DISCLAIMER: I don't own Oblivion, I wish I did because it is awesome... but I don't.
A/N: Just a little random idea that I cooked up while playing through the Dark Brotherhood storyline. Lemme know what you think at the bottom of the page.
A/N 2: This story has been edited and revamped. Mostly because I was bored XD. Let me know what you think!
Teinaava prided himself on his work. His blades moved through the dark like a soft breeze, finding each mark without fail. He had served his beloved Mother well for nearly three decades now, and his work had never failed to please Her. He scaled the side of the stone building with ease, the tips of his fingers easily finding purchase in the sheer rock.
His goal tonight was inside a large private room kept at the Tiber Septim Hotel in the Imperial City. This would have been a simple task, if the ideal evening to carry out this contract hadn't fallen on the very day the captain of the guard's wife had born her first son. As a result nearly fourscore of the guardsman had appeared and gathered at the Hotel, intent on celebrating the new parents. And Teinaava had no intention of holding out hope that they were all too wine soaked to recognize his presence. He would be able to leave easily enough, but maneuvering around that many guards in order to gain access to the stairs and the upper floor would be far more trouble than climbing the smooth outer wall of the building. Plus, he did enjoy a hearty challenge.
Ocheeva had come to him with a contract a tenday before, citing the task to be best suited for his own skills. "Our Mother even suggested this contract be given to you." His twin's face had born a strange smile, which the younger Argonian passed off as Ocheeva simply being in an odd mood. The task she had outlined was fairly simple in design but years of experience told him that it would be far more difficult that made seem. He was to find and kill an Imperial guardsman, who had been discovered by his wife to be unfaithful. The information she had provided was not the worst ever given, however it was not nearly up to par with what their normal informants could offer. The wife knew her soon to be late husband kept a small suit at the Tiber Septim Hotel, which she had surmised was used by him to entertain his mistresses. However beyond that, and the mostly likely times he would be there she couldn't offer much about the mistress. His best bet would be to simply wait and catch the pair in the act, killing them both swiftly and leaving the city quickly, before the guard was roused and the gates sealed.
Pulling himself up through the open window leading into the hall, the Argonian landing on silent feet and quickly flitted toward the nearest open door and out of sight while he assessed his surroundings. The door his target was located behind was slightly ajar and there was no one in sight. He strained his ears, listening for the heavy footsteps of the guardsmen downstairs, but they were all celebrating happily. He took a slow calming breath before sprinting the length of the hall towards the open door. The tip of his tail snaked through the doorway just as he pulled it quietly shut, and turned toward the interior of the room, wrinkling his nose as he did so, as the scent of the guardsman's nightly activities hit his sensitive nose. The whole place reeks of skooma, and the guardsman's rutting. Hopefully the smell of blood will freshen the air in here.
He drew his curved knife slowly, and crept towards the lavish bed where he could see the man curled over on his side in what would be an odd pose for sleeping, though his body was still with slumber. However, as he drew closer, the assassin realized that the man's body was curled around the hilt of a plain steel dagger buried in his gut. It had been a mortal wound, but one that must have taken several painful minutes to succumb to as his ruptured organs disintegrated from his body's juices. Re-sheathing his blades, he knelt beside the bed to inspect the corpse curiously. The knife wasn't anything a lady would carry, he recognized it as a fairly common blade carried by most men in the Guard who were off duty. A weapon of oppertunity.
A glance at the nearby dresser confirmed the man's purse was still resting atop it, not a mugging, which ruled out the thieves guild, as well as any woman hired for the evening. Neither of their guilds allowed for killing on the job, though any of the courtesans would be more than willing to drug a client.
Instinct, matched with years of practice had the Argonian rolling out the way of a blow from behind. He whirled around and snatched his attacker's arm in an iron grip, halting another strike with a silver shortsword, and he noted offhandedly that the blow was awkward, nearly all of the power in the blow coming from the weight of the sword rather than the strength of the attacker's arm. He pulled a knife from his belt and nearly beheaded his attacker but stopped himself as he came face to face with a purple eyed Nord child. She didn't look to be very old, but gauging ages of those without an Argonian face was difficult. She had a lovely round face with high cheekbones and large eyes. Her blond hair was long and matted with blood from her victim, and her clothing was a shredded dress of flimsy material, not meant for anything beyond being torn off with ease.
The assassin could feel the girl's body tremble as he kept his one handed grip on her weapon, but her eyes... Her eyes intrigued him. They were cold and bright as gems, hardened from living a world most children were kept safe from. These were the eyes of a murderer, and the sight of them made his tail twitch with excitement.
Teinaava scratched his jaw thoughtfully as he watched the terrified girl. The contract had been fulfilled, though unexpectedly by a third party. She would be found by Lucien eventually, the assassin could already see the Mother's mark on the girl, a tiny bit of magic the would allow the Speaker to find her wherever she might travel. Killing such a promising potential Sister was pointless, and he was not going to receive payment for doing so, of that he was sure. Best to simply gather her up along with the murder weapon and take their leave of the place before any of the drunks downstairs decided to go exploring.
He reached out a gloved hand and began to pull the girl's hands carefully away from the sword, only to have her vanish suddenly, but his grip tightened around her hand to prevent escape. He had done a similar trick many times himself as a child to escape from his sister and teachers.
