Chapter Five  -|| Realism
                      Silent Infinity

After she had had a few drinks and finished her meal, Katrin had headed upstairs to the room Witty had rented. Having spent most of the day sleeping on and off she had awoke, a few hours before dusk, with a minor headache. After procrastinating a bit, she eventually grudgingly got out of bed, found her staff, and headed out into the town square to find a few things.

The sun hung low in the sky, which caused the buildings to cast long shadows onto the ground. Katrin made her way through the street with little trouble, people tended to move aside as she passed. Of course, this only happened in smaller towns and villages. The larger the city happened to be, the more likely it was she would be bumped into, tripped, or cursed at for being in the way. For this reason, and only this reason, did Katrin prefer the smaller towns.

She passed by shops and tables, until she heard the distinct sound of scraping metal as it was sharpened. Here she stopped and debated on pricing to get her daggers sharpened. Leaving them to the smith, she headed out again. This time in search of new clothes and a pair of shoes. The shoes were the more important of the two, after all, she was going to be doing a lot of traveling. Shoes were one of the more important items needed for this. This was also a tricky task, considering she couldnít really see what she was buying and, more often then not, had to take the sellers word on the merchandise. So began several hours of shopping, haggling, and, finally, buying.

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Rein sat and gloomily stared into an oversized fireplace. She was settled in a rather fancy looking chair with a high back and red velvet upholstery. The chairís twin sat beside it, separated only by a small table made of thin iron bars wound together in an overly complicated pattern leading to a glass top.

The room was dark, except for the glow given off by the fireplace. It was a large room and the light didnít begin to touch every corner. It was apparently a library, with bookcases lining the walls and painting hung here and there. Even above the fireplace a few paintings were hung: paintings of people that seemed to resemble Rein.

The gray stone on the walls, ceiling and floor made the room seem all the bleaker. A large dark red rug lay under a desk in the far corner, and seemed almost black in the shadows. Four large windows were carved into the east wall, one of which the desk was under. None had glass in them, but instead had massive, single, wooden shutters that could be swung over them and locked into place from the inside. All of which were currently open, allowing a cool evening breeze to blow through.

Reinís crimson eye reflected the light of the fire in an almost menacing sort of way, while her sapphire one seemed tranquilly calm. It was a faded memory of a story which explained her different eye colors, and the only hint that they did, indeed, belong to the same person was the fact they seemed troubled.

"I wonder.." Rein said with a heavy sigh, brushing a strand of hair from her eyes. Streaks of white flowed through what to used to be only crimson locks, though the white was far from being a sign of old age. "If it is even worth it."

There was movement in the doorway. Bare feet walking silently across the stone floor, Tran stepped into the light. "Mistress?"

"What is it, Tran?" Rein asked dully, not even glancing at the Zhara.

Tranís violet eyes looked worried, Rein very seldom got depressed. This was one of those times where he wasnít sure what to do, and he disliked that greatly. "News about, Sharikyn, Mistress." He spoke in his limited English. Though, having been exposed to it for more then half his life, it was still hard for him to speak the language. He could, however, understand it fully. He held out a piece of parchment with one hand.

"Thank you Tran." Rein took the parchment and made a gesture for him to leave. "It is late, go get some rest."

"Yes, Mistress." He bowed low and spoke with the utmost respect. Without another word, he turned and left the room. Though, he didnít go far. He stopped and sat down beside the wall just outside the doorway. He was worried, he couldnít sleep when he was worried, so he figured he might as well stand , or rather sit, guard.

Rein read through what was written on the parchment. The letters were smeared and written hastily, but she could decipher the important bits with relevant ease. "Heís up NorthÖ scavenging.."

She said bits and pieces out loud as if trying to store them in her mind for later. That was it then. That was all the information she needed. She and Tran would head out the next day and catch him. He had a fairly good price on his head, and she bet she could get good money off him in the slave auction in any case.

The words blurred more in front of her eyes as she started to drift to sleep. Catching herself before her head fell, she sighed again. "Bah.. Exhaustion once again is the victor. If I could overcome sleep then I might have a chance.." Rein mumbled to herself as she stood, and headed for a door at the far side of the room.

Passing through the door and out into a hall she headed a flight of stairs, to her room and to bed. Tran peered around the corner and into the library, before heading to the fireplace and extinguishing the flames. He looked at the door through which Rein had exited and frowned. He said nothing, however, and quickly left the room too, heading to his own with little hope of sleeping.

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Katrin returned to her room once more, her back heavy with a satchel full of goods. Dropping it carelessly on her bed, the springs creaking with the sudden weight, she let her own weight fall into a rather strait backed wooden chair in the hopes of relieving a few of her aching muscles. Shopping, like honest work, was definitely not her thing.

She had managed to find what she had been convinced where a dependable pair of hiking boots, a new set of clothes to travel in, including a shirt, pants, gloves, and a new, light, cloak. She had tested her newly sharpened daggers and had ended up having to pay a boy to retrieve it for her, having not been able to find where it had stuck.

She let her staff lean against the side of the chair, where she'd easilly be able to find it again later. All in all, she had gotten the most out of her money, and still had plenty to spare. Money to spare was always nice, she could go down to the tavern below and have a drink now. She wasnít all that hungry, having eaten a fairly big meal that morning. She was used to eating rarely, and wagered she could last at least another day without really needing to eat. Of course, one did have to keep in mind the less they ate the weaker they were.

She sat there, debating on whether to just drink, or to drink and eat as well. Really, what she was trying to do was forget about the journey ahead of her. There wasnít much to loose on the venture, money was always fleeting and she could get more if she really wanted. Life wasnít all that important either, if she died on the journey, what of it? It wasnít as though her existence was anything dreadfully important. There was, however, quite a lot to gain if things went as they were supposed to. Not riches or fame or glory, but something that seemed much more important, or, at least, it seemed that way to Katrin.

"I wonder where Witty has gotten off to." Katrin spoke aloud to no one but herself. The silence didnít normally bother her, she was, after all, more a loner then most. Though, it seemed her thoughts were unusually, not to mention annoyingly, loud in the quiet of the room.

Standing up abruptly she decided to change into her new things before going down to the tavern. She figured it was probably best not to look like a beggar with so many drunks around, it made her look easy. Not only that but changing clothes and getting a few drinks might make her mind stop wandering to things that werenít on the top of her Ďwant to think aboutí list.

It took her only a few minutes to get changed, and she looked suprisingly nice in her new clothing. Her new shirt was black with short sleeves and a dark blue vest over it. Both seemed to shine rather like silk in the light, which is what Katrin had wanted. It made her look like she had at least a little money. Her pants were also dark blue that matched her vest, and, fitting her loosely, were tied at the waist with a length of black cord. She always bought pants that were a size to big, it made her feel more comfortable and she could move easier in them. Her hiking boots were made of black leather, but didn't look like they'd last to long. She could tell they weren't the best when she slipped them on, she'd had far better in the past.

She rolled up the bottoms of her pants a little, they were about an inch to long for her. She had realized this after stepping on the material and tripping when walking around the room testing out her new boots. She didn't need anything else to trip over, after all, she already had to worry about tripping over anything else that she couldn't see.

After a few minutes, Katrin managed to find her way back to her chair. It took her another minute, but after feeling around for a bit she also found her staff. Standing back up, she made her way back to the bed where her box of daggers lied. Opening it up and sliding several of the ordinary ones into the back of her belt, she put her new, black, cloak on over her shoulders.

She was more then ready for a drink by the time she was done, and headed silently--except for the tapping of her staff on the floor--to the door.

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