Dirkennion calmly walks up the road approaching the town gate to Dillingham. The gate is manned by twin brothers from a simple watch tower and walkway over the road. Upon seeing him, one lifts his crossbow while the other holds up a hand.
Dirkennion displays empty hands. “My name is Dirkennion Singh. I was requested by your constable, Marvella.”
The two brothers whisper to each other. One descends a ladder to get Marvella. The other says, “Would you kindly wait there?”
“Fine. Would you kindly put down your crossbow?”
Soon, Marvella approaches and a twin opens the gate for her. “Greetings,” she says, sizing him up. “You…you are…Dirkennion?”
“I am. Your letter spoke of an urgent matter.”
“You got here quickly.”
He looks back down the road he’s traveled. “I am accustomed to fast travel.”
She comes closer, tentatively.
“I do not bite,” he says.
She clears her throat. “I, uh, my apologies. I have never encountered your…kind before.”
“Ehara often have that effect. The urgent matter?”
“Yes, um, sorry. I have bad news.”
Dirkennion and Marvella are carefully walking down the old dock toward the body. The fog has thinned out. Dirkennion steps slowly with his boots on the most-supported parts. Marvella notes this. The dock creaks beneath them.
“How, may I ask, is your kin involved here?”
“Unknown,” Dirkennion says, coming to the corpse. “Behrattia.” He kneels and examines the body with care, but shows little emotion.
“He said, ‘They took the Prince of Endless.’ Do you know what…?”
Dirkennion stands up, focused. “Endless. Endruskenlessinia? The prince is but a boy, perhaps ten years of age.”
“A little boy?”
Dirkennion approaches the boat, looking it over. “This is a merchant vessel. It came from the east. The nearest port to here is Morondava.”
“Between here and Endless, right?”
“Correct.” Dirkennion glances at her. “Ehara do not meddle in small affairs. If you will permit a few moments of privacy, I will then be underway.”
“To find your cousin’s killers?”
“His path has ended. I go to rescue the prince.”
Marvella grows intrigued and excited by this. “Do–do you need help?”
She glances back toward the town. “Would you accept help?”
He looks at her. “You are a town constable.”
She shrugs. “Ibix will be upset, but he can handle local pickpockets for a few days.”
“If you are are offering, then you will need a horse. And supplies.”
to be continued…