Thursday, 12/5/2250 – By Rebecca Green.
The knife pricked her finger. Held there, the knife duly twisted against her skin. Shadows danced across the floor, thrown about by the waning moon against the windows and the trees blowing in the wind, just outside the hallway where she walked. Gold eyes glinted in the light, and the woman brandishing the weapon walked tall, a clean six foot body with waist length hair pulled into a blonde ponytail. It bounced with every movement, each step confident and leisurely. No one would be around. School had let out hours ago, each of the brats would be hiding away in their houses, cramming in what little studying they could for final exams to come.
None of them would come across her, clad in a leather jacket and tight black leggings. She reached a hand into the jacket, pulling out a small black orb, bringing it to her nose and taking a whiff. Smiling, the woman was close to her destination.
She hadn’t thought it would come to this. The plan had been to scare the little brat, run her out of the job and keep her from sticking her nose where it didn’t belong. And, four years ago, it had worked. Vander had quit as expected at the simple threats. It hadn’t been that hard, really, to find her family- snap a couple of pictures, take a couple notes on their daily activities and send it to the agent. Vander – Silverfang – had handed in her resignation in a matter of hours.
That should have been the end of it, though the woman would be lying if she said she hadn’t been disappointed. To fight, to sink the very knife that twisted against her finger, into the soft flesh of the woman, would be a challenge she was more than willing to take up. The famous Silverfang. Ha. She’d bent like a feather, she hadn’t any sort of the ferocity and fire as the rumors said, a reputation that deterred every other contender from taking the hit. Only she would take it up. Perhaps crazy, but she was confident that in a matter of minutes, the woman would be dead under the hilt of the dagger encrusted with an emerald film. She’d stolen it off a previous hit, years ago.
Rhea wouldn’t generally be there so late. It wasn’t as if she gave out much homework, being primarily a defense professor the only homework was to get some exercise and sometimes she ordered the sloppy students to come by during a free period to get some extra practice. It was Blackhall’s fault, really. If he hadn’t caused her to fall twenty feet and break her leg, she wouldn’t have needed to take time off and subject her students to essays and paperwork.
Paperwork and essays she had to grade, if you could imagine the horror.
She growled in annoyance as her pen grazed the next paper, each word annoying her because it was all wrong. The scenario they presented to take a fortified city would result in nothing but the death of their entire army. The assignment had been to conquer, not to fail so horrifically. If they had listened, they would have known better by using the mistake of fire against dwarven dragons. Amateur mistake.
Her head pounded from the headache she was getting, Rhea was sure that she was getting some sort of bad cold from the weather. Earlier she’d felt nauseous and now had a pounding headache that caused her to snap several times at students. Hours later, she was still stuck struggling to focus on what she read. Rhea released a long breath, raising one hand to rub her temples, groaning wordlessly to herself.
It was in the reflection of her pen that she saw movement and Rhea took in a sharp breath. The figure lunged forward and Rhea moved instinctively. Kicking the desk, her chair teetered backwards and she rolled with it, sideways and pushing to her feet. Planning to try and stand, to pull a hidden knife from her boot, but arms were around her neck a moment later, dragging her backwards and the tip of a dagger against her throat. Rhea yelled out, her hand flying up to grab the wrist, fighting to keep it away, her head twisting and biting down hard on flesh.
She was met with a hiss and she dropped all her weight down, holding tight to the arms around her neck and a moment later, her assailant was rolling with it, moving over the redhead and coming to her feet once more. Rhea huffed- the woman was adapting to her maneuvers quickly. An assassin sent to kill her and an experienced one at that. Certainly more adept than most she’d met- it wasn’t often Rhea encountered anyone who had a prayer at dragging her down.
The woman was slicing out her dagger once more and Rhea felt an eruption of pain in her thigh. Damn it, the same leg that had been broken and she groaned in pain, the dagger twisted up from where the woman knelt on the ground. An arm hooked around Rhea’s leg and jerked. Rhea was brought down, her head roughly hitting the ground and eyes swimming. She kicked, grabbing the hand with the knife and twisting sharply, hearing a distinctive pop and the knife clattered to the ground. She swept it up, but a moment later the woman was on top of her, bringing up her unwounded hand and slamming it down against Rhea’s jaw. Rhea grunted, turning her head sharply to avoid the next blow, and her hand shoved the knife into the blonde’s side.
Her other found hair, pulling sharply on the ponytail and the assailant’s head was jerked back, but she managed to punch again, two times even as Rhea twisted the knife, blood covering her hand. But the woman seemed hardly to care and Rhea pressed harder, twisting them both until she was on top, shouting as she did, “Who sent you?”
