Dungeon Crackers Chapter 5: Meeting with the Client

The party was in full swing by the time I arrived, and no one seemed to notice that the elders’ absence. Most of the population of the village was out in the roads, and there were fires illuminating the revelry.

I could still see the vampires, zombies, and other various undead on the borders. They looked like prisoners trying to break out, and it was the Gem of Abulon that kept them from breaking in. Hopefully, the village will keep its secret in order to keep its safety.

I noticed a lot of people looking at me, and I could tell the pieces they were putting together in their mind. For the last nine years, the Gem of Abulon had been outlawed, along with all other magic items. These people had been on the defensive against the undead since then, despite the promise that the Magic Wars would end magical strangers of the night. Now that I was hear, the Gem had suddenly been in my possession. I don’t think people knew whether to thank me or shun me.

I looked over and saw a very ugly statue. It was in the middle of a fountain, and it the monster was three times as thick as a normal human. It had horns like a bull and a ram, and more along his head that formed a crown.

I saw three kids with slingshots taking easy shots at the troll’s face, and I approached them as if I was a responsible adult who lived next door to them.

“You shouldn’t do that.”

“It’s just an ugly statue.”

“I realize that you’re not old enough to have ever seen a real troll. Like all other creatures of magic, most have them have gone underneath the earth after the Magic Wars. However, they can still occasionally feel vibrations, and occasionally extend their magic to the earth again.”

“You’re full of it, old man.”

“How old are you, twelve? Just because I’m twice your age doesn’t make me old. I’m not that old, but I know a thing or two.”

I smiled, and made certain that my voice was very loud for this next part. I already was fighting back laughter. “Even a loud voice can bring back some of the old magic!”

I took a torch from one of the boys and put it under the troll’s face. Grayon sneered at the kids. They left quietly, but speedily. When they were long gone, he was free to talk.

“How’d it go?”

“They went for the deal.”

“Splendid. Is Phoebe here yet?”

“She just got here. Have you seen Rolf? I checked all my pockets.”

Grayon’s eyes went up twice. I stood on the edge of the fountain so I could see the top of Grayon’s head. Rolf was in his usual drunk hangout in the midst of Grayons’ horns, holding a tiny flask.

“Hey, Tiran! Did you know that there are twelve girls for every male fairy on MistyMoor, and I still couldn’t get a mate?”

I stepped down and hoped no one asked why I was smiling.

“How much has he had?”

“About five drops. Don’t worry, he usually passes out by then. I’ll sneak out of here by that time. Does Phoebe have the next job?”

“She says she does. I’m supposed to meet our contact out here. I’m supposed to meet her by that bench over there, but I don’t know what he looks like.”

“Could it be a she?”

I saw that there was a woman in a hood who sat down, and she was alone. She also looked like she was waiting for someone.

“I guess that’s probably her. I’d better be going now.”

“She wants to meet with you? That’s unusual.”

“Yeah, I agree.”

I wanted to tell him that this was the one job that could mean there would be no more jobs, but I learned a long time ago that this promise comes often, and it is never kept.

I then bid good-bye to Grayon, and approached the woman.

“I understand that my associate wanted us to meet?”

The woman shed her hood, and I saw that it was Phoebe.

“Oh. I guess you’re going to be with us, too. You sure changed your clothes fast enough. Should I have changed too?”

She didn’t speak, and she kept staring at me. I felt a need to talk just to fill the dead silence.

“I guess the client backed out, didn’t they…”

“Tiran?”

She asked a question that she shouldn’t have asked. Somehow, I knew that she was not doing a joke.

“You’re not Phoebe.”

“No, it’s me, Madelyn.”

Madelyn is the person that I saw every time I looked at Phoebe. Since Phoebe is a glamour, she looks like the one who you most love. I thought that my personal image of Phoebe would someday change, but she never did.

Now the real one was in my life again.

So who is this mysterious Madelyn?  Find out in the next chapter, here

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