Chapter III: Loud and Clear
Chapter III: Loud and Clear
Enwin woke on her back and to the sound of a waterfall. She opened her heavy lids and looked up to a familiar face of insanely blue eyes and blonde hair.
“Brer?” she asked dreamlike, like it couldn’t be true.
“Enwin,” he answered, taking her small hand in his and sitting beside her on the bed.
“Where am I?” she asked closing her eyes, she had a splitting headache on the right side of her head.
“The Cistern,” he answered, “Sleep,” he whispered.
“Yes, home of the Thieves Guild.”
Her eyes flew open, her head shot off the pillow so fast she hit Brer in the nose with her forehead.
“Ah! Enwin!” he said pinching his bleeding nose.
“We made it…” she said grabbing his other hand in both of hers, “We made it!”
He began laughing despite his injury, golden light filled his hands, waves of light flowed up to his head and the blood dried up and stopped flowing, and then he embraced her in both arms.
For the first time in three years, Enwin felt safe. For the first time in three years, Brer could stop worrying about Enwin, because she was there with him.
“You never change,” he whispered.
Enwin pulled away examining her numerous bandages, “Who did this?”
“I did,” he said reaching for a pink bottle, “Only one in the guild who knows Restoration.”
“So you really did learn magic? Strange for a Nord, eh?”
He smirked. Always had he been strange, always had he not been conventional.
“I spent a year at the College of Winterhold, Spell Tomes are so hard to come by, I left and came a joined the Guild a year ago.”
“Just like you planned.”
Brer was always planning things; he had his life completely mapped out, apparently by 21 he’s going to be a Master Illusionist.
“Here,” he handed her the pink bottle.
“What is this?”
“A healing potion, help with the infection.”
She drank, and gagged, it tasted what Enwin imagined a Hagraven to taste like, shit.
Just as Enwin had finished, Brynjolf came over from a desk on the other side of the Cistern.
“You okay lass? The test was to just get past those lowlifes at the entrance then cross the bridge and then past the woman, but you past the test with full marks because you passed those maniacs down there.”
“Next time make sure the bridge is down.”
Brynjolf looked awkwardly around, then a woman in Guild armour came over.
“Brer, Vex is looking for you, she had trouble at Goldenglow and needs patching up.”
“All right Sapphire, Enwin I have to go, I’ll see you later.”
Enwin was sad, he had to go so soon, but at least she would see him later.
“Can you stand lass? Mercer would like to see you,” said Brynjolf.
Enwin stood on shaky legs and Brynjolf supported her into the middle of the Cistern. Enwin realised she was in new clothes.
“So this is the infamous Enwin is it? I’m Mercer Frey, your Guild Master. Now to be part of the Guild you have to abide by a code,” said a middle-aged Nord man with shaggy blonde-grey hair and a short beard.
“And what might that code be?” asked Enwin, her head throbbing at the sound of his booming voice.
“No killing while on a Job, the test was to sneak past those lowlifes not massacre them, we’re not the Dark Brotherhood.”
That stung Enwin, she had no choice but to kill them and Mercer Frey knew it.
“I shall abide by the code,” she said.
“Good, now Brynjolf what do you say to really testing this girls skill in stealth, hmm?”
“Yes, I think that she should – wait, you don’t mean Goldenglow? Not even Vex could get in.” said Brynjolf.
“Yes I mean Goldenglow, seeing as Vex couldn’t get in I was going to send Brer, but seeing as his little friend has pooped up I see no harm in her going too.”
“But she is injured, she could not make it,” Brynjolf spoke with an air of concern.
“I’m sending Brer in a month, she should be well by then, see to it that in a week she has had some form of training, a lot of the Guild’s hopes lies on that cursed bee-farm. Besides, if we send in two agents it will give the message loud and clear to Aringoth and other Black-Briar competitors not to mess with Maven, it’ll make the message loud and clear. Also, if one dies in there the other can carry on with the task given.”
Mercer Frey had spoken to Enwin for five minutes, and for some reason, she didn’t trust that man at all.
A month later Enwin’s injuries had all healed, leaving no scars thanks to Brer’s help. She knew a weak Restoration spell that could heal minor cuts and bruises, how to use a bow and dagger acceptably, and how to easily open locks without loosing a single lock-pick.
Together, she and Brer were swimming around the outskirts of Goldenglow Estate, waiting for the opportunity to climb onto the roof and shoot flaming arrows and three beehives. The opportunity came and they grabbed it.
Quickly they climbed up onto the Estate’s borders, the Mercenary was had just patrolled the back of the house and was now returning to the front of the manor. They ducked into the cover of darkness, at the back of the house and hurriedly began to help each other climb to the roof; the Mercenary would be back in ten minutes if our observations were correct.
They made it, and Enwin nocked her bow with a special arrow that was flammable at the end and Brer lit it. Slowly she drew the bow aiming at a beehive at least a hundred metre away, good thing she had a powerful bow. She exhaled and released, in seconds the hive was in flames, Mercenaries from all directions came to see where the flames were coming from and franticly filling buckets from the river that surrounded the Estate. Enwin and Brer repeated the shots at two other hives. Three had burned; the first part of the job was over. Let the second begin.
Most of the Mercenaries were focusing on getting the fires put out before they spread to the other hives but three had stayed guarding the door to the house. Brer held out both hands and sent red light at the three of them, just as planned they began attacking each other, one was left and Enwin shot him. They both jumped down and Enwin began picking the lock.
