The Assassin
Author: Phoenix Heart

Chapter 4
Chapter III

Chapter III

I looked over the crowd of people and I saw man, woman, child, and elderly.

“Assassin, look at all of these people. These are the people who have fled to this hell under the city because of the Holy Church’s oppression! They live in fear and starvation and many die a day, all because they spoke what was on their mind!” Ali started yelling at me.

“My God,” I muttered, dropping to my knees.

“No, God didn’t do this. You psychopathic people did this in your diluted version of His will!” Ali snapped.

     She suddenly drew a dagger and pointed the tip against my throat.

“I should cut out your jugular vein and send you to Hell where you belong,” Ali growled.

     Suddenly I fell back and kicked her feet out from under her. She threw the dagger up into the air and I caught it and placed the sharp edge against her throat.

“If you want to cut out my throat, you should’ve done it right there,” I said.

     I could feel her heart rate accelerate and some of the other refugees looked over at what was going on.

“I however won’t hesitate to kill you,” I said.

“Then why aren’t you doing it?” Ali asked me.

“Because you saved my life,” I said, pulling the knife away from her throat and pushing her forward.

     Ali turned and faced me. I handed her the dagger and she took it.

“Why were the other assassins trying to kill you?” she asked me.

“An assassin named Rook killed my wife,” I said.

“He is the same bastard that killed my brother, father, and mother,” Ali said.

“Then I guess we have something in common,” I said.

“Ali, who is this man!?” a man with a missing eye asked her aggressively.

     He stormed over and got into Ali’s face. I almost intervened, but I chose to stand back.

“He was going to be killed by the assassins and I intervened,” Ali said, unperturbed to this man getting into her face.

“I overheard that he is an assassin!” the man snapped.

“Was,” I muttered.

“What is your name, assassin?” the man asked me.

“Ricardo, don’t,” Ali said, trying to divert his attention back over to her, but he pushed her away, knocking her to the ground.

“Your name, now!” Ricardo snapped at me.

     I aimed my crossbow at his face and glared at the man.

“I suggest you do not lay another hand on her ever again, understand me now, and I will not have to pull this trigger later on in life,” I threatened the man.

     Suddenly a few other men pulled their own crossbows and aimed them at me.

I suggest you put down that crossbow before I allow those men to fire their crossbows,” Ricardo said, smiling at me.

     I sighed and put my crossbow away.

“My name is Ramón,” I said.

     Ricardo looked down at my Gauntlet and his eyes widened.

“You, bastard! You’re the one who killed my parents!” Ricardo yelled, punching me in the face.

     I ignored that hit and actually chuckled.

“You’re gonna have to clarify that a bit more, I’ve killed a lot of people,” I said.

     Ricardo punched me again in the face, but I just spat blood onto his face.

“Ricardo, stop this!” Ali shouted, stepping between us.

“Ali, this man killed my parents and is the sole reason I live in this hell!” Ricardo shouted.

“Wait was your mother the prostitute whose throat I slit?” I asked Ricardo.

“Kill this bastard!” Ricardo screamed at the men holding the crossbows.

“Stand down!” Ali snapped immediately.

     The men listened to her and lowered their weapons.

“And if you ever touch me again, if you ever try to question my leadership again, I will kill you myself,” Ali said, poking Ricardo on the chest.

     He bit his lower lip and turned and walked away. Ali then turned to me.

“Come with me,” she said.

     I didn’t make any response, but followed her away from the mistrust being emitted from every other person in the colony. Ali led me past a curtain that hung over a doorway.

“This is my quarters, I invite you to stay here for as long as you wish,” Ali said to me.

“That won’t be for long, as soon as I’m rested up, I’m going back up and I’m going to kill every single person in affiliation to the Holy Church,” I said, sitting down on chair.

“Assassin… Ramón, we all have a grudge against the Church, and we all want to see it burn to the ground…,” Ali started in.

“What are you getting at?” I asked her.

“Listen, we’ve been planning to stage a revolt against the Church for months, but they’ve mostly been militant attacks on only a handful of their less-skilled assassins and we’ve been unable to stage a full-on assault,” Ali said.

“And now you think you can because of me,” I said.

“Yes, listen I know it sounds preposterous, but I honestly believe that we can achieve our goals,” Ali said.

“It will never work,” I muttered.

“Why?” Ali asked me.

“The Holy Church is a fortress, its walls are surrounded by archers, and the courtyard has soldiers. In addition to the assassins, the Holy Church’s “army” ranges in the numbers of a thousand,” I said.

“The numbers don’t matter, we have the element of surprise due to the fact that they will not be expecting us to actually attack them, with the secret catacombs running directly under the Cathedral, and with a little bit of science,” Ali said.

“What kind of science?” I asked her.

     Ali smiled at my question.

 

We stood on a ledge and watched a man wearing thick goggles plant a strange tube with a candle wick sticking out one end.

“It’s called gunpowder, it’s extremely flammable. It is held within the container which is made out of porcelain. When the lit wick hits the gunpowder, shards of porcelain will fly off in every direction and imbed themselves in everything from walls to flesh,” Ali explained.

     I watched as the man lit the wick with a torch and ran for the cover of a large, concrete block. The fire burned through the wick and hit the gunpowder, causing the porcelain container to burst apart in the resulting explosion.

     I held in my amazement even as a shard of the container imbedded itself to the wall and inch from my head.

“Interesting, but I do not believe one would do sufficient damage,” I muttered.

“We have hundreds and we’ve already noted that the soil holding up the courtyard is loose enough for the bombs to be planted and lit,” Ali said.

“Alright, let’s say these explosives fail to do anything sufficient and we’re forced to fight the Royal Guard, then what?” I asked of her.

“Well… I was hoping you could train us,” Ali said.

“I do not believe anyone here would be so easily moved to be trained by an assassin,” I said.

“They will if I tell them,” Ali said, smiling at me.

 

 

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