Gremlaw wrenched his blade from the body of the man who he had just killed, unable to wrench his gaze away from the man’s single, astounded eye. Wide with shock and fear, the single orb would haunt Gremlaw’s nightmares for years. The young man sprinted for the door through which the two Lavashian men had left.
He passed the array of alchemy supplies without noticing any of it as his vision remained attuned to see negative space. The room was fairly short and narrow, more of a corridor, as Gremlaw rushed towards the gaping maw of a doorway through which he assumed the two men had left. Pausing and holding his breath, the young man listened for any sign of someone waiting beyond.
Deciding there was no choice, Gremlaw rolled forward into a rubbish strewn alleyway, smoothly rising, spinning and lashing out blindly with his blood covered blade flicking drops of red life up the walls around him. Gremlaw looked left, then right noticing a flap of dark material catch briefly on the rough edge of the warehouse.
Following, Gremlaw found himself in an open marketplace, if it could be called such. Moulded together in the centre, like prisoners huddled in a cell, a group of traders had bravely set up and were valiantly trying to peddle their wares. Bored looking women milled around aimlessly utterly disinterested by everything and everyone around them.
Gremlaw stopped and scanned the square, looking for the two men he sought. It was difficult as his negative vision tried to fight with his conscious attempt to look for something specific. Dark, empty shapes shifted before him, moulding and changing according to the solid frames of the objects which bounded them. Gremlaw noticed many of the dark spaces in the distance shifting and changing rapidly and realise this must be the Lavashians shoving through the crowd.
Gremlaw bolted for the nearest space and picked his pace up to a sprint when several gaps in negative space lined up with each other to create a passage through the crowd. He would catch up with them! What would he do when he did?
His temporary patch of luck ran out at the same time as his adrenaline began to run out. Lactic acid burned his muscles and his lungs felt as if they were on fire. Gremlaw was forced to slow as his body rebelled against the chemicals which it had been forced to use to keep him safe. He reached the opposite edge of the square and leaned heavily against the rough stone wall of a building to peer around the corner. The narrow street was empty with the single exception of an emaciated dog which was half-heartedly searching the piles of rubbish for scraps to eat.
Gremlaw took a deep breath and slid his back down the wall until he was in a squatting position as it hit him.
He had killed a man!
Gremlaw leaned forwards, held his head in his hands and dropped the long dagger which he had murdered someone with. A violent trembling shook his thin body, making his teeth chatter, as a result of the adrenaline withdrawing from his system and the shock he felt at the admission he had just made to himself.
Two consciousnesses seemed to exist within Gremlaw’s head, one was horrified at the act he had committed; the other much more rational.
“I knew I was a thief, but a killer?” The first Gremlaw thought.
“He would have killed me! It was self-defence.” Came the thought of the second.
“I’m a murderer!”
“No, I’m alive!”
The pointless conversation rolled over and over inside Gremlaw’s head until he though he would go insane. He groped for the blade he had dropped, noticing the rusty brown stains of dried blood on his hand as he did so. Painful guilt slammed into Gremlaw and he started to retch.
Not one of the vacant eyed passers-by paid any attention to the blood spattered youth who was violently disgorging his lunch onto the ground.
Gremlaw squatted in his own vomit until the trembling feelings had passed. He stood, muscles aching as if he were a hundred and stumbled off towards… where? Gremlaw had no idea what to do or where to go.
The thought struck him the Lavashians might connect him with Haguana, leaving them both in danger of being exposed. Gremlaw found a public bench and wearily rested his body as he considered his next move.