Episode 4: The Wine of Wrath - part 4
Hurst dropped to his knees clutching his throat, looking out into the night through the broken window. The assassin was gone, and from Hurst's cry for help house guards, servants, Darcey and her family, Eckert and Gregore were already on the scene.
Hurst was attended to and left to rest in his room, where he pondered the nature of his dagger and the curious runes upon it. Gregore joined the house guard as patrols were increased and men and dogs were sent to try and track the assassin. Darcey was tasked with looking after her youngest brother, the groom, Vyhn. Eckert choose to do some investigating. It turned out that the assassin was more than likely the suspected servant, who was of course now missing. Eckert then took this as a sign to follow up the conflict of information and suspicions linked to the head of the household, Madam Rosaline.
Eckert has begun to learn to use a new gift from Morrow, and was now able to detect lies, something useful for detecting clues to this conspiracy. Madam Rosaline prepared some tea for them, given the time of night, and over the course of the questioning, while Eckert was no closer to confirming his suspicions, he grew very tired, but then it was late at night.
The next day the troupe was up early for breakfast and once refreshed and dressed in their formal garb, they prepared for the gradual arrival of nobles from around Voxsauny, and then the arrival of the bride herself. They party was almost in full swing. Macaroons in all their gaudy pastel colours, wine, fruits, flowers, cakes of all forms. There was more food than people to eat it. Lavish drapes featuring the Dimiani coat of