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The abyssal leftovers

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With a strong desire for a new life, a life of peace and long sunny days, Colter and Sylphin work their way in a decaying city looking for a way to escape their current situation. They have been working as mercenaries exploring the newly formed abyssal hole, but the business isn't going as they expected, so they changed plans to take a break and wait for information that could lead them to the life they dream on. This is where they notice something is off, something is changing, and before they get to handle the facts, they get involved in a bigger story than they are willing to risk their lives for.

Fantasy / Adventure
Age Rating:

A fire starts with a single spark

Darkness reigned during that night within the walls of the city. The soldiers were just beginning to light the chandeliers posted every few meters on buildings. Below one of them was the entrance to The Beer Turtle Tavern. Inside, people would gather to celebrate and share frothy jars of beer. The place was arranged with simple wooden furniture, and staffed by young women who attracted diners with plunging necklines and tight corsets.

At the front of the tavern was the main bar, guarded and served by a stout man with a gray beard reaching to his navel. Tonight he looked tense, contemplating a special table, the same one that no waitress wanted to approach. When the first round of beer mugs arrived at that table, the two people who were seated looked down at the waitress. She left that area as quickly as possible, but with the elegance that characterized her.

It was about a couple of men in military dress, who, after extinguishing the candle that lit their table, began to whisper between themselves. The talk gained momentum to the point where the low-voiced chat became screams,“We can’t let them get any closer, understand at once!“.

" They are already too close to react. It took us a while to notice their movements, we don’t stand a chance as we are now.”

The rest of the tavern fell silent as they heard the shouts, the musicians left their instruments mute, and the uniformed men realized their indiscretion. They sat back down, resuming their demure, sinister attitude. But it had already been too late, they had already attracted the attention of two other people sitting a couple of months away from hers.

It was a young woman with brown hair and turquoise eyes, her face with fine features, and a Greek nose. He wore a dark blue tunic with a small silver clasp at the neck to close it. Next to her, seated with his legs spread, a young man with a sober face, hair in a black ponytail, and deep black eyes. Wrapped in a black tunic, buttoned down the front with rabbit bones.

“So the abyssal problem has gotten out of hand.”

“Come on, Colter, we’ve come here to get away from all those issues. You know, I’m sick of battling with military bureaucracies.”

“This isn’t your run to the mill bureaucracies concerns, listen closely. This is something big, something that we must not oversee. This could be our chance to get our hands on the peaceful life we have been dreaming of.”

“Oh, no. You won’t lure me again with those sweet words, the last time we messed up with the military issues we got our asses burnt, don’t you remember?”

“Of course, I remember. But just give it a just, open your mind and think about this. Isn’t it unusual for you that a couple of high-ranking military men came to this tavern to discuss a military issue? This might be the real thing.”

“You got a point there, it is rare. Though, we all know that the problem of the abyssal is getting out of hand for the realm. If it were not like that, the mercenary movement would not have started ”.

“Even if you say that, something here seems suspicious to me. Why would they try to go unnoticed and whisper their affairs? “

“Go ahead if you want t“ believe that there is a conspiracy in the works. I am going to enjoy, forgetting about my problems deep in this beer mug.”

“I’ll look for you at the inn in a few hours, Sylphin.” Colter stood up from his chair at the table as the uniformed men left the tavern, mostly unnoticed.

“And again he let me pay for the drinks … How little education he has.”While Sylphin continued to enjoy the music and the drink, Colter had already left the tavern. It crept through the clinking shadows behind the military, hiding behind barrels and wooden crates. Both officers stopped in front of a renowned inn within the city, and between the exchange of words, one of them also received a piece of paper that he immediately put in his coat.

As they said goodbye, one of them entered the inn while the other, the one who received the paper, bowed, and continued on his way. As the latter turned around the corner and got himself immersed in a dark alley, Colter took advantage and cautiously approach and expertly remove the paper from his coat pocket. However, a city guard managed to see what happened after the uniformed man sneezed loudly, attracting his attention.

“Stop there, in the name of the realm! You filthy thief!”

“Excellent, the only guard who does his job spotted me.” As soon as Colter became aware of the situation, he ran into the backstreets behind the buildings.

With the guard and the uniformed man behind him, Colter sprinted around every corner he found. At some point during the chase, he found himself at a dead end.

The footsteps of their pursuers could be heard in the distance, going through the alleys from one side to the other, lost in the labyrinth that were those secondary streets.

“Well, it seems they are as lost as I am. I just have to find a way to get out of here without being seen.”

Determined to get out of that alley, he looked around for some way to escape without roasting through the entrance, he found some small scratches protruding on one of the walls of the buildings. With a bit of effort, but with singular agility, he climbed until he reached the roof and from there he found a way to return to the inn where he had stayed.

