CHAPTER 19 - Lycanthropy (4)
Celia watched from her window on the third floor, a bemused expression the only visible reaction to the proceedings in the back alley below. Alex and Quinn were staring down half a dozen city guards, trying to talk their way out of the predicament they’d gotten themselves into.
“Seriously, he’s a friend. He just took me by surprise while I was asleep. I’ll clean up the mess, I promise!”
Beside the white-haired soldier, Quinn nodded. It was interesting to see just how massive the man was compared to her ‘Master.’ Even hunched as he was, as if about to pounce, he stood a full head taller. The cloak looked about to split at the seams from the heavily stacked muscles beneath.
The guard at the back held his sword at the ready as they cornered the two men against the newly made wall.
“You truly expect us to believe you did THAT ‘in surprise’?”
“Umm, yeah? It’s a pretty common thing for MAGES, you know?”
“You claim to be a mage?” The guard was wary at Alex’s statement.
“No, I’m a member of MAGES. You know, the… Oh, shit, you wouldn’t know. Uh, yeah, I’m a mage.”
Celia laughed to herself as she watched. “Oh, Master, bad move.”
The guard who seemed to be in charge gestured and the others moved to surround the duo.
“Arrest them! We’ll show you to tarnish the name of the mighty mages of Arcadia!”
Quinn looked like he was ready to barrel through the guards and make an escape when Alex pulled something from his pocket.
“No, seriously! Here, my Status Plate, check it out!”
As the guard nearest Alex looked at their leader and got the okay, Celia frowned. Just as he was about to take the Status Plate, she called out from her window.
“Sorry to interrupt, gentlemen, but he speaks the truth. He is with me, so I’d appreciate it if you let this slide. My father will take care of any damages.”
The guards looked up in unison, and Alex briefly thought about how this would be the perfect chance to strike and break through. He held himself back as ALICE spoke into his mind.
‘Wait. She must have a plan.’
‘I thought you hated her.’
‘I do, but that doesn’t mean I don’t believe she can handle this. Did you forget her position?’
“And just who the fuck are you?” The head guard spat the question out with obvious disdain. Then a silver object flew through the night and smacked into his face before falling to the ground.
“That is 'who the fuck I am.' So I suggest you fix your tone before I have a talk with Daddy.”
Still incensed, the guard leaned down to pick up the plate, never lowering his sword in Alex and Quinn’s direction. He glanced down at the plate, and he suddenly looked like he was going to be sick. His sword fell to the ground, followed shortly after by the guard himself. He knelt, then prostrated himself in the direction of the window as the other guards looked on in confusion.
“Your Highness, my deepest apologies. Please, allow this one to explain-“
“No. Do not even bother. I know why you are here. My bodyguards made quite a mess, and it is only right that you acted the way you have. There are other sections of the city that require your observance. Go be there.”
The guard looked up from his position on the ground and nodded slowly. He held the plate as he stood and looked at it as if wondering what to do with it.
“Just give it to my guards; they will bring it to me.”
“Yes, Your Highness. Right away, Your Highness!”
Scrambling to collect his sword, the guard ran to Alex and pressed the Plate to his palm. He turned to the other guards and ordered them to move out, following in a hurry. Alex stared at the Plate and then at Celia. She just smiled in return and raised a finger, bending it in a ‘come here’ gesture.
“Bring the Lycan.”
Alex and Quinn exchanged glances. They both shrugged before Alex went to collect his gear. Once he had all of his belongings, he turned to Quinn and indicated the way back to the inn’s entrance with his thumb.
“You ever met a princess?”
Quinn shook his head, but he didn’t seem particularly surprised or frightened by the crazy turn of events. The opposite, in fact. He looked almost too calm for someone in such a precarious position.