Enter the Snowflake's lair... Circulation: 179,262,770 Issue: 440 | 23rd day of Eating, Y12
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Tracking Down a Bloodline: Part One


by medit92

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“Jump! I’m right behind you!” the red Kyrii shouted to the blond haired Usul in front of him. Garin jumped across the space between the two building roofs. Jacques landed behind him and stopped to catch his breath.

     “Are they still after us?” Garin asked. Jacques looked behind him at the guards who were following them.

     “Yep. And they look as mad as ever!”

     “Then I suggest we keep running!!” Garin grabbed his Kyrii mate by the arm and pulled him along. They jumped off of the roof onto an awning below and then landed on the street and bolted. Garin nearly dropped the bag of jewelry he was carrying, but kept a firm grip on it. He and Jacques skidded to a halt as some guards ran across the street ahead of them. They ducked behind a wall as they passed. Garin and Jacques looked at each other.

     “All of this for a few jewels?” Jacques asked.

     “We robbed the baron’s wife, genius!” Garin snapped quietly. “And don’t worry, if we can make it to the docks, and aboard the Black Pawkeet, we’re home free.”

     “IF, Garin,” Jacques reminded him. Shouts could be heard coming closer to them. “Let’s go!” They ran down the street, shoving past people and dodging carts. A musket ball whizzed past Garin’s head. He ducked.

     “Keep your head down, Jacques!” Garin shouted.

     “No argument here!” Jacques leapt over a barrel. Garin stopped, drew his Maractite dagger and cut a rope that held a great number of barrels in a cart. The barrels went rolling into the oncoming guards. Garin laughed and high-fived Jacques as they ran.

      *****

     They arrived aboard the Black Pawkeet another hour later after running from at least a hundred guards and gave orders to cast off. Garin and some other members of his crew rummaged through the bag of jewels he had been carrying and the one Jacques had. They divided equally amongst themselves and examined their jewels like a prospector examining gold. Garin held a large ruby studded pendant up to the sunlight and watched it sparkle like a star. He smiled and pocketed the pendant in his vest as he walked over to the stern of the ship. Jacques walked over to him.

     “Well, that was an adventure,” he said.

     “Aye. Didn’t I tell you we’d make it?” Garin joked. Jacques laughed, but then his gaze trailed off to a large vessel in the distance. It was massive, and had a haunting look to it. Jacques recognized it on first sight.

     “Garin, you do realize what ship that is?” he asked. Garin looked at the ship and went pale.

     “Oh, that’s not good!” He raced over to the helm and looked through his telescope at the nearing vessel entering the cove. Garin gave a bit of a start. It was the Revenge all right, but she had just sailed by without even noticing the Pawkeet. He took the telescope away from his eye.

     “Looks like they’re not interested in us,” he said.

     “Huh?” asked Jacques. “But Scarblade never misses a chance to get at the Black Pawkeet!”

     “Aye. So the question is... what could be more important than that?” Garin and Jacques looked at each other. Garin slipped on his seaweed necklace and Jacques drank a green liquid from a small bottle concealed in his vest, then they both dove over the side of the Black Pawkeet into the water below.

      *****

     Garin peered through the bushes at Scarblade and his men. They were standing outside of an old house, with a single light in the window. Garin and Jacques exchanged glances, then slowly snuck around the house as Scarblade and his men broke the door down. An old Pirate Kougra was waiting for them, cutlass drawn. He swung it at the first of Scarblade’s men who entered the house, fighting back with as much strength as he could muster. Garin opened a window to the house and he and Jacques watched what was going on. Two of Scarblade’s men grabbed the old Kougra by the arms, forced them behind him and held him still as Scarblade entered the room. He smirked evilly at the Kougra.

     “Well, nice of you to invite us into your home so graciously, Glint,” he said sarcastically. The Kougra just growled. “Now, let’s get to the point. You have information I need, and I want you to give it to me.” Scarblade drew his cutlass.

     Garin grimaced, but then grinned as a quick plan came into his mind. Jacques saw his friend’s usual scheming grin and smiled.

     “What are you planning, mate?” he asked.