The Argonian chuckled to himself as he realized the full truth of the situation. A child born under the Shadow, who had slain her tormentor with his own blade. If this was not a sign from Sithis then he would gladly eat his own tail. It seemed this was the Night Mother's true intentions for him this evening.
"What is your name child?" He asked in his slight hiss of a voice. When she refused to answer he smiled, which looked more like baring his teeth at her. "It is alright, I will not harm you." He waved his fingers towards where he knew her face to be, before slowly allowing them to fade from view as well. "You and I, we are one and the same little one, children of Shadow."
As she slowly faded back into view and stared at him, he noted her jewel-like eyes had widened in amazement, her eyes moving from his invisible hand to her own which was slowlly fading into view as her Power faded. He gently rested his gloved hand on top of her bloody hair, 'What is your name little one?"
"Don't got one." She mumbled, not looking at him. Teinaava frowned as she continued. "Mama's customers all gots different names for us." She glared at her grubby toes, "I hate those names." She spat.
Teinaava nodded slowly in understanding. He could hear the cheers of guardsman two floors down as they changed shifts for the night, it would only be a matter of time before one or more of them discovered the assassin and his tiny companion. "Child, come with me. I can take you far from this place, where you will be safe." He held out his hand, "You will have a home with many others like you. What do you say to that eh?"
The child nodded finally, releasing her grip on the sword which Teinaava caught and stowed back into it's sheath quickly. "Let us find you something warmer than those rags you have on child. Frostfall is a cold month, and the last thing I want is you to freeze to death." He stood and fished through the large chest of drawers and pulled out a plain black linen robe and becked for the girl to come close. He moved towards her and she held still as he pulled the robe over her head. The plain woven belt he tied tightly around her waist, and he carefully tucked her hair underneath the large cowl, pulling it low to conceal her face. It was far, far to large for her, but it would serve to conceal her in the dark as well as offer some protection from the elements until they were out of the city. Removing his own shrouded hood, he unrolled a large cloak from where he had stowed it in his pack and quickly fastened it around his shoulders, covering his armor. The duvat lying on the bed was pulled up over the dead man's body even as Teinaava removed the dagger from his gut and wiped it clean on the sheets before tucking it away.
Turning to the girl, he scooped her up carefully into his arms, "Rest against my should like you are sleeping little one." He told her as he walked out into the hall, one hannd cradling the back of the child's head as though she were asleep. An advantage to being Argonian; none wanted to get too close to an Argonian child, as their skin was very poisonous. The ability faded with time usually, though not until they were nearly full grown. A handy survival skill the lizard people had evolved from living so long in the harsh Black Marsh. It was also very useful when smuggling something, or someone was required. Assuming they were small enough to be disguised as a child. Some Argonians would be intrigued by a parent and child, but prying into private family affairs was considered too be so terribly rude, that many would simply never attempt it.
Threading his way past the celebrating peoples in the basement was simple enough, they were all far too caught up in their own activities to pay much attention to a parent and child attempting a discrete exit. Exactly as Teinaava had hoped. Long years of practice in traveling the streets of the Imperial City allowed him to slip past the guard patrols, and mingling with a few late night travelers headed toward the city gates. The gates came into view quickly and he breathed a small sigh of relief at his success thus far. He waved pleasantly at one of the guards and carefully tugged the hood of the child's robe lower over her face as the tall human strode closer.
"Good evening citizen, can I offer you assistance with you little one there?" The broad smile on his face confirmed the assassins fear that this was a new recruit and probably a stubborn one at that.
"Thank you for the offer friend, but it would be best if you didn't get to close to little Adieeva here. I'm afraid she is still very toxic." He narrowed his eyes thoughtfully at the guardsman's blankly puzzled expression. "You have heard about Argonian young I assume? Their skin secrets a deadly poison, and I would be quite upset should anything happen to such a fine guardsman as yourself do to a misunderstanding." He smiled wickedly to himself as the young Imperial leapt backwards away from Teinaava and his charge with a stuttered farewell.
The Argonian assassin chuckled as he set the girl down carefully so he could lead his horse out from her stable Wynghar flattened her ears as he approached, clearly annoyed at her master's desire to leave a place which allowed her to receive the pampering she felt she more than deserved. "Oh hush you silly beast." He muttered even as he carefully saddled the mare and offered her a small handful of oats. Once the mare was saddled she appeared much more willing to do as her master bid and shifted restlessly.
"We shall get you some better clothing when we reach the next village." He informed the girl as he lifted her onto the Black mare's back, and climbing up behind her. "Hold on to the saddle child, we shall be moving very quickly." She nodded in response as he jabbed his heels into Wynghar's sides, causing her to lunge forward swiftly, hooves pounding against the flagstones of the Imperial Highway. She nearly toppled from her seat, if not for his arms wrapped tightly around her waist, keeping her firmly in place.
The scenery was a blur from the speed of the horse's stride. For a while, the child gaped at the blur of colors as they passed. But after an hour or so, her eyes began to droop, and her exciting breathing evened out, before the girl slumped forward suddenly, having fallen asleep in the arms of the killer who had become her savior.
Such a strange girl. Teinaava thought, Feeling so safe in the arms of an assassin. I think that she is going to do great things for our family. He patted the child's hair softly and urged Wynghar to run harder.