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   Chapter 13 The Wizard

The Slayer By Lady Lilium Characters: 12138

Updated: 2018-07-13 12:04

'So' Sumaey began as they wandered leisurely through the woodland a short time later, 'how do we find a wizard?'

Waltz hummed thoughtfully to himself, staring up at the branches above and tapping his chin as he pondered. 'Well…' he began, 'to find something….we need to know a little about it in order to know where to find it.'

Sumaey slowed to a stop, turning towards him.

'So?' she raised an eyebrow. 'What do you know about wizards?'

'If they are anything like witches' Waltz spoke slowly, thinking out loud, 'then I perhaps know enough to make it possible to find one.'


'There a very few of them' Waltz continued, 'that much I know.'

Sumaey leant back against a tree, folding her arms as she regarded him.

'Wizards…' he mused, '…witches…there are certain places where they like to hang out.'

Sumaey raised an eyebrow. 'Hang out?'

'Witches and wizards are very powerful' Waltz went on, '…but they were born that way, were born with all of their magic, and instinctively have the ability to use it to their fullest extent without even practicing. Unlike adventurers like myself who have to spend years learning to master the ability, and still have to rely on crystals to do so, and still only know a fraction of magic in comparison to them.'

'That must suck' Sumaey said off-handidly.

Waltz narrowed his eyes, barely hearing Sumaey's words. 'Witches and wizards…their magic lives within their very bodies.'


'The only non witch or wizard who is able to use magic so freely is….' He sighed, falling silent.

'Who?' Sumaey prompted, her curiosity piqued suddenly.

'The strongest guild recognised in this kingdom' Waltz said straightening. 'There are just three members, all human…or at least…that's what they were originally, I don't think even they know what they have become now. They had almost god-like powers, they're practically indestructible and invincible and immortal…all at the same time.'

Sumaey turned away. 'Wow' she said. 'Impressive.' She turned back to him. 'So how does that help us find a wizard?'

'The point I was eventually getting to' Waltz said, 'is that witches and wizards, despite being so powerful, rarely do their own work. They are smart, always planning and hatching clever little schemes. Some say they even control the king and queen of this kingdom….but that is just speculation and rumour…still………I wouldn't be surprised…'

'So?' Sumaey said moodily now, getting weary that it was taking so long to get to his point. 'Where are you going with this?'

Waltz blinked slowly, frowning to himself.

'Witches and wizards are very clever, but they live in the shadows.' He paused. 'They are hard to find.'

Sumaey was growing ever more irritated.


'The best place we might find one…'




Waltz fell silent.

Sumaey huffed moodily, unfolding her arms and straightening up.

'You don't know do you.'

It wasn't a question.

'I have a few ideas of where to start looking' Waltz objected defensively.

'So…' Sumaey groaned.

Waltz turned, pointing in a random direction in the woods.

'That way!' he declared. 'Quickly! As fast as you can!'

The next few weeks were an adventure to say the least. The pair travelled practically non-stop in that time, going from one place to another as they searched for a wizard, any wizard. For several days they hung around in a shady bar where questionable mercenaries were hired by questionable rich people for questionable work. Here Sumaey and Waltz sat in a corner watching the entire room as humans, beasts and a blend of both passed through the bar. Waltz had resorted to stealing to see them both decently fed and mostly decently sheltered in the nights and bad weathers. And so far Sumaey had not been forced to sleep in a single tree since that time Waltz left her before……so far.

'How will you know when you see a wizard?' Sumaey asked Waltz at one point.

'I will know' Waltz answered shortly back. 'I can sense their presence….I've spend so much time in the company of the witch who owns me…I can sense her kind anywhere.'

'So you've meet other witches and wizards in the past?'

The edges of Waltz's eyes twitched slightly as he gazed about him. 'Oh yes' he said. 'More in my time than others have.'

They travelled from shady bar to shady bar until they had exhausted their options of shady bars. Then for some reason Waltz decided to traverse the highest mountain in the kingdom, reaching the peak in the dead of night and standing there gazing all around him in several directions, shielding his eyes from the wind and lightly falling snow as the moon shone brightly above them. A short distance away further down the slope, Sumaey watched him, hugging herself against the cold.

She had no idea what he was looking for, but whatever it was he didn't find it, and they returned back to lower ground where it was warmer.

After that they went to a library, it was the largest in the kingdom, but not situated in a town or city like one might have expected, instead it was out on the open plains beside only a few roads which were at best only fairly busy most of the time. The library was an archive of historical documents and spells and fairy tales, it was a large building built over a wide area, with several levels.

'Wizards like to read' Waltz told Sumaey unhelpfully as they sat at one of the large tables in one of the many large rooms, surrounded by huge shelves that reached all the way to the high ceilings.

'How are you supposed to reach the books on top?' Sumaey wondered aloud, ignoring Waltz.

'Oh' Waltz said. 'The most forbidden and secret and classified books are kept on top. Only people with strong magic can reach them.'

'Hu' Sumaey said, leaning forward with her chin resting on a palm. 'I'd like to see that…I wonder what's up there.'

'Don't know' Waltz said. 'I've never seen the books up there, can't even see the spines to read them.' He grinned to himself. 'One day' he promised, 'one day I will be s

trong enough in my magic to reach them. Then I can read them to my heart's content and learn even more.'

He gazed down at the book before him, a fairy tale about a mermaid who had fallen in love with an angel.

