I can’t stop thinking about it. I mean, I’ve seen death before, sure. I’ve dealt death before. But I’ve never seen anything like that. But maybe it was my imagination. In a blink of the eye it was over – the statue was back in the centre of the room – like it had never even moved at all. But I can’t get it out of my head. That…thing…reached in and just pulled out the poor bastard’s soul. It makes me nervous. That whole place should be destroyed – there’s something really bad about it. Again, I’ve seen bad, hell, I’ve been bad. I never really dealt in ideas of good and evil before, but I think that down there….well, I think there’s something evil. I don’t know if I even want the loot we stole from that crazed idiot. I would put it back if it meant that I could forget about the horrible statue and what it did. Well, I would think about putting it back….
But I gotta shake it off – keep my eyes on the prize. I flaked when we fought those scum bandits today. And that Kessel took a piece right out of me – before I even got the chance to spit in her face. And seeing little Zel go down like that? Abadar’s balls, I must be getting soft. Shook me, it did. Kinda reminded me what happened to our little group before I got nabbed and thrown in that cell. I thought we all might go down on that one. Drogov and Kaspar had taken the worst of it – and I was on my last legs, fanning wide on every shot! Weakling.
And then in rode the most noble Lord Karl, not a scratch on him, to save the day. My knight in shining armour – and me the maiden fair. Haha – that’s hilarious. But, in he rode, armour shining, dispatching that ugly bitch with a few simple moves. Then he looked around like he didn’t understand what had happened to all of us – why we were all brought low by one opponent. That burned me. “Thanks for saving us, your lordship! Now get off your fucking horse and give me a bandage before my insides fall out!” Of course he went to Zel first. Whatever. Hope they have little babies with green fucking hair.
But I gotta say we lucked out. Sir Karl’s mandate that we take any prisoners who surrender to us dropped a lovely little present into my lap. Two of Kessel’s merry band of fuckwits turned into songbirds once we had them back at Oleg’s. With creepy Kaspar and the mad alchemist at my back, I was able to get some useful info from those two hapless losers. Apparently Yakob is up to his old tricks. Looks like these guys had been duped by that fat bastard as well. Piece of shit rode off into the night with a satchel full of loot and some bottles of fairy wine – which apparently are worth more than gold to this “Stag Lord”. To hear these guys tell it, that crazy fucker is addicted to the wine and will stop at nothing to get it. The fact that Yakob ran off with 4 bottles of the stuff landed these guys up shit creek. We now have the rest of the bottles, and if they are as valuable as these guys are leading us to believe, then it might be something we can use to deal with the Stag Lord, whoever he might be.
But I have more important business now. I knew it was just a matter of time before that snake Yakob would poke his head up from underground. And now that he has, I can’t waste any time – he’s slippery, like a worm, and given any time he’ll disappear, like he always does after he pulls a job. So I have to leave tonight. While his trail is a few days old, I should still be able to pick up on it…
I can’t tell Sir Karl. He’ll either lecture me about “going off alone”, or lecture me about the “shallowness of personal vendettas”, or lecture me about “duty” and the stupid fucking charter. Or Abadar forbid he insists on coming along “to protect me”. Haha – fat chance. No. I can’t tell anyone. Once I deal with that traitorous piece of shit Yakob and have his tongue as a trophy, I’ll come back and help these kids with their maps and treasure. Hell – I’ve bagged more loot in the small while I’ve shacked up with them then I usually did with my own crew in the same amount of time. In fact, what we’re doing here doesn’t seem much different than what I was doing back then, except for the fact that now it’s legal. Gotta love the way the Empire works. But I would never say this to the kids. It might take the shine out of their eyes if they thought they were glorified bandits. I’ll just keep being the ugly one for all of us.
But all of that will have to wait. Yakob needs to pay for what he did. I still miss Alexei, Gala and Ilari. Especially Alexei – he was a better, smarter, tougher leader than that bitch Kessel ever could be. And he looked out for us in his own way. I don’t know what happened to Gala and Ilari. Probably the Salt Mines…. But Alexei – he would never bend. I still remember the day the gaolers teased me with the news of his execution, but I wouldn’t give them the satisfaction of letting them see how much it killed me. No. I would survive this and I would make the man responsible pay the ultimate price. And now’s my chance.
You better run, Yakob, because I am coming for you. And I will not rest until I hold your dead heart in my hand.