Rank 1: Farmhands
No one notices anything in this hellhole. Everyone who has a purpose here is focused on their own problems. Those that don't, are lost.
So the fact that the two shadows wrapped in black that were swiftly weaving toward the Arena were ignored shouldn't surprise you.
If you were brave enough to stare at one specific person for long you would see that they did not belong in the slave yards. People like them had the slave merchants brought to their homes to browse.
Their cloaks were of rich cloth and expensively tailored. Their footwear was well made and polished.
The one in the back was a small female. Her hair is brown, braided to her waist. Her heart-shaped face is sweet, and her eyes are a velvety brown. Typical tabby werecat.
The one in front is definitely all male. Tall, dark, handsome, muscled, tanned, he has it all. His step is softer than that of the werecat behind him.
He turns to the girl and smiles, his fangs baring slightly, his black eyes tender as he waits for her to catch up.
The vampire wrinkled his nose as they progressed through the slave yard. His heightened senses were far too easily offended.
The werecat looks up at him nervously. she remembers far too well a time when she was chained in such a yard.
He smiles comfortingly at her, but his mind is elsewhere. He was remembering the reason he was here in this filthy pit.
As they neared the far end of the field they could see the small gate carved into the side of the cliff that opened into the Arena. The King's flag hung limply in the stagnant air.
The guards jumped to attention when they saw who was coming. The gate had no door and was guarded constantly. Most were searched before entering the Arena from the yard. But none was necessary and they entered without a hitch.
The vampire glanced around as they entered the giant cavern and breath the cool air. His gaze fell on a silver tent, bearing a nobleman's crest.
He strode off toward it, leaving the werecat to follow behind.
He stood before the tent, taking a deep breath to steel himself. Instantly he wished he hadn't. The smell of fresh blood attacked full-force as he pulled the flap open. The werecat growled quietly behind him.
"Ah, Your Royal Highness! You've arrived!"
"Yes, I have. And you've been beating your merchandise again."
"Ah, well, Your Highness," the fat little sputtered, sweating, "These slaves were in Lord Roschter's household. Their discipline was lax, and they have no respect for their betters."
"To some, perhaps." replied His Highness, eyebrow raised. "I also know that you enjoy disciplining your household to a fault."
The man began spluttering and groveling as he attempted to defend himself. The vampire lost patience.
"By Great Ursa herself, just show me the damn slaves."
The man shut his mouth with a clap, turned and waddled to one of the mini tents that had been set up inside the larger one.
He grasped a torch and ordered one of the giant Numerian slaves to open the tent.
The man took the blue tarp off the poles, uncovering the iron cage underneath.
Both of the guest winced at the sight.
In one corner two females, a woman and a girl huddled together crying quietly. In another, one man lay on his stomach while another tried to clean blood off his back with a ragged shirt.
The fifth person caught the attention of the vampire, though. He had risen when the cage had been uncovered and stood between his companions and the intruders.
His body was small, his features delicate. His aura was one of confidence. He glared at the fat merchant, baring his sharp teeth.
The vampire grinned suddenly, turning to the blushing werecat. She had defied her master the exact same way when he had found her.
They both studied the man. His hair was long and had been well taken care of at one point. His clothes had been of high quality. His nails had remnants of paint. His strange dichromatic eyes were fiery, but held a world of pain.
The women looked frightened for him but said nothing. The men poised themselves, ready to help if needed.
They all shared some features. No doubt they had all been bred from the same parents.
The vampire looked at them then turned to the cat.
"Kisa, go and fetch Dwayne and Martin. Tell Dwayne to bring this amount," he showed her fingers, hidden from the others. "Martin is to bring clothes for a 15-year-old girl and bandages."
"Right away Master."
"You've decided then?" said the little man, hopefully.
"Yes." The vampire considered. "What will happen to the ones I don't take?"
"They'll be sold to the Arena." The Vampire's eyes widened.
"They are all warrior class?"
"Oh, yes, Highness. They are all Rank 16(*). They each have other ranks, too."
"Really?" Tell me about the girl then."
The man's eyes lit up. "She is truly a fine specimen. Rank 12 and 16 for her Warrior class. She also has several Companion class ranks. 8,9, 10, I believe. Perfect bodyguard for your children, eh, Highness."
The girl glared and "Highness" chuckled.
"If she doesn't cut their throats. You are looking farther into my future then I have." he laughed. "And the one on the ground with the bloody back?"
"Ah, he would be a good challenge for your Highness He has quite the temper. He also has Pyrokinesis. Rank 16 of Course. And 13"
"Excellent, I love challenges. And that other female?"
"She's a rank 16 as well. They all are. She is also a 10. Why she isn't an 11 is a mystery to me, but she is feisty. Perhaps that is why."
"Purity in a warrior is good. Slutty warriors make shitty battles."
She glanced up, startled at the statement, but he moved on to the next one. "Electrokinesis?"
"Yes, Rank 9, 14, and 16."
"Hmm, I can see the sparks flying."
He was back to studying the dainty fighter. "He's a fine looking one."
"Yes, he is." The fat man's voice was dripping with lust. "Rank 11, you know. Had to check for myself that he was a male." He laughed.
The vampire looked at him in disgust as the man growled angrily.
"He is also Rank 15 and 16, officially. How ever he was trained in every rank from 8-18, er, 17..."
"You can train to be a Rank 17?" interrupted the vampire, grinning at the little man's discomfort.
"Stop teasing the gentleman, Reign." trilled a voice behind them.
The werecat had returned followed by a male werebear and a human woman.
The werebear walked up to the cage, looming over the little man to see in. The man was sweating so hard Reign was sure he saw the grease melting.
"These the ones you're buying?" His deep voice vibrated in his chest.
"Yes, what do you think?"
"I think you're crazy. But I do see potential in them."
"Oh, I don't care. All I do is clothe them. Just hurry it up. I have a party tonight."
Reign rolled his eyes. "I'll take all five of them, 10 gold each and their combined weight in silver. Will that suffice?"
The man's eyes got so big it was comical. The slaves were shocked.
Dwayne groaned and rolled his eyes upward in a silent plea for sanity. Martin blinked rapidly.
"That's exor, er, fine, fine." The man rubbed his pudgy hands together with glee.
"Good, I'll take that key then."