'This is a very well known tale' Waltz said off-handidly, 'my parents used to read it to me, when I was young.'

'A baby Waltz' Sumaey spoke distractedly. 'I wonder what you were like.'

'I'm afraid not much has changed.'

Sitting atop one of the bookshelves, his head nearly brushing the ceiling, was a figure.

He smiled down at them slyly, amused by their behaviour.

'At this point do you honestly think we will find what we're looking for?' Sumaey groaned. She did not have a book in front of her like Waltz did, instead sat at the table opposite, simply watching him as he read.

'Hu?' Waltz glanced up. 'Of course we'll find what we're looking for…eventually….we just have to be patient. Trust me, it will be worth the wait. You never know' he winked up at her, 'when we meet the wizard, he might help you regain your memory.'

Sumaey stared at him. Her expression did not change, but Waltz could tell by the way she froze, that she too was anxious to find this wizard, despite acting like she didn't care. In the time they had spent together, Waltz was getting used to her quirks and was learning to read her moods.

Above them atop the bookshelf, the figure cocked his head in interest as he listened.

'Do you still not remember anything?' Waltz asked her. 'Anything at all?'

'No' Sumaey answered quietly, '…nothing.'

The figure above them smiled. 'I hear you are searching for a wizard' he declared loudly.

Waltz and Sumaey both tensed, staring up in shock at the figure above them.

'Is that a wizard?' Sumaey asked Waltz tentatively.

'No' Waltz answered quietly. 'He isn't.'

She glanced at him. 'You're sure?'

'Yes I'm sure' he snapped.

They glanced back up at him. The figure grinned widely, a mature figure still in his prime. He slid off the bookshelf, falling slowly to the floor, his long dark cloak waved gently in his magic around him as he descended. His feet touched the floor gently and he straightened, regarding the pair before him as they sat at the table, staring dumbstruck at him.

'Such magic' Waltz uttered. 'I've never seen the like…'

The man turned to him, staring at him with wise eyes.

'You' he said speaking slowly.

'Me?' Waltz repeated uncertainly.

The man narrowed his eyes, drawing in a slow breath as he fixated on Waltz.

'I smell a witch on you, but the smell is faint.'

Waltz stared back in shock as the man, using superior senses collected information about him.

'You must be a slave to her' the stranger continued. 'What an unfortunate position to be in.'

Waltz blinked in disbelief, unable to find words to speak.

'And you…' the figure went on turning to Sumaey then, 'I find you very strange indeed.'

'Strange how?' she answered flatly.

The figure grinned suddenly.

'My name is Mallard' he said, placing a hand upon his chest and bowing to them. 'I am a servant to a wizard.'

'Mallard?' Sumaey said.

'Wizard!' Waltz declared.

'Isn't a mallard a kind of duck?'

'Yes' Mallard said with a smile, turning to her. 'It was a nickname that stuck I'm afraid. My master who taught me much often said in my early days that I was as clumsy as a mallard.'

'They are rather clumsy' Sumaey grinned.

'Stop talking about ducks!' Waltz called over them. 'You said you were the servant of a wizard?' he addressed Mallard.

'Servant, apprentice, housekeeper…whatever you want to call me.'

'Can you take us to your master?' Waltz said hastily. 'Please, it's really important.'

Mallard turned to him, regarding him with a sceptical gaze.

'First' he said, 'you must prove that you are worthy to be in my master's presence.'

'Okay' Waltz said slowly.

'How do we do that?' Sumaey asked.

'You will find out' Mallard answered. 'But first you have to be sure that you want to meet him. You can't change your mind once you accept. Proving yourself to be worthy to meet my master will be a big inconvenience to you, and you couldn't go back easily let's say.'

Waltz and Sumaey exchanged a glance.

'We accept' Waltz said heartily as beside him Sumaey said 'hold on shouldn't we talk about this first?' but his voice overrode hers.

'Very well' Mallard bowed. 'Rise and I will show you the way.'

Sumaey and Waltz both did so automatically, doing so without realising it. Something suddenly compelled them to obey, some subtle spell perhaps that the man had placed on them. They turned behind them to see a great house sitting in the shadows of a mountain, all around them the wilderness grew, great knarled trees with heavy thorns, amongst which grew beautiful flowers of the kind Waltz had not seen before, and above, Waltz caught a glimpse of a wyvern flying swiftly overhead.

'Where are we?' Sumaey asked. 'I thought we were in the library.'

'You were' Mallard replied. 'I teleported you here with magic.'

'I never noticed….' Sumaey breathed.

'That's the point' Mallard smiled. 'I talked and made you talk in return to keep you distracted.'

'That's still incredible' Waltz said turning to him. 'We should have noticed something like that, shouldn't we?'

Mallard only grinned.

'So how do we prove ourselves?' Sumaey asked.

Mallard raised his head to the house before them.

'If you can reach the door' he said, 'then you are worthy.'

'Oh come on' Waltz said frowning and crossing his arms. 'This is going to be a lot harder than it sounds I just know it.'

Beside him, Waltz could tell from her expression that Sumaey was thinking the same.

Waltz glanced around suddenly, realizing with not too much surprise, that Mallard had disappeared.

'Should have known' Waltz sighed. 'Come on' he beaconed Sumaey to follow him. 'Let's see what surprises are in store for us.'

She nodded tentatively, before making her way slowly after him.

They moved closer to the house.

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