Dusk (12)

04/27/2015 § Leave a comment

He has not been down in the cellar in a long while. It is a dank, dark place marked with a thick odour of salt fish and sour cheese, which makes him think of women, somehow, and so isn’t altogether unpleasant.

He finds his way further in, treading carefully, toward the lone jail cell in the back of the cellar. He has less than a quarter of an hour before two of his men will make their way down for another bout of questioning. It’s more than enough time for what needs to be done, but he is nervous, beyond nervous, because everything depends on this. His position. His future. Fail, and he will have neither. All the work and money he has put toward them will be for naught. And he will leave the Watch dishonoured and mostly likely crippled, if he is allowed to leave it alive at all. That much has been made perfectly clear to him.

Garrick feels the beginnings of another curse forming inside his chest, but stops himself short this time. He might, it occurs to him, just need the Lady’s grace, after all.

He finds the assassin chained to the wall, just where he is supposed to be. Only a pale mass of naked flesh, in darkness, reeking of human filth. Garrick has heard about this one, how stubborn he’s been, how outrageously defiant. The lad’s either a dullard or a bold little bugger, or possibly both. A single stroke of luck in this wholly unfortunate mess, for Garrick Bann. For if the lad had talked and gave up the name of his employer…

The assassin isn’t moving. His form appears limp, sagged, bent… lifeless. For half an instant Garrick finds himself hoping, relief already flooding his nervous mind—but then there comes a harrowing cough that wracks the man’s entire body, followed by a ragged inward breath.

The assassin lifts his head.

“You… Want… More…?”

The voice gives him a shiver. Garrick takes a deep breath to calm himself. He knows what he is here to do, what he must do. Which is a mercy, truly, yes, compared to what awaits the lad in the torturers’ chambers.

He takes a step closer, takes out his leather flask.

“I’m only here to feed you some wine,” he says in a flat, taut voice. “You’re no good to us dead.”

The assassin does not answer, but doesn’t object either, when Garrick brings the flask to his mouth and gently tilts his head back.

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