     “I’ve got an idea. You with me?”

     “You bet!”

     “Good, then listen up.”

     The Kougra struggled as Scarblade put his cutlass into the flames inside the fireplace. The cutlass grew red hot and Scarblade pulled it out. He grinned cruelly and walked over to the Kougra.

     Suddenly, there was a loud ‘CRASH!’ as Garin and Jacques broke through the hallway window upstairs. They jumped over the balcony rail, grabbed onto a chandelier and swung into members of Scarblade’s crew, knocking them off of the old man. Garin drew his Maractite dagger and Jacques drew two cutlasses at his belt, and they stood in front of the old man.

     “All of you, facing one old man. Aren’t you ashamed of yourselves?” Garin wisecracked. Scarblade growled angrily, but then grinned.

     “Young Captain Garin. What brings you here?” he asked.

     “Following you,” Garin said. “Now back off!”

     “Not a chance!” Scarblade raised his cutlass, which was still red hot.

     “Oh boy,” Garin muttered. He held up his dagger to block the strike, and sparks flew into the air. Jacques swung his cutlasses at some more of Scarblade’s crew. One of them tried to grab him, but the Kougra grabbed his cutlass and locked blades with him.

     Scarblade shoved Garin into the wall, but Garin jumped aside as Scarblade’s cutlass went into the wall and missed him. Garin bumped into someone. He whirled around, only to find himself looking at the Kougra, who stared at Garin for about a minute, then swung his cutlass at another pirate. Garin blocked another of Scarblade’s strikes.

     Jacques tore a shred of cloth from a curtain and ran up behind Scarblade and leapt onto his back, swinging the cloth over his eyes. Scarblade let out a yelp of shock.

     “Sorry, Scarblade, but now we’re playing Blind man’s Bluff!” Jacques shouted. He nodded at Garin, who hit Scarblade in the stomach hard, then kicked him in the chin. Scarblade threw Jacques off of him, then put his fingers into his mouth and whistled to his men, and they retreated. Scarblade followed and shouted over his shoulder, “I’ll be back, Glint! You still have what I want!!” Then he left.

     Garin growled a curse and sheathed his dagger. Jacques wiped sweat from his brow and looked at the Kougra, who was clutching his arm.

     “Are you-” Jacques asked, looking at the arm.

     “It’s all right; it’s not deep,” said the Kougra. He looked at Garin. “Thank you, lads. If it hadn’t been for you two, he’d have gotten what he wanted.”

     “What did he want? And who are you anyway?” asked Garin. The Kougra smiled.

     “Name’s Glint.” He held out his hand. Garin shook it. “As for what Scarblade wanted, information.”

     “For what? Location to a stash of loot?” asked Jacques.

     “Something like that.” Glint sat down on a chair in the room. Jacques took the shred of cloth he used to blindfold Scarblade and bandaged Glint’s wound. “He wanted to know how to find the Heir’s Treasure.” Jacques and Garin froze and exchanged glances.

     “The treasure Captain King left for his son?” Garin asked. Glint nodded.

     “King and the boy’s mother mind you,” he said. “Locked away somewhere that only King, and his crew knew about.”

     “Well, what makes Scarblade think you know where it is? King and his crew have been dead for years,” said Jacques.

     “Unless...” Garin’s eyes widened, looking at Glint. “You?”

     “I was his first mate. I’m all that’s left of our crew.” Garin and Jacques looked at each other.

     “So... why does Scarblade want the treasure? Only King’s heir can open the treasure’s location. Right?”

     “Aye. King was clever, he... Hold on, me hearties, someone’s outside,” said Glint. Garin drew his dagger and crept over to the window that Glint was looking at, which had been broken open during the struggle. Garin reached quickly through and felt soft fur under his fingers. He grabbed a fistful and pulled the spy through the window and threw him onto the floor.

     “OW!!” the figure cried out. Garin raised his dagger, but then stopped, seeing as he recognized the face.

     “Sam?”

     The blue Kacheek cabin boy smiled weakly.

     “Hello,” he said. Garin sheathed his dagger.

