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Unknown Guild

Author: 
Vargon Shadowstar (Jeremiah Johnson)
Old Vault Category: 
fanfiction
Old Vault ID: 
234

Vargon Shadowstar stroked his neatly trimmed goatee in anticipation of his forthcoming visitor. Lord Kar'tzal had been a thorn in his side for far too long. Far too long indeed. It was long past time that his little games be exposed for what they were.

From down the hallway, the drow's keen ears heard the echoing clacks of footsteps upon the tile floor outside of his office. With an insuppressible grin, he placed his gloved hand on his simple darkwood desk and tapped rhythmically, in a method that seemed almost rehearsed. As the visitor's telltale steps neared the closed door, Vargon quickly composed his face into a masterpiece of calm and stoicism.

After a curt knock of warning, the portal was opened and a roguish dark elf clad in dark leathers strode confidently in.

"Ahh, Zoraiyan! I trust that our friend Kar'tzal has arrived?"

"Of course. Right on time, as usual." Saying this, Zoraiyan turned and motioned towards the hallway outside the darkened circular office. A pompous dark elf, his nose pointed towards the sky jandered in, brushing imaginary dust from his gaudy and neatly pressed doublet. He avoided Vargon's gaze as he watched Zoraiyan produce a hard, metallic chair for him to sit in. With obvious disdain, the noble elf lowered himself slowly into the contraption, squirming as he did.

"I pray that the amenities meet with your approval, Kar'tzal." Vargon piped up, in a voice far more cordial than he felt.

"They are... inadequate. You could show a little more respect for nobility such as myself. I have more riches than you could ever possibly imagine, and with those riches, I could buy your life a thousand times over." fumed the visitor indignantly.

Vargon chuckled aloud, "And yet still you come to me asking favors."

"Although your manners are not acceptable, your services have been more than useful as of late."

"I see. Go on," Vargon replied patiently.

"There is a certain dignitary in this city who has been troubling me. I believe that he is attempting to discredit me among my peers. I want him eliminated."

Vargon pretended to be taken aback by this revelation. His eyebrows arched in an expression of shock and he sprung to his feet, leaning forward and placing his hands on his desk. "You want us to kill for you? We are not assassins, my friend."

The nobleman scowled and leaned forward as well, bringing his face within inches of Vargon's. "You will do what I pay you to do. If you decline this job, I will not return the next time I am in need of your services."

"I am deeply sorry to hear that." Vargon took his seat again as his face once more became a mask of perfect blankness, void of all apparent emotion. "Zoraiyan, please show him the door."

The dark elven noble leaped up and pounded his fist on the desk. "Damn you Vargon! You're a fool! You could be rich off this job, and yet you refuse!"

"Perhaps I could become rich. But what use would that be to me if I was somehow caught? I would be hunted in my own lands. That is not good business, my friend." Vargon said in a businesslike tone.

The furious elf, seeing an opportunity, pressed on, "I know you. You're too good to be caught. The last few jobs I hired you for were much more difficult than this one, and you performed them without stirring up even the slightest amount of trouble." He began to gather his emotions, and once again spoke in a practical voice, "Please. I beg you, reconsider."

"You have my answer. Please leave now." was the stony reply.

Veins bulged in the visitor's forehead as he glared at Vargon with untold layers of revulsion. Spinning quickly on his heels, the noble stomped towards the door, only to be stopped by that same emotionless voice.

"Kar'tzal, one more matter."

The lord glanced over his shoulder, "What?!? What is it now?"

"I wish to speak with you about your treachery."

Kar'tzal's eyes widened in disbelief, just as he felt a sharp tug on his neck, followed immediately by a short, loud snap. His hands went directly to his throat, and finding it bare, he glanced at the wall to his right. A glittering golden necklace lay pinned against the wood by a deadly sharp dagger. Swinging his head to the left, the noble saw Zoraiyan grinning widely at him, his hand brandishing another throwing knife.

With a deep, heartfelt sigh, the noble returned to the iron chair and sat, his now pale skinned face grim. "How long have you known?"

"We have known you possessed a necklace of illusions since you first came to us. We did not, however, know your true race until now." Vargon told him, in the same cold voice as earlier, no surprise whatsoever showing on his features.

"What will you do with me now? I suppose you cannot very well allow a surface elf to walk among your kin."

"I wish to know for what purpose you are here."

"That I cannot tell you..."

"Very well. I have other ways of obtaining this information. You may take your necklace and go."

The elf pretending to be lord Kar'tzal's eyes widened again in shock. "Do you toy with me? Like the cat with a mouse, you wish to let me think I have escaped, only to kill me one step away from safety. I will not allow this. Do what you will to me now."

Vargon's lips began to curl into a sneer, and suddenly, uncontrollably, booming laughter rolled out from his jaws. "You think that your life is so important as to warrant such a time consuming game? You are more full of yourself than I had previously imagined! Now go, before I change my mind."

A faint glimmer of hope shone in the elf's eyes. He cautiously stood up, and at a gesture from the still laughing dark elf behind the desk, he turned towards the door. Zoraiyan strode past him, retrieving the dagger from the wall and handing the shining neckwear back to it's owner. Kar'tzal fastened it once again to his neck, assuming the form of a dark elven noble once more and strode purposefully towards the exit.

The laughing behind the desk suddenly drew to a close. "Kar'tzal, err, whatever your true name is. One more thing."

The elf's shoulders slumped visibly, as the last of his hope was deflated. "Yes?"

"You do now realize that your life belongs to me. Everything. You may keep your fortune, just to keep up appearances, but you will pay me monthly a fee of one half of your earnings. In return for this, your identity will remain hidden, and your motives will remain your own."

The noble's head dropped even further into his chest as he muttered under his breath, "What choice do I have?"

Zoraiyan opened the door for him, and the elf impersonating Lord Kar'tzal took his leave, thoroughly defeated. The door was once again shut and locked before Zoraiyan turned to his friend Vargon and laughed aloud.

"I am sorry to have made you seem but a servant, Zoraiyan, but it was necessary for the proper environment." Vargon said, almost apologetically.

"No worries. The look on his face as I removed his necklace was more than enough reward for me." Zoraiyan said with a sly grin.

Just then a lithe feminine form emerged from the shadows in the rear of the room, placing her hands on Vargon's shoulders. "Well done, brother. I didn't think you had it in you."

"With both of you beside me, how could I fail?"

"You realize with this fortune coming in, we could be set for life? We could retire and live the good life." As he said this, Zoraiyan reclined in the metal seat, formerly reserved for Vargon's visitor, placing his feet upon the desk.

"Ahh, but there is so much more out there waiting for us to discover it and use it to our advantage." the woman behind Vargon said dreamily.

"Katlian has a point... If anything, I think we should expand our operations. Perhaps even recruit others with similar desires." Vargon said as he began to once again stroke his goatee.

Zoraiyan's feet came off the desk and he arched a brow at the brother and sister pair sitting and standing opposite from him. "What on Faerun would we do with MORE money?"

Vargon answered his companion with a sly grin spreading across his face, his hands forming a steeple in front of his face, "Ahh, but you forget, my friend. Money is power. And power, my dear Zoraiyan, is what makes the world go around."





Unknown Guild © Vargon Shadowstar (Jeremiah Johnson)

Migrate Wizard: 
First Release: 
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