This is a smaller excerpt of my novel than the previous ones. In this part of chapter 3, the main character is resting after a days trading in the northern city as well as accidentally getting one of the supporting characters put on death row. The wrong people have been angered…
NB: Bad Language in the last line
A hearty cod stew with herb dumplings, fish stock gravy, and a side of bread and potato hit the spot in Mikos’s stomach just like the wonders of magic-based pain relief.
He patted his belly and leaned back with a small glass half full of some brown spirit-based drink. He had taken a corner table in the lounge of the tavern away from the rest of the crowds and savoured his evening meal. He sipped the drink and tried to relax.
The lounge was a beautifully laid out series of tables, chairs and light fixtures that always gleamed with a hearty emotion, sending rays of soft orange light dancing through the room like a bunch of well-wishing fairies. Being lit by small magical devices, they fluctuated and would change their shades of colour dependant on the time of day.
An elderly human couple sat a few cubicles down from him trying to recapture the romance by feeding each other forkfuls of their dinners, whispering and giggling at stories. Mikos didn’t know whether to feel amused, understanding or sickened. He looked around again. Not many people were in the lounge this night.
A reptilian was manning the bar and vigorously polishing a stubborn set of decanter glasses with a tatty rag. He couldn’t tell whether the reptile was male or female as they all looked the same; the only way of telling was by a method most people refused to do – an examination of one of the lower orifices.
As he continued his thoughtful gazing, Mikos finished off his aperitif and sat back. He preferred the solitude in the evenings rather than the crowds of inns, pubs and some low-key taverns in the city. The nightlife in Donnol was known for its offers on alcohol, usually reduced prices at certain times of the year, and was therefore a typically violent setting with only the toughest and most experienced of people surviving it on a regular basis. He, however, was not one to risk it even though he knew he could look after himself.
Suddenly a sharp gust of wind blew through the room as the door was opened from outside. A darkened figure dressed in a long brown hooded cape stepped in, the sound of their boots clopping on the wooden floor. The cape flowed in the breeze as the person shut the door behind them. A small, flattened nose poked out a short distance from within the hooded refuge, a compliment of white fur beneath its moistened textures. A set of narrow blue eyes scanned the room and stopped at the one corner.
Mikos had certainly noticed the mysterious entrance this figure had made and was even more wary as it moved in his direction.
‘Is there anything you want, stranger?’ he asked, barely looking up at the shadowy presence. There was a soft yet deepened purring.
‘Mikos Valdera?’ the hood asked in a husky voice.
He looked up more at the person, now seeing the variety of coloured hairs on the face and the few sharp whiskers around the nose. ‘A feline… what do you want sir?’
‘There was an incident earlier in the marketplace where a young girl was captured thanks to your apprehension of her.’
‘I was merely in the wrong place at the right time is all.’
The feline flexed his narrow shoulders. ‘Nonetheless, the captain of the Donnol guard requests your presence.’
Mikos laughed softly. ‘So that’s how you know my name… looked it up on the official lists.’
‘Indeed we did.’
He stood up sluggishly and faced the feline. ‘And what, pray tell, does the captain of the guard want me for?’ he asked before rubbing his head.
‘He has not only his personal thanks, but a small gift for you. Don’t ask me what it is because I don’t know; I am only the messenger.’
‘Well I was going to settle down with a good book I bought earlier,’ said Mikos with a reluctant stare.
The cat scoffed and chuckled to himself. ‘The captain is not a man to be refused.’
‘Is that a threat or a warning?’
‘It is a matter of fact, Mr Valdera.’
Mikos sighed and angled his eyes to the floor. ‘Very well then, lead the way.’
‘Oh, I’m sorry, but I have other messages to deliver before the moons reach their peak tonight. I’m sure you know the way… just head back to the central market ward and follow the main road north. You can’t miss it.’ With that the feline bowed and ventured back into the night, leaving Mikos somewhat irritated at the lack of an escort.
‘Typical,’ he grunted before picking up his jacket. ‘Do it yourself Mikos… go over there Mikos… three bags fucking full Mikos.’
Feedback welcome! 😀