For Paige

Chapter 1

The knife struck him hard, sending him right to his knees.

"Well now soldier, you didn't expect another one of us here in the shadows did you?" he whispered.

The Medoran soldier gasped a few times, but he did not cry out in pain. It was to be commended, for the wound was fatal, and the man was as tough as the granite walls around them. He tried to stand but his body was no longer responding to his commands.

"That will teach you to kill one of my men. How dare you meddle in the business of the Mages?"

When he received no answer he twisted the knife hard between the ribs in his back. He didn't do it to demonstrate his savage charm; he just thought that a painless death was meaningless. He was simply showing the man that he deserved more than that. The man jerked violently several times before falling limp to the floor, his face slamming into the cold stone with a sickening smack.

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