After moving over the buildings, he found the inn where he would spend that night, and with the same agility he entered his room through the window. The night was already completely silent as the moon was at its peak and his room in complete darkness.

Upon entering his bedroom, only a small pale light illuminated his nightstand.

“It took longer than I thought, I guess you’ve gotten yourself in trouble.”

“It wasn’t that bad, maybe they did see me getting something from someone, but they don’t know who I am or how I am.”

“Well, what have you found?” It had been, as always, a tag game with him getting away against all odds. This kind of ability, or maybe luck, was what impressed Sylphin most about his partner.

“So, I followed those two soldiers to a luxurious inn at the high end of the town. There, one of them gave this paper to the other before saying goodbye.” Colter pulled the piece of paper from his pockets to handed it to Sylphin. “What does it say?”

Sylphin took a couple of minutes to focus and analyze the content of the message before settling into the chair that accompanied the desk. “Who wrote this? A kid? The writing is a mess, with the letters spread as droplets on a river. Anyway, it appears to be some kind of safe place, some kind of safe house or shelter.”

“Do you know where is it? I would like to go, maybe a fast peeping won’t hurt anyone. Although I know you won’t want to go because you’re resting.” It wasn’t as he didn’t understand her feelings, he just wanted to tease her into the mood.

She took a deep sight before answering. “I think I could follow the instructions, they are not so clear, but it will not be so difficult to get there. While you were playing spy, I stayed in the tavern talking to the people who work there, and I got information that you might like to hear ”.

“So in the end, you do care what is happening.”

“It is not that the situation is alien to me, I simply have to see for my peace in the future.”

“Cunning as always. So where do we go?”

“To the warehouses at the east gate of the city, and from there we will improvise, I guess?.”

The next morning, with the first rays of light, Sylphin and Colter took to the streets until they reached the east gate. By the time they reached their destination, some merchants were arguing with the guards at the gate by not letting them pass. Sylphin and Colter took advantage of the confusion to enter the wall offices without being seen.

The offices were built within the city walls as a defense battlement. The cold rocks were an unmistakable feature of this enclosure. They went slowly and silently through the rooms of the place so as not to attract the attention of the soldiers until they reached a particular room. There, Sylphin discovered a trap door in the floor, covered by an old, earthy carpet. He lifted it gently, avoiding the squeak of the hinge. Below it, they found a wooden ladder that was lost in the darkness of the tunnel.

Colter was the first to descend the stairs with the company of a torch that illuminated his way.

“Doesn’t seem like anyone has passed through here recently. You can go down, it’s safe ”.

Together they made their way down the corridor that formed under the walls, the humidity permeating their noses, and the smell of earth and animal excrement mixed in the air. They had not advanced a hundred meters when a chamber opened before them with five entrances, including the one through which they entered.

Now where do we go? Did the map say something about this? ”

“No, it doesn’t say anything, but it’s not as bad as you might think. I’d even say he’s a bit lucky. There is a trace of energy coming from one of these corridors ”.

“Your ability to capture energy in the environment is definitely very useful.”

“Too bad it is not something valued by society, most see me as an enemy of social stability.” A few seconds of silence passed, as in shivering ice. Then she shook her head and continued. “Anyway, we don’t have time for this, follow me”.

The energy trail led them to a small room with empty cages of small size, and a slightly larger one in which a red-eyed wolf was locked. Almost no fur, and sharp fangs, drooling a substance that looks like blood, and accompanied by a stench of rot.The instant the beast saw them, it lunged with all its might against the bars of the cage repeatedly.

“What is a nether doing down here?”

The constant blows of the beast managed to break the bars between the doubts and questions that loomed in the minds of the two. The beast lunged at Sylphin, claws first, its jaws wide open. Colter’s quick reflexes managed to prevent Sylphin from turning into a corpse by stepping between them with a dagger at the snout. Taking advantage of the fact that the nether creature was locked in force combat with Colter, Sylphin murmured a few words and a needle full of energy crystallized from his hands. He took the needle with his right hand and surrounded it with light blue energy with his left, instantly the needle shot towards the beast, piercing its skull.

The nether wolf collapsed on Colter, imprisoning him under the corpse. After taking a breath, Sylphin lifted the beast off his companion and then fell to the ground.

“Give me a minute to recover, I need to sit down.” She was patting as a few lines of sweat lines her face.

“Whatever you need, we are clearly in a safe place.” Clutching his teeth, Colter closed his eyes and took a deep breath as if relaxing was a hard thing to do.

“Who, and why would someone put a nether beast under the city walls? It is too risky to have it here,

I wouldn’t want to think about what would happen if it escaped”.
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