“I knew you would come to help the mage,” the man known as The Sword of a Thousand Suns said. He stood there in front of Haku, and at total ease. He must have known she wouldn’t move to strike him down if he had his sword still in its scabbard.
“I lament that honor can sometimes be predictable,” Haku said in reply as she revealed her naked katana blade. “But so can dishonor.”
“Dishonor?” he asked, his voice slightly muffled from the bloody mask he wore. “Am I not here—in this street fighting an honorable duel with another sword master?”
“Your methods call into question any honor you may have, swordsman.”
She could tell her refusal to address him by his legendary title rankled at him. Good. Perhaps I can use this against him—put him off balance so that I may have the upper hand.
“Samurai!” he called to the warrior who had escorted her and Lawrence to the tower as he thrust out his wakizashi. The samurai ran forward and took the smaller blade, separating his daishō combination so that he could fight more freely without hindrance.
“Tch!” Haku nosed in annoyance, knowing that by this action, the legendary swordsman was taking no chance in their duel.
“Now you die, White Feather,” he said, pointing a finger at her. “The world will know that I’ve defeated yet another legendary duelist in single combat.”
“Is that all you care about?” Haku snapped, preparing for their fight. “Is such a status really so important to you? What of your master, Hukama? Does he not need you in his endeavors?”
She had asked that last part in frustration, though she didn’t want to remind the man that he could potentially be more useful by tracking down her Ujio. Killing the daimyō, which would effectively end most of the resistance at Hukama’s rear flanks.
“The kami have set forth each man’s destiny…” he said. “This is mine.” He glanced about the roofs of the machiya dwellings stacked high upon one another.
She noticed them too. Ninja—watching the street below, dark thunderclouds above them in the sky bringing ominous tidings.
“Yours?” he asked.
So, not Hukama’s, then…
She narrowed her eyes. “I don’t know.” It was the truth.
“It matters not,” he said calmly, lowering himself into a fighting position as his hand crossed to take hold of his katana hilt. “Now fight.”
The Sword of a Thousand Suns rushed forward to meet The White Feather.
"I’m a businessman. My family has a seat in the Dwarven Merchants Guild. Merchants buy and sell goods. Businessmen buy and sell stores. In my spare time, I manage a spy network. And occasionally, I write books."--Varric Tethras
Wakiagaru is complete.
The Reconnoiters is complete.
More stories on the way.
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