Disclaimer: Not mine, I'm just playing with it for a bit and I will put it back when I'm done.

Brief note: Set after "That Curious Sword"


Artemis Entreri shut the door to his sunlit room and carefully checked all the locks, the window, the closet and under the bed. Satisfied that his drow traveling companion was not hiding somewhere and had not slipped any spying devices into his room, the assassin carefully pulled out a familiar worn leather wrapped kit from his travel pack.

It had been years since he had felt both safe enough to use it and inspired enough to have something besides a dead Do'Urden flitting about his mind. All of that destructive obsession was gone now and all of the stress of the past months in Calimport was left behind. Entreri was freer than he had been in years, but he still felt a pang of loss from his swift retreat from Calimport. Perhaps his old hobby would help take his mind off it.

As had been his habit so long ago, there was a clean, prepared piece of unmarked wood wrapped in with the small blades. The blades were as clean and pristine as he remembered, but the wood was teak this time around. The assassin could not recall where and when he had picked up the wood, since usually he preferred something harder, like ebony or mahogany. He weighed the block of wood in his hand and decided it did not matter. He made sure the little penknife was still keen and carefully began to carve out the woodblock.

The image Entreri had in mind was not as simple as a landscape and took longer than he thought. He wanted to make sure every cut was perfect for his subjects, a captured moment in time. The sky was starting to grow dark when he finally finished. The assassin did not have time to savor his work since the sound of his door's lock clicking prompted him to hastily hide the finished woodblock and carving knives under the bed pillow.

The door opened and Jarlaxle stood in the hallway with a perplexed look on his dark face. "Are you all right?" the drow asked, concerned.

"I'm fine," Entreri said curtly and in an effort to distract Jarlaxle, strode out of the room without waiting for his partner to comment further. He felt fairly certain that Jarlaxle had only enough time to do a cursory glance at the room before he lost the assassin.

Entreri was halfway down the inn's staircase down when he heard the dark elf's light footsteps catching up to him. They walked in silence as they left the inn to go get some dinner and figure out what jobs to take now. He slowly let out a relieved breath and started to feel a little less grim for successfully guarding his secret when Jarlaxle said mildly, "You should send her a copy."

Entreri stopped in his tracks and stared at the drow, "What?"

"I said you should send Dwavhel a copy," Jarlaxle repeated in the same even tone, "She'd probably like hearing from you."

The assassin felt his jaw starting to drop and said, shocked, "You saw it."

"Artemis, I watched you carve it," the drow said calmly. As Entreri stared at him, Jarlaxle continued, "Well, not all of it. Just the last part."

Entreri felt his shock start to give way to hot anger, "How?"

"There's a little gap under your door and I have a small mirror," Jarlaxle said earnestly, "I heard some little scraping noises coming from your room and got curious. Really, my friend, it's a very good woodcut of you and Dwavhel playing sava in her office."

The assassin felt his initial rage melting away, leaving a feeling of unease in its wake, "It's chess."

"Whatever," the dark elf waved the correction away and said reassuringly, "I knew someone who liked to practice card tricks for fun. I won't tell anyone. I was starting to worry about you, you know."

"Stuff it," Entreri shot back, but his heart was not in the banter as they continued to a tavern. Perhaps he would send Dwavhel an anonymous print, one friend to another.

Perhaps one day Artemis Entreri would carve another one with different friend as the subject.


Author's note: Just a little more fluffy goodness for grins and giggles. Thanks to Linndechir for making the request .