Ugh, what a night. Turned on my computer to write and I had to wait while the longest update I have ever seen for windows 10 sorted itself out. Felt like I was waiting for a game to load on my old Commodore 64… thanks Microsoft!
Regardless, here is the next installment of the Shadow Wolf Sagas.
Diamond Silvermane left the Doxies’s Union in Chaos. Quorum was called and the The Twins were chosen to lead the Union, but it was done with grim faces and nervous glances. We left long after the meeting was finished, but Eiskra was still fuming and Vethri was not feeling talkative.
The Doxies’s Union was a force to be reckoned with in Myrrhn. They controlled all of the prostitution houses in the city. That unity afforded the Union a measure of control that even the Seven Families, The Nightblades, and even the Merchant Houses could not ignore. The Union, in turn, protected its members from the depredations of vicious street pimps, malicious customers, and helped them retire when they wished it. The members paid a tithe to the Union in return for memberships.
That was what made Diamond Silvermane’s parting quip so poisonous. No one likes paying a tithe, and many of the younger members of the guild, who had never faced the uglier sides of the profession questioned the usefulness of The Union. By saying that they would never have to share with “cut-up, old bitches”, Silvermane was attacking The Twins, but also making an age-old appeal to selfish greed. In the North, she would have been met with anger and derision, but this was Myrrhn, where the common dream was wealth.
“We will have to start sanctions,” said Vethri, breaking the silence of our carriage ride.
“Yes,” said Eiskra. “A pox on them all.”
“It would be better if we approached this with cool heads, dear one,” said Vethri. “We will have to let word circulate, let the customers know what is going on before we start.”
I could tell Eiskra wanted to protest. Her facial scars made her look even more ferocious when angry. She nodded though, seeing the sense of it. Sanctioning meant that anyone frequenting an establishment outside the Union would be refused service at one of the Union houses.
“I’d love to know what Lily Gemarkand thinks she is playing at,” said Eiskra. “You’ve met her Ragnar, what is her endgame here?”
“She might even be doing it out of spite. I thought her interest in the guild died with Sapphire. I–“
The carriage ground to a halt. We were still some distance from home. I was tense, but could not sense anything out of the ordinary, only a courier. After a moment, the driver opened a panel and slid a piece of paper through.
“Message. Urgent apparently.”
I sniffed the paper to be sure, then handed it to Vethri who broke the seal and scanned it rapidly.
“To Burning Hill driver,” she said, handing the paper to Eiskra.
“What is it?”
“There’s been a murder, Ragnar.”