The woman didn’t reply, instead reaching both hands up, ignoring the pain in her broken fingers in favor of grasping Rhea’s face, two fingers finding their way to Rhea’s eyes and Rhea jerked backward, giving the woman the opportunity to turn them over. “Who sent you?” Rhea demanded again as the two grappled on the floor. All at once, the woman kicked hard and Rhea was forced off, skidding across the floor and her back hitting the frame of her desk.
“Well that hardly matters, doesn’t it?” A high, mocking voice. “I’m going to kill you either way.”
“Have at it then.” Rhea snapped, gasping on the floor as she forced herself back to her feet, the blonde and her circling for a moment. The blonde was holding an orb- black- but not a grenade.
The blonde crossed her arms in an X in front of her, the orb facing out and after a click Rhea was blinded by a bright white light, though she tried to cover her eyes. She blinked desperately, only for the woman to lunge once more and Rhea barely managed to grab her wrists, bending backward over the desk as they fought for strength. The knife getting closer and closer to Rhea’s throat and her eyes continued to blink rapidly, struggling to get a picture of the woman. Blonde, golden eyes that told Rhea without a doubt that she, too, was a werewolf. One of the wolves who delighted in their killing instincts, who embraced the wolf and had that forever golden hue.
“This all you got, Silverfang?” The woman continued in that high voice, grating on Rhea’s ear and she found it difficult to focus on, what with the knife going for her throat and all. “I expected so much more than a little brat like you, I should have killed you before instead of sending you that little note.”
“That was you?” Rhea gasped, abruptly shoving her hands to the side, dragging the woman’s dagger with her. Her legs swung up, using the desk to hold herself, and wrapped around the woman’s neck. Pulling herself up, she held the woman’s head as the blonde staggered backward. The orb fell to the ground, flashing against their struggle. Rhea threw her body weight forward, the woman teetering until she fell onto her back. A new knife – how many did she have? – stabbing into Rhea’s arm and she yelled out, rolling with the momentum and onto her feet.
She didn’t think, she didn’t want to run- but the pain in her leg and in her arm spoke volumes. The woman had gotten two hits and Rhea hadn’t met someone who could do that. Sloppy. Rhea reached the door, jerking it open and fleeing down the hallway, leaving behind the flashing room, but tailed closely by the woman.
Rhea twisted around a corner, using the edge to propel herself forward, and she near ran straight into the librarian holding two books.
“Rhea-” He began, “I was just headed- I heard-”
“Adrian!” Rhea interrupted, “Get out of here! Now!” She spun around, facing the corner. She couldn’t let the woman get near him, she had to stand in between them. A moment after, the blonde woman rounded the corner, brandishing what was definitely a grenade now in her left hand, a dagger in the right.
Behind Rhea, Adrian dropped the two books he was holding.
Rhea was prepared to fight, but instead the blonde woman halted in her tracks, standing at the end of the hallway and staring at something just past Rhea. The redhead’s eyes flashed to follow, and the woman was staring right at Adrian in shock.
It was Adrian who spoke first, “V-Veronica?”
All at once, the blonde grinned widely. She didn’t speak, instead raising the dagger and throwing it with deadly accuracy towards the man. Rhea jerked, lunging for the knife and her fingers curled around the blade. Sharp edges cut into her palm as she dropped it down, grasping the hilt with her other hand and looking back up, prepared to chase after her, but in the moment of distraction, Veronica had whipped around and disappeared down the hall. Rhea took a step to follow her, but Adrian grabbed her arm.
“She stabbed you-” He was appalled, horrified. “You’re bleeding Rhea- God she stabbed you what was she doing here-”
“Trying to kill me.” Rhea heaved, only now truly feeling the pain in her leg as she came down from the high of the fight. Stumbling once, she grabbed Adrian’s arm for balance. “She was sent by someone- an assassin-”
“She’s an assassin-” Adrian began, but instead he reached for the hand gripping his arm and turned it over. “Your hand, the cut looks deep.” Nevermind the stab wounds against her shoulder and thigh. Rhea shook her head.
“It’s not bad- Ourani should still be around. We need to tell Rodney- that woman is on campus still.”
Adrian paled, “She hates me, she’s after you because of me- this is my fault-”
Rhea’s eyes narrowed. “It’s not, she’s been after me since before I started working here. My previous job caught some unwanted attention. But how the hell do you know her?”
There was silence and Adrian gaped wordlessly at her before finally managing to speak. “She’s my sister.”