“Come on!” she hissed as her third lock-pick broke; now she only had two left. She never broke lock-picks!
“Search them for a key!” she said as she broke her fourth one, and began using her last one, which she broke.
To their luck two of them did have a key, they both took one each and Brer opened the door. They snuck in quietly.
“We’re leaving wet footprints!” whispered Brer, “Why did we not think of that? Take off your boots!”
They took off their boots and tied them to their belts with spare leather strips they found in the cupboard by the door. They proceeded down the wooden hall.
“Did you hear that commotion outside?” asked a Mercenary to another, “What’s going on I wonder?”
“Just ignore it, it’s our job to stay inside and make sure no one gets in, go guard the door.”
Brer and Enwin slipped into an open room as the man walked past. So far there was two Mercenaries inside the house, but Vex had said there were at least eight and that Aringoth had probably doubled the guard, the bastard of a Wood Elf.
They snuck around the corner, luckily the Mercenary was looking out the window overlooking the honey farm, watching as the beehives burned.
Brer tapped Enwin’s shoulder and pointed to the direction of the door then to himself, then at her to the man at the window, she understood. You shoot him, I’ll kill the other, she strung her hunting bow as Brer went to shoot ice spike the other. They both fell dead with a spike or arrow to their heads.
Both of them proceeded to the next floor to retrieve the keys to the safe seeing as they had no lock picks, which was not part of the plan. Upstairs was there was a table with several septims and a coin purse and they stole them, in the cupboards they found two pairs of fine boots, which they donned and preceded through the house running into four Mercenaries that they killed stealthily. This usually wasn’t they Guilds way, but they had been given instructions to kill anyone in their way, even Aringoth if the need arrived.
They came to Aringoth’s bedroom at last, the Elf lived on his own with not family. They stopped crouching stealthily and walked into the room prepared for a fight or heated discussion.
“What have I told you Mercenaries about coming into this room?” roared Aringoth, stooping over a desk and not bothering to check if who entered really was a Mercenary. The Elf wasn’t just stupid because he double cross Maven Black-Briar, but was also stupid enough to trust a bunch of Mercenaries to be able to keep his land safe. “I’m guessing not to enter? I can’t be sure seeing as I am no Mercenary,” said Brer drawing his elven dagger.
Aringoth turned, eyes wide, and stood.
“How did you get in here!?”
“Now, now Aringoth this can go two ways, you hand over they keys to your basement and safe and we shall leave you alone, if not we shall pry them from your dead hands.”
“You’re bluffing, that’s not the way the Guild works, I don’t believe you, you’re not getting my keys if I can help it!”
He attacked, really it was pitiful, untrained and just downright crazy, with an iron sword he was down in a second. Brer stood over him, a glowing sword in his hands, he had just produced it out of thin air.
“I didn’t know you could do that!” said Enwin.
“Shhh, grab the keys,” Brer looked behind her, there was a key hanging on a hook, “You’ve got to be kidding me!” he said grabbing the key with a paper labelled ‘basement’.
“He had another in his pocket, I’m guessing that’s for the safe,” said Enwin feeling around his pockets again for some septims. Standing up from his fallen body she looked around for a chest or strongbox, and to her delight there was a gold statue of a bee on the bedside table.
“Would you look at that!” she said in wonder, “That could get us a few hundred septims that would!”
“Take it then, but it looks heavy.”
Enwin did take it, and it was heavy, five kilograms at least. Putting it in a sack she slung it over her shoulder along with several gems she found.
They went downstairs again and to the basement. Their plan was to go to raid the safe, then use the sewers to escape, the same sewers Vex entered in. In the basement they ran into some Mercenaries, they snuck past two, and stole some more animal skins in a storage room. Continuing down the hall, Brer saw that there was a massive oil spill. Instructing Enwin to stand back he threw a fireball at the pool of oil, sending sparks flying as it caught alight. They heard two mangled screams of two Mercenaries being burned to death, the other two from the front part of the basement came rushing to investigate what had happened.
“What was that?” one asked the other as they entered the place with animal skins.
“I swear I heard something,” the other said drawing his great sword, Brer used the same spell that he used on the three Mercenaries at the front door, with one left, we struck and they were down in seconds. Brer and Enwin both had a couple of bruises and Brer had a cut on his arm, but that was the good thing about stealthily killing, it minimised your injuries.
Sneaking down towards where they heard the screaming from, they were greeted by a horrific of sight two charred bodies and the stench of burned hair and flesh. Enwin looked up at Brer realising he had done this. He didn’t even look sickened but proceeded onwards towards the safe. Enwin felt sick, and couldn’t tear her eyes away from the two bodies. Brer grabbed her wrist and dragged her around the corner to where the safe was.
Enwin was unresponsive to Brer’s commands to hand him the key to the safe and he had to get the key out of her pocket for her. Enwin felt sick, it was bad enough shooting someone but burning them alive just seemed inhumane to her, and she was shocked that Brer had done it.
He opened the safe, took the gold and a gem, and began reading some paper that was stored in the safe.
“Oh no,” he said.
“What?” asked Enwin.
“Aringoth has sold Goldenglow to someone, but I can’t tell who because its signed with some strange symbol.”
“What does that mean then?”
“I don’t know…” Brer mumbled then pocketed the loot and they went to the trapdoor down to the sewers. They fought or snuck their way through skeevers and frostbite spiders, when they got into the fresh air again (which they were more than happy to do) they immediately swam back to the Riften docks and went back through the Guild by the secret entrance in the graveyard.