A dark figure ran around a corner, cape fluttering in the light evening breeze. Four guardsmen where in pursuit, their dark blue uniforms with golden buttons glistering in the occasional light from an electric lantern. Their sergeant had one hand on his sword while the others had muskets at the ready.
‘Fire’ shouted the sergeant, but the hunted character threw itself around the corner just as a salve of musket bullets smacked into the facing brick wall, leaving the dust hanging in the gloom from a distant light.
‘Fix bayonets! That mage killed a Lord of the Assembly! I will not have him get away!’ the officer shouted at his men and then led them in pursuit around the corner.
The dark pathway soon twisted again and they continued, not taking any notice of the shadow as it moved behind them. With calm steps the figure left the alleys and walked out onto the main street. It lowered its mantle hood before stepping into the light of the lanterns and produced a fine cane from the darkness of the cloak.
He led his men in a quick jog until they caught up with the man, who paid them no attention. As they closed he felt doubt – disturbing the wrong man, especially at this time, could have serious repercussions. But there had been something…
‘Excuse me, sir,” he said to the figure as he and his men slowed down.
The man turned around, but instead of a face the sergeant found himself looking at a black leather mask, covering most of the face but the mouth. And the mouth was smiling.