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Printed from https://www.Writing.Com/view/2152078
Rated: E · Short Story · Fantasy · #2152078
I think I need to use the same 2.7 rather than number of drafts.
I stopped, closed my eyes and took a deep, what I hoped would be a calming, breath. The locator spell felt like the item was close but the image was muddled somehow. Like transparent images laid on top of each other. I entered an abandoned courtyard that glimmered in the moonlight. Time to use my Skill to check our immediate area. Pushing out my senses I found only the usual beings that lived in cities but no people in close proximity.
My partner Jack moved up behind me. "Connie," he murmured. "Odd there are multiple images with the locator spell. Let's find out why. Shall we?" He slid past me his hair glossy black in the moonlight.
I frowned. He was always so calm even though he was the red head, well a dark auburn. My hair, hidden now under a black stocking cap, would be shiny silver in the moonlight. Unlike my natural brown color. Had Jack ever noticed? FOCUS on the job, I told myself. This client could help us secure a coveted 'Finder' designation and move our team from amateur to professional.
Since we were close to the 'Find' I pushed my senses out to my limit. Loosing detail but gaining distance. Still no people, Good. I slowly followed.
Jack walked past several doors, pausing at each one just long enough to confirm the item we were after was not inside. He worked his way around the courtyard. Halting on the left side of a door frame he had turned so he was facing me. With his left hand he slowly pushed a door open. I stopped on the right side of the door frame. At his look, I said. "I can sense no one near us." We slipped into the room and shut the door behind us.
"Let there be light." Jack said, and a glowing ball was above his upheld palm. "That just never gets old."
I rolled my eyes. "We each have our Skill Set Jack."
The room was empty except for a folding table that looked new and had been overturned. I pushed the table aside and found what the locator spell told us was the item we had come for. Sort of, the glass rod we had been hired to find was described as an inch in diameter, two feet long and a red color. What we saw now were glass rods in many different colors laying in a pile. They seemed to be snapped in half. None of them were two feet long now and there were at least two shades of 'red'.
"I believe that might explain the multiple images." Jack said stating the obvious.
"Yes, but which of the 'reds' is the one we are after?" I sighed "I do not think our client will be happy about it being broken either. In this case I think we should take advantage of the optional 'Recovery' clause on this job. Much better to have the client choose between the two 'reds' in front of them, even if damaged, than just reporting the 'Find'. We will take them all. We can claim abandoned property. Turn the additional rods over to Jim and Ben." The other members of our team. Our 'Transport'. "Those two could have a use for the other colored rods or just sell them. Win-Win. Right?" Jack just laughed.
I pulled out a canvas bag wanting more cushion for the rods during transport and started putting them inside. Something pinged at the edge of my senses. I froze for a moment.
"Company?" Jack said as he cupped his hands around the glowing ball to dim the light as I finished.
I put the packed rods into Jack's backpack and moved to open the door as the light went out. We waited as our eyes adjusted before moving out into the courtyard.
"Which way?" Jack asked.
I was focused on the ping "The way we came, one, no two-people, 5 blocks away now. They have made several turns to ensure they continue moving in this direction."
"Right, another way then" Jack said as he moved away from where we entered toward the far end of the courtyard. He always knew his location. While I could become lost going around the block in the daylight.
With company, the plan would be Jack taking us in a circular route to the retrieval point. I just kept up. Keeping tabs on our company as we moved. Our partnership had an edge. If we got separated a 'Binding' we had inadvertently created little over a year ago ensured I could sense him specifically, ever since the job where everything seemed to go wrong and we ended up in a city's festival gathering that became a riot. I could 'Find' Jack and he could 'Find' me. It was not a location spell as used in "Finding" items but the result was the same. Jack believed we would also know if the other were injured but, so far, we had not had to test that theory.
"They are speeding up." I said. Jack and I broke into a trot as we left the courtyard. Oh, this was going to be fun. I could tell. I trotted along after Jack down alley ways, stepping in substances that I did not want any details on.
"Competitors for the 'Find?' Jack inquired.
"I cannot think of another reason they seem to be following us. Differing ideas of ownership opens the possibility of others trying to 'Find' the same item."
We moved faster.
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