Part 1-Chapter 2: Gruesome Death
5:30 a.m. City Watch Headquarters:
Lieutenant Lair’s snored in his large wooden chair. A fire happily crackled in the background devouring the pine logs. The window of his second story office allowed the first rays of dawn to peek into the room. Lt. Lair slowly began to slide farther back. His feet seemed to be losing the traction on the desk. Suddenly, his clerk burst upon the shut door.
"Sir!” he shouted.
Lair woke startled, let out a sharp yelp. He tried frantically to grab onto something as he tipped over. He landed on the wooden floor with a dull thud- his legs standing awkwardly up in the air. He bolted up and screamed, "What is the meaning of this Torag! Damn you!”
"I-I’m sorry sir” he said hesitantly. "I was not aware you were sleeping. He slowly stepped closer to the desk. He grimaced as Lair’s glare ripped into him. In his hand he held a large envelope. "This is for you sir; its from Major Willsom concerning a murder that occurred last night.” He quickly set the envelope on the oak desk.
"Where did it occur.” Requested a more relaxed Liar asked. His demeanor had change quickly and his face now resided expressionless.
"From what the courier said it occurred at the Market Square, and that the blood is still rather fresh.”
"Meaning…,” said an impatient Lair.
"Meaning that the murder happened only a few hours ago,” replied Torag. He reached up and pushed his spectacles farther up the bridge of his nose. "I have your horse waiting outside in the stables, and I’ve also contacted Pierce and Thorne telling them to meet you there.”
"Very well, Torag, fetch me my cloak and gloves.” He paused, biting his bottom lip. "Um…Torag, how many dead?”
"They can’t tell, sir.” Torag stood there for a second after finishing his last comment. Slowly he turned and exited the room-his shoes thudding on the floor.
5:45 a.m. The City: Market Square
Major Willsom had never seen so much blood in his life. One could never consider him a coward, however, he could tell the others were rather disturb by the scene has well. As soon as he had heard about what had occurred he had rushed to the scene from the east city gates. Apparently from what he had gathered-a watchmen around 4:05 a.m. had found a severed arm in an alley behind the Crippled Burrick Pub. From that point he had followed a trail of blood to the end of the alley where he found about two or three people. At that the chap- a young recruit about 17 or 18 years old-suffered a nervous breakdown and ran screaming aimlessly until he ran into another watchmen. The watchmen had to finally hit the poor lad over the head. At that point this watchman located the crime scene and contacted the east gate office. Finally Major Willsom arrived at the scene- which by now had a large crowd gathered round.
"Please stay back!” yelled a frustrated guard. The crowed surged forward trying to get a better look at the gore. No one could blame them for their interest; the City needs excitement once and while.
"Major-Major Willsom.” A voice entered the Willsom’s train of thought. He shook his head try to wake his tired and hazed mine. He lifted his body from his squatting position and turned.
"Good day to you sir. My name is Lt. Lair…I don’t believe we’ve had the honor of meeting before.” Lair stretched his hand, but immediately withdrew it at the sight of Willsom’s bloody glove.
Realizing, Major grinned sheepishly. "My apologies Lieutenant-I was just trying to find some identification on one of the victims.” He lifted one of his gloves and picked off a piece of flesh.
"Oh…don’t worry about. So what have you found out so far?”
Major turned and pointed to a mutilated cadaver near the fountain. There is one body over there and as far as we can tell there is three in that alley.” Willsom shifted his pointed finger to small alleyway directly to the right of Lain. "We can find any way of identifying the bodies in the alley but that one by the fountain seems to be a rich son-of-.”
"Please keep your obscenities to yourself Major.”
"Either way we found this ring on the man’s finger.” He pulled off one of his gloves and reached into a small bag he had tied to his waste. Willsom pulled out a handsome gold ring that had a strange design imprinted on it.
Noting Lair’s puzzlement the major tossed him the ring. Lair caught gingerly and held it up to the morning light and examined it.
"This design looks vaguely familiar; I know it belongs to one of those noble families-am I right?” He shifted his gaze to Willsom’s face and searched for an answer.
"Yes, one of my older chaps recognized as the Carshal Family’s coat of arms. He said they’ve been in the city for as long as he could remember. Said though he hasn’t heard of them for quite some time. He also said they use to live in the Hammerite District-so we’ll likely have trouble finding them.
"I see…anything else of importance?”
"Yes, this piece of brown parchment we found by one of the victims.” Willsom pulled out a piece of brown paper and handed it to Lair- who in turn quickly scanned the note.
And strike the innocent
The flames shall drink their blood,
Men shall die but rise to face their brothers,
They empty with hate of the living
Looks of puzzlement spread over the Lt. face as he finished. "Interesting” he muttered quietly. "Can I take this back to headquarters?”
"Everything is headed their either way. I don’t really give a damn-take it if you want.” Major yawned and walked toward the Crippled Burrick Pub, no doubt wanting a stiff drink to come his nerves. Lt. Lair smiled.
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