The Dragon Lady’s Dark Side, Part 2
Location: Headmistress’ Quarters, Townsend Tower - Atlanta, Georgia
Timeline: The Year of the Apocalypse - 23 January 2012
“Mountain Man, we’ve got a problem,” OG’s voice came over the phone. There was a worried tone to the digital being’s voice, which was normally only reserved for the utmost of emergencies.
“OG?” Dyami said with a curious tone in his voice, “Are you really calling me on the phone? I did not know you could do that. I guess we do learn something new every day.”
OG actually gave a digital sounding sigh. “What do you mean you didn’t know I could use a phone? Anyway, that’s not important right now. It’s Wyrmwood. She’s seriously considering doing something foolhardy and reckless. She’s not listening to me, so I thought that maybe she’d listen to you.”
“Foolhardy and reckless you say? How is this different? Honestly, you have known her for more than ten years, surely you know that is how she normally operates.” The Shaman laughed, then said, “However, if you are calling me, of all people, it must be pretty reckless. What is going on?”
“Yeah, yeah. But this is different, Mountain Man,” OG said, giving an exasperated sigh. “She’s planning on going after Vincent Zajic. You know, the mob boss that sent his goons after the new kids? The goons that almost killed Fractal and Rook? She’s gone all...broody and...assassin-ish. She says she’s going to bring him down since no one else will.”
Dyami pondered her words for a moment, “Broody huh? I have not seen her that way in a long time. Let me get this straight your calling me worried about a thirteen hundred year old dragon that is going to eat a mob boss. I do not really see how it could go wrong. But you have got me thinking about her all dark and broody. That has my interest.” Dyami laughed to himself, then said, “Do you really think she needs my help?”
“Not you, too,” OG grumbled. “She’s not some Hand assassin anymore! She’s the headmistress of an exclusive academy! I was hoping that you could talk some sense into her, since she’s decided not to listen to me!”
“Ok, calm down, no need to yell,” Dyami hushed the angry synthetic being. “Listen, I will come talk to her. Maybe I can take care of the problem for her, it is more up my alley anyway.” The Indian man was quiet for a moment before continuing, “When is she planning to do this?”
“I have no idea,” OG said, her tone dropping. “She won’t talk to me about it. As a matter of fact, she got downright surly with me over the whole thing. The only reason that I even know that she’s still in the Tower is because I’m tracking her nano.”
Dyami looked around and called one of the younger children over to him. “I need you to bring a message to Nina for me. Tell her that I had to go to the Tower again, and I will return as soon as I can.” Much to the chagrin of the child, he then mussed her hair and shooed her on her way saying, “Hurry now I am counting on you.” Turning his attention back to the phone he said, “I will be there as soon as possible. Keep her busy if you have to OG.” As usual he hung up with no warning, having said all he needed to.
It was cold, but she barely noticed it, so lost in her contemplations and preparations was she. Syn sat on the large deck that hung high above Atlanta, her legs folded under her, her hands moving over all of her old trade implements on the low table in front of her, almost lovingly. She rarely brought such things out of the sacred room that she kept them in. It was a shrine to her past, and those that had moved on before her. To those innocent lives that she’d shattered. A constant reminder of the life that she’d left behind so long ago to seek a better path.
Still, she couldn’t shake the feeling that such skills were necessary, once again. Sure, Wyrmwood could storm the mob boss’ compound, make short work of his men, and the structures, but OG was right. To do such a thing would likely bring scrutiny on the Tower. If she bothered to leave anyone alive, which was in doubt at that particular moment.
Talon watched as Syn, lost deep in thought, turned each deadly piece over in her hands. Hopping a bit closer on the rail the tiny bird made no noise other than the tiny scratches of its claw on the hard metal guardrail. Sometimes it was better to be unnoticed while contemplating what his next move was.
Without turning from her own contemplations, Syn asked, “How long do you intend to spy on me in that form, old friend?”
“Peep, peep...” Talon cleared his throat, an unnatural sound coming from a sparrow. “Sometimes I forget just how hard it is to sneak up on you, oldest friend.” He flew over to the table and landed on the cushion opposite her, quickly morphing back into his normal form.
“Well, I am a dragon. And a ninja,” Syn said with a chuckle as Dyami took his mortal form. “Let me guess. A little birdie told you that something was amiss?”
Pulling a bottle of plum wine and two glasses from his ever-present totem bag, he responded while setting the glasses on the table and showing her the ancient looking bottle, “Birds are quite talkative if you know when to listen.”
“Something tells me that the ringing of the phone makes that a bit easier to divine,” Syn said, finally looking up at the native man. Her red-reptilian eyes were dark and distant as she looked the bottle over, and a bit of a smile touched her lips. “Always so thoughtful. How in the world did you manage to get a hold of a five hundred year old bottle of plum wine? Or do I really want to know?”
“The same way I always do; from the dream realm. You would be amazed the things an archaeologist dreams about.” Talon chuckled and poured them each a glass. Handing one to Syn the Shaman continued, “Are you sure that all this is necessary?” he said waving his hand over the array of tools spread out on the table.
Syn took the glass, and nodded her head. “He needs to be stopped. Jon tried, in his own way, but it didn’t stick. To anyone with any kind of scruples, they’d know he needs to be stopped. But in all of the research that I’ve done, no one is even trying. Though, that’s likely because those that have, have wound up dead, or missing, under suspicious circumstances. This man tried to kill his own flesh and blood. He nearly succeeded in killing Beth and Jon. And he’s still walking free. Someone has to do something.”
“There are other options, Uktena.” Talon took a drink, savoring the sweet, aromatic blend. “I could turn over the info you have to my contacts in the U.S. Marshal’s office. It would take some time but there is a good chance that they would find something to put him away on.”
After taking her own small sip of the wine that her friend had brought, Syn sighed and shook her head. “And put more people at risk than necessary? People that cross Vincent Zajic don’t tend to come out of it alive. I’d rather do it, and leave the body count only including him and his men, rather than any of your contacts. Or anyone else, for that matter.” She paused and gave Dyami a mischievous, nearly evil grin, asking, “What’s the matter, Talon? Are you doubting my skills?”
“Hey now, you of all people should know that I trust your skills.” Talon said defensively, “ I am just making sure that you need to get involved.” Laughing he added, “Besides if you are going to do this, do you think I'm going to let you have all the fun?”
The diminutive dragon lady sighed and closed her eyes. “Don’t get me wrong, my friend. I don’t think of this as fun; you know that I dread becoming what I once was. I just think it’s necessary for the greater good, and for the safety of those that count on me to protect them.”
Talon looked at his oldest friend seriously, “Given what you just said, do you think that there is a chance you will fall to your old ways? If so, I will do this for you.” Dyami took another drink and refilled his glass.