The Hand

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Summary

To be a Blade is to be a useful tool. To be a Hand is to be more than a tool.

Genre:
Fantasy / Action
Author:
SnowShadows
Status:
Ongoing
Chapters:
1
Rating:
n/a
Age Rating:
18+

The Blade

“What's bothering you, Adept?”

That's Vicar. He's a Journeyman wizard just in from the road. His robes are thick and brown to keep the dirt of the roads at bay while he travels. He hasn't shaved or bathed since he arrived at the College, so his beard is still long and greasy along with his hair. He smells too.

“Just some personal issues, Journeyman. I'll work it out, I'm sure.” It's a lie, but it isn't something I want to discuss with this disgusting man. My own robes are dyed a simple green and I keep my hair cropped short and my beard cleanly shaved. I also bathe every day.

“Let me know if you change your mind.” He had a smile on his lips that didn't travel up the rest of his face. Someday, he'd figure out how to make his eyes smile at the same time and it would be much more difficult to spot his insincerity. Someday.

I nod and continue down the halls. I've enjoyed my time as an Adept at the Wizard College, but that's over now. Vicar's arrival was what I'd been waiting for these last seven months. Well, not Vicar specifically. Just a Journeyman who fit the bill: predatory, rough, and suspicious. Someone who just didn't quite fit.

I slip into the shadow of the corridor and the tingling sensation of transitioning into shadows runs over my skin. My movement is no longer restricted by things like weight and clothes. I flit under the door of the Arch Magus.

The Arch Magus is a kindly old man to the students of the college. But everyone is a villain to someone. Whatever he'd done wasn't my concern. This is my last job as a Blade. I will be one of the Hands and then it will be my concern. But not yet, not now.

Now I must simply put the athame into the Arch Magus' heart.

I'd just come from Vicar's room. The athame is his. It has his magic all over it. The transition to shadows is clean; it hasn't tainted anything with my own magic in years. Nor does it taint anything when I become solid again.

The athame slips between the man's ribs cleanly. His heart should stop immediately, a merciful death. He gasps and turns. This isn't right. He should be dead.

My free hand shoots out to cover his mouth. I pull the athame out and plunge it into his neck, just under his skull.

“I'm sorry. It should have been clean: a pinch, if anything, and that's it.” I whisper, because I want him to know.

The old man still had light in his eyes, but it was fading. He should have been dead already. I check the athame and realize it wasn't going in straight. I sigh.

“I'm sorry for botching this. I usually make things painless.”

I pull at the athame and drag it over bone. It resists, but I'm patient. It takes too long, but the old man goes limp. I pull the athame out and stick it into his neck at the correct angle just to be certain. It slides in with the correct amount of resistance. I leave it.

I become shadow again and flit to my room. It doesn't take long to reduce my robe and undergarments to ashes and scrub myself clean. I reduce the cleaning material to ashes as well before putting on a new robe and new undergarments.

No job is free of complications, but that was worse than most. I'll wait until they find the old man to announce that I'm leaving. I'll declare that I don't feel safe here anymore. I'll disappear on the road somewhere. And then I'll become one of the Hands that wields the Blade. And then I'll concern myself with why our targets die.

Continue Reading
Further Recommendations

chefron: Just loved how the tables were turned

Hayley Jane Seymour: Some spelling mistakes and grammatical errors but it is a great story and I have thoroughly enjoyed it.

Shreeya Sethi Grover: Really great book so far. Can’t wait to finish it

smscox326107: Really enjoyed reading this. Smooth transitions. Had a couple of spots where words need to be changed. I was left wondering if that they would have had a child though. 🙂🤷‍♀️

Jean: Reviewing before completion, because I am positively sure the rest will be as satisfying! Recommend it 100%

Marta MS: I love how the story is so different from other stories. Just love the plot, and there are still so many questions that need to be answered 🤗 it's so exciting 🌺

cjhawkins20: Your story line and characters come alive. The story stays active even after I’ve set the book down. Well done

Pernilla Waltersson: This story is really Nice a strong woman figure in The plot

More Recommendations

Jillian: I’m super excited for the next book, we got left on a cliffhanger! I am loving this series, really well done, you should be proud!

Mazlyn: This book is thrilling and amazing. It literally took me on an emotional roller coaster ride. I am absolutely a huge fan.

Alexandria Newell: It was good but the whole story should be there.

Maria Guthmiller Conley: This one felt shorter. But, intense. Painful & magical. Thrilling end with a twist I can't wait to read the next book to unravel.

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