Mile or so outside of town on a low hill covered by evergreen trees lay three sleeping figures. A small camp fire was burning low and signs of a recent meal could still be seen. One of the figures turned over in his sleep, then with soft grunt sat up suddenly. He was peering into the darkness at the edge of the little camp.
“Back already?” He questioned the shadows.
“I did not mean to wake you.” A voice replied.
“You, of course, are not at fault Kennon. It is an old habit. How did it go?”
The man, Kennon, moved into the low fire glow and sat down next to one of the other still sleeping figures. He tossed the sack of coins that he had been given by Roland to the first man (whose name was Thaellen) who caught it in the air deftly as only an elf could do.
“Well enough I suppose. The innkeeper, Roland I think his name was, seemed genuinely frightened. He could not give much more information then what we have already heard. “
“It will do, I guess.” Thaellen said, weighing the bag of coins in his left hand. He stood up and walked to the last sleeping figure. Kennon leaned over and rapt the snoring person he had sat next to on the shoulder. “Wake up Kronin; it is time to get started.”
Kronin groaned and raised his head and glowered at Kennon, but said nothing. He thrust his thin blanket from his body and sat up. Kronin wore a simple black robe with a black rope for a belt and a hooded cowl to complete the ensemble. He was a warlock and was not fond of being woken up.
Thaellen was standing over the last still sleeping figure who was not a man at all but a large sleeping beast. At first glance it appeared to be a large feline, but once it moved it had very similar attributes to a large lizard. It was a dark grey color and had wide violet eyes that were staring intently at Thaellen even as he bent to whisper in it large point ears.
“I am wake.” The beast growled with humor. “It amazes me that we have been together so long, and yet you still seem to think that I am not always aware of your smallest emotions. If you are awake, dear Filas, then I most certainly am.”
Thaellen grinned as the large animal rose to its four legs and stretched grandly. “I forget, Blink, elves have long lives not perfect memories.”
“Not to mention overlarge egos…” Blink added.
“…and infuriating arrogance” Kennon laughed.
“It must irk you indeed to know that there are creatures out there that are just as alert and aware as your own race.” Kronin added humorlessly.
They all laughed.
“You are, as always, correct Warlock. I am more inclined to forget the extraordinary qualities of my long time friend here because we elves are far to self involved. It is something that I have fought against for some time now.” Thaellen laughed as he collected his things, and then added. “That is why I choose to spend so much time with you lesser races.”
With a flash, Blink’s paw whipped out and knocked Thaellen to the ground.
“Lesser race indeed.” The beast growled.
Kennon chuckled to himself. “We will leave in ten minutes, we have a long walk ahead of us, and we need to get started so when can be finished before the sun rises. “
To Be Continued