A cold blue flickering light caught her attention. It flittered and danced at the edge of her vision, surrounded by strange, haunting whispers. Echoes of the life it had once led. Ahren felt the change in her and sighed with a small mocking smile.
The talisman of the Gatekeeper hanging at Wolf’s wrist was her first and only warning of the attack before a thick rusted blade swung out of the shadows. She pulled back just in time, feeling the rush of cold air as the clumsy hunk of metal that passed for a greatsword rushed by her face.
Ghostly whimpers and whispers filled the air, and the temperature dropped once more. They held their breath as they considered the options, but they all felt the change in the air as the beasts caught their scents.
Seeing the meat sloughing from their bones, the sinew snapping, turned her stomach. Their wrappings had unravelled and hung off them, along with strips of skin, fluttering in a breeze Wolf could not feel.
With hints of powder blue scales, matched by her eyes and hair, her Wreika heritage was evident. Somewhere in her lineage was a blue wyvern, a fearsome and mystical creature, the likes of which was rarely seen in the current age. With her pale skin, fair as snow, and nails shaped into talons, Ninian looked ethereal and dangerous.
Smoke and steel drew her, threads of gold and silver dancing in what was left of her vision, leading the way. She murmured a prayer of thanks to whichever gods were listening that there were no mercenaries in the alley. She no longer had the strength to keep up any kind of façade.
The words echoed and dragged Catryn reluctantly back to the last time her sister had said that. A young man with a face she had known from her childhood stared up at her. Eyes as blue as his cloak, wide and pleading.
Catryn’s grip tightened on her knives, but she stood slowly. Forcing her muscles to relax, she lifted her chin and desperately tried to calm her frantic mind. She could not afford to panic against this man.
Exotic paintings and carvings, which Arabella had gathered on her travels, were tastefully scattered around the rooms. Incense burned in the darker corners, where there were lounge chairs and interesting blown glass ornaments.