King of the Seditious

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An Empty Storehouse

Harridan Hamlet, Dread Country

Chavias was making the long trek to Dread Country. Evening was drawing close. As customary the demon had sent Chavias to raid Harridan Hamlet on the edge of Dread Country. Knowing by now they’d have a healthy stockpile.

Chavias caught the scent of a dead deer in an alleyway behind some booths. The slightly rotted stink of it immediately drew the attention of the demonic dogs, Targue and the demonic rodents, nonis, with him.

Chavias walked faster to the storehouse.

Just as he reached it, a voice from a nearby rooftop, stopped him outside the swinging doors. “There’s nothing in there.”

Thadeus, Chavias’ crow, shrieked in objection. Turning his head to look at Savage Jaxson, the bird shifted restless feet.

“I thought not. He’ll be displeased.” Chavias rotated to spot Savage Jaxson crouched on the peak of the bakery roof. Next to the storehouse.

“Is he ever pleased?”

“No.” Chavias grunted.

“Are the Firoque starving?” Savage rose and thoughtfully walked to the pointed peak to draw nearer the Southern edge. Peering down onto the road to see if the demonic beasts were catching up to Chavias.

“They are.”

“Is it worth the torture?” He asked tonelessly, crouching again to watch the road.

But Chavias knew what he asked. “Yes.”

“Good.” He didn’t move. Twisting a bit of leather in his fingertips. “Are you ready yet?”


Savage Jaxson didn’t push the subject.

But he wasn’t leaving either.

“What’s on your mind, Lad?”

“I took the girl with the light.”

Chavias nodded slowly. “Have you hurt her?” He felt the need to ask though he hoped he knew the answer.


“Are you fond of her?” Chavias probed.


“Good.” Chavias nodded slowly. “She’s important.”

“She is.” It wasn’t a question.

“Where are you keeping her?”

“At the Blue Lark.”

“Is she safe there?” Chavias asked guardedly.

“I keep her safe.” Savage Jaxson looked up and met Chavias’ look solidly. Blue eyes to gray eyes.

“What about when you’re not there?”

“They don’t cross me.” He rose and walked the roof absentmindedly.

Chavias was sure Savage Jaxson did retain total control of the Assassin’s Guild. “You’d make a fine King.” He thought aloud.

“What fool would make me king?” Savage reached the back peak of the bakery and looked back at Chavias. “I like her.”

“I’d gathered that.”

“I want to keep her.” He looked down and they both heard the Targue coming down the road. Savage’s bait, the dead deer, consumed.

“Savage Jaxson?”


“Be gentle with her.”

“I try.”

That made Chavias grimace.

He drew a shaking breath. Telling himself to trust the boy that’d never let him down. But he couldn’t picture Savage Jaxson being gentle with anyone. Woman or man.

Cringing, he spun and looked at the doors of the storehouse. Throwing them open to reveal the barren interior as the demon dogs flanked him.

Howling in misery to see it was empty.

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