking deeply into her eyes, “And I don’t want to go either, but I have to.”

As he ran to the through the door, Mill said, “I promise I’ll be back.” Once outside, he zigzagged through the streets of Orinda at a rapid pace. He ran directly to the back of Merek and Maya’s cottage to look into the window through which he’d earlier seen Lipmon resting. But as he peaked within, he only saw an empty room, with a freshly made bed where Lipmon had rested.

Immediately, Mill turned around and ran to the front of the cottage. Just as he rounded the corner, he saw Lipmon walking out the front door, with Roderick providing assistance to the sickly man. Mill immediately hid out of sight of the two. Several attendants followed behind Roderick bearing a heavy, wooden chest and a bag of food.

As Mill watched this small procession, his mind began to rapidly consider his options. Lipmon had to be killed. Mill knew he was a damn fool for not doing it earlier. Mill drew a dagger from his bag and readied it in his hand. But he couldn’t do it here. He needed somewhere where Lipmon wasn’t surrounded by others, so that Mill could run up to him, stab him, and flee. Perhaps he could ambush him near the gates of the city just as Roderick and Lipmon were leaving. No, that wouldn’t work. Roderick would probably not be travelling by foot. Roderick would probably use his carriage. The road to Waldoon was flat and well maintained – ideal for travel by carriage. So he’d have to do it before they boarded the carriage. But where would they be boarding the carriage? The carriage wasn’t nearby. The streets were too narrow here. It would somewhere not too far, with wide enough access that a carriage could be moved in and out. Where could that be? A few options came to mind, but the town square seemed the most likely.

Mill left his hiding place as they faced away from him, darting across the street and hiding behind another building, as he edged his way towards the center of town. He ran down streets and cut through yards, all well out of sight of the more direct path that Lipmon and Roderick would assuredly be taking.

When he reached the town square, he peaked around a building to make sure that the party had not arrived. The square was an open space in the middle of the city where the ground was paved with stone and where many merchants set up their stalls daily to sell their wares. Waiting at the center of the square was a driver with horse and carriage. The wooden exterior of the carriage had been elegantly decorated with bright colors and intricate patterns. Leaning against it was the driver, holding a long driving crop in hand and impatiently waiting for his master to return.

Mill decided that the best place to ambush them would be just as Roderick and Lipmon were entering the square. There was a narrow, shaded path that intersected with the road where he expected them to pass. Hesitating no longer, he sped across the square and took a few steps down this path, until he was out of sight.

Perched behind a tree, he gripped the handle of the still-drawn blade, his sweat-wetted hands fidgeting and squirming in anticipation of the soon-to-arrive receptacle of his weapon.

<-- Go to Part 59         Go to Part 61 -->

You can see what's been written so far collected here.

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