Author's Note: Greetings, my fellow writers-to-be. This is my first fanfic on this site, and any reviews would be greatly appreciated. I have read many of your fics and have found them much to my liking. I hope that I can find my place among you. Any personal messages would be eagerly read and gladly replied to.

Thank you for choosing this little piece I've been working on to enjoy.

Disclaimer: I don't own anything in this fic; it all belongs to Mr. Greenwood and Mr. Salvatore.

Now, without any further ado, let us leave behind the cruel weight of our mundane reality and journey to the faraway world of Abeir-Toril in the city of Baldur's Gate, Faerûn, where a poor, plighted soul is about to meet its end.

A Road to be Walked Chapter One Soulless Blade

Puffs of icy breath exploded out of Mishlie Corber's mouth as he sprinted down the dark, deserted back alleyways of Baldur's Gate. A shadow detached itself from a darkened corner and slowly, methodically made its pursuit, its dark cloak flapping eerily, momentarily catching on the long, cruelly designed sword sheath hanging from its belt. The moonlight seemed to slide off it, disgusted with such a sight of death incarnate.

Mishlie Corber was a merchant of no small standing. Indeed, he had many enemies amongst his peers, which had prompted him to hire a virtual small army of personal bodyguards, without whom he never left his mansion.

His protectors, or rather, what was left of them, were sprawled out in tattered heaps at the end of the alley, their blood making the already icy pavement even more slippery than what was the norm.

Mr. Corber, not in overly good shape, gasped and wheezed as he rushed by the unforgiving brick walls that clustered so claustrophobically about him. The steamy, transparent cloud of his breath was becoming visibly more ragged in the chilly winter night air.

The shadow increased its speed seemingly without breaking stride. Had one been able to study the apparition's face closely (most assuredly not a wise action,) he or she may have noted a small smile creeping up the ghastly features. There was nowhere for the fat merchant to run; the alley came to a halt at a dead end.

Mishlie skidded to a stop, not believing his misfortune. A solid stone wall towered before him; no openings presented themselves. He whirled around to run back down the alley, perhaps to find a side-entrance he had missed before, and found the tip of an evil, red-bladed sword an inch from his nose.

The merchant squealed, a sound reminiscent to that of a swine, and backed up against the wall. The horrible sword, red as freshly spilled blood, advanced with him, seeming to shimmer in liquid anticipation. Mishlie felt something wet and warm trickling down his leg.

"P-Please!" he bawled to the dark form holding the wicked weapon, "I can get it back; I swear it!"

"That is what you told me a week ago," snarled the shadow haughtily. "I am afraid that you are out of time, Lord Glutton. You should have taken me more seriously."

"No! No, I'll get it. I just need more time."

"You have not tried to get it. I've been watching you closely, more closely than you can imagine. You, in your disgusting so-called superiority, sent not the first of tracers to locate the item. You have failed me. Now you will discover the price of your failure."

Mishlie broke down; sliding down to his knees into the hard, cold bricks that made up the pavement. "Please," he begged, "don't stick me with that thing."

The shadow considered him for a moment, and slipped the sword back in its sheath. "No, I suppose not."

Mishlie snatched up the hem of the dark man's robe and kissed it. "Thank you, sir. Thank you." He screamed when the cold metal of a horribly cursed dagger plunged into his back.

"But I will stick you with this," added Artemis Entreri, shuddering with pleasure as the merchant's life force flowed through the soulless blade and into his body. He wrenched the dagger out of the unfortunate man and made his way back to the inn where Jarlaxle was waiting.