     “What are you doing here?” he asked.

     “You probably should be asking the others that. They’re outside, waiting for me to see if you two were all right,” Sam replied.

     “Oh.” Garin let Sam up. “You can tell them we’re fine.” Sam nodded, then went out the door. Glint looked at Garin and raised an eyebrow. “Sam, our cabin boy.”

     “Ah. And your names are?”

     “I’m Garin, and this is my first mate Jacques,” Garin said. Glint stared at Garin for a moment then smiled and nodded his head.

     “I’ve heard about you and your crew. No wonder Scarblade ran from you so quickly.” Glint stood up and stared into the flames of the fireplace as Garin’s crew walked in.

     “I’ll ask again, why does Scarblade want the Heir’s Treasure?” said Jacques.

     “King’s wife, Rebecca, when she learned about King’s death, fell sick with a broken heart and hardly had the strength to go on living. Shortly before she died, however... she had a son.” Glint glanced at Garin and his voice trailed off. Garin looked at Jacques.

     “So... Scarblade is the heir?” asked Garin.

     “His pirate reputation sure would make it all make sense,” said Jacques, thinking of the many times they had witnessed Scarblade’s brutality. “He wants what’s his.”

     “As I was saying,” said Glint, “Rebecca had a son.”

     “Let me guess,” said Garin. “A Lupe?” Glint looked at Garin.

     “No. Completely different species.” Glint scratched his chin thoughtfully. “He ought to be about... a few years younger than Scarblade, though, I think.” Garin, Jacques, and the whole crew exchanged glances.

     “But if he’s not the same age...” said Jacques.

     “Then Scarblade is not the heir!” Garin said.

     “Bingo. The heir vanished years ago. Where he is now, I don’t know,” Glint said, looking at Garin. Garin looked at Glint and stared at him. Something in his eyes... Garin had seen it many times before in pirates. Garin gave a small glare.

     Glint... was hiding something.

     “You sure you don’t know anything more?” he asked.

     “No. Nothing else,” said Glint, his eyes not leaving the young Usul captain for a minute. “You had better leave. If Scarblade returns, he’ll go for you lads first.”

     “But what about-” Jacques started.

     “Don’t worry. I’ll be fine,” Glint reassured him. “Now go.”

     Jacques and Garin nodded, then left with the crew of the Black Pawkeet. Garin couldn’t shake from his mind what Glint could be hiding from them as he walked through the forest. Glint had taken a strange interest in Garin since he and Jacques arrived and helped him out, but why? Garin couldn’t take it anymore. He stopped.

     “What’s wrong, Garin?” asked Jacques, stopping.

     “I want to go back,” Garin said.

     “Why?”

     “Jacques, Glint’s hiding something. I know it, I saw it in his eyes!” Garin said. “He knows something about the heir that he is not telling us, and I’m going to find out what it is!” Garin turned around and started walking back to Glint’s house.

     “Wait up! I’m coming too!” Jacques ran to catch up with Garin. “And you’ll have to send me back to the ship in a sack to stop me!” Garin smiled.

     “Thanks, pal. Now let’s go.”

      *****

     Glint tightened the cloth on his wound. It was quiet now, but he knew Scarblade could strike at any time, and he would strike hard. But he would not find the treasure. Suddenly, Glint was grabbed on the shoulder from behind and turned around in his chair. A strange blue blade was pointing at his throat, and Garin’s crystal eyes staring into his.

     “Alright, Glint,” Garin growled. “You were lying during our first meeting. I could see it in your eyes! Now what are you hiding?!” Glint just stared for a moment, but then smiled and shook his head.

     “Ye remind me of King. He read people like a map, never backed down from a fight, lacked brutality to a point, and always got to the bottom of things.” Glint chuckled, then stared into Garin’s eyes, showing no fear even though he had a sword at his throat. Garin glared.

     “Enough games!” he said loudly. “There’s something you’re not telling me, now what is it?!”

     Glint’s smile faded. He glanced at both young pirates, then sighed.

     “Very well. There’s no point in hiding it anymore. I’ll tell you.”

To be continued...

 
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