Barrett wasn’t sure what kind of poison had been on the daggers. The only thing he was certain about was that it was one of those he’d built up an immunity to thanks to the Hundred Poisons Pill. Of course, that didn’t mean there was no effect, but there wasn’t enough poison to cause him any trouble. He wondered if the assassin had noticed that… or if they thought it was sufficient poison to kill him. Or maybe there was something else to it.
There had been other attackers as well. Several first tier and two second tier guards were dead. Of those at third tier, one- a woman- was lingering between life and death. Barrett helped carry her inside, where there was more light, and brought her to the nearest bed. A female doctor arrived only a few moments after Barrett and immediately began looking over the injured guard. “Her wounds aren’t too bad… poison?” she asked.
Barrett held out the dagger he had taken from the assassin he fought, “It’s likely the same as this one.” He hadn’t had a good chance to look at the dagger before that moment. It was wooden. Ironwood, probably. Even so, if he’d known that he would have fought differently.
“Hmm…” the doctor looked closely at the dagger, specifically the parts that weren’t covered in Barrett’s blood. “With that color…” The doctor pulled a few things from her bag and started to administer them to the patient.
Another guard came into the room. “Captain Kaipo requests the presence of those involved in the recent attack… except those that need treatment, of course.” There were a few other guards who had been injured or poisoned slightly but had fared well enough to continue walking around. Barrett himself was perfectly fine. The cuts he had received would heal in a day or two without any sort of treatment.
As Barrett stepped out into the hallway, he saw Nilima. “Hey, Barrett. Help me carry something!”
“Sure. I’m going to Captain Kaipo though.”
“That’s where this is going,” Nilima nodded.
“Alright then. Let’s go.”
Barrett followed Nilima to her room, where there was a body. “Carry that,” she said.
Barrett might have told her to carry it herself… but it was too much trouble. He just slung the body over his shoulder. Not that he expected differently, but the body definitely wasn’t of a warrior. It was far too light. No heavy armor, and no dense muscles. Nilima should have been able to carry it, no matter how skinny she looked, but it would certainly be faster if Barrett did it.
A minute later Barrett dumped the body on the floor in front of Captain Kaipo. “You killed one?” Captain Kaipo asked.
Barrett shook his head, “I just injured one. She killed this one,” Barrett pointed to Nilima.
Captain Kaipo nodded, “Excellent. I would have preferred things went better for us, but at least they didn’t get away unscathed. These assassins clearly weren’t part of the Bachon clan… but they were most likely working with them.” Captain Kaipo held his hands behind his back, “They were clearly targeting our third tier cultivators, likely with the intent of weakening our combat prowess. This will likely be followed up by an attack by the Bachon clan’s forces. Before then, we will be investigating their origins and how they managed to slip past our watch.” He turned toward Barrett and Nilima, “Any insights?”
Barrett scratched his chin, “They’re likely from the Silver Blade… which could pose a problem.”
Captain Kaipo raised a silvery eyebrow, “What makes you think they’re Silver Blade… and why would that be a problem beyond their presence?”
“Their equipment is similar, and at least one of their poisons is the same… which might not mean anything. However, I recognized the fighting style. It wasn’t just that they had two daggers, but the way they used them. The second part…”
“Is that they have a grudge against you.” Captain Kaipo nodded.
“How did you know?”
“It wasn’t small news. We do keep track of what happens in Stredo, after all.” Captain Kaipo paced back and forth a few times. “Regardless of the grudge, they were clearly targeting us. Your presence just means if they recognized you we have even more reason to track them down and kill them.”
“It was dark, so they might not have…” Barrett shook his head, “But it’s hard to say. I could go after them, if you have a way to track them.”
“We do have some ways but…” Captain Kaipo shook his head. “It’s better that you remain here. If they did not yet recognize you, it’s best to try to keep it that way. Besides, you don’t really have much in the way of… espionage skills. Regardless, they have been hired or otherwise chosen to attack us… so we cannot just leave them be.”
Nilima kicked the body, “This one doesn’t have any sort of message tokens or anything. If they did, it could be traced back to the Silver Blade and get them in significant trouble, since actual assassination work is illegal. They might have something stored somewhere nearby though.”
Captain Kaipo nodded, “We’ll catch them at the earliest opportunity. A team is already forming up in the main house. They should be able to catch them before they can reach the Bachon clan or any other sort of stronghold. That is likely the assassin’s current goal, unless they are planning to be part of another attack here in the immediate future. Speaking of which, we must prepare for that. Previously we had assumed it would just be the Bachon clan, and we would be able to find their forces coming miles away, if not a few days in advance. The number of third tier assassins already sent is likely the limit of their finances, even if they had other deals in place… but that doesn’t mean those very same assassins couldn’t return with their main forces. We will fight them here, but this time we will be ready for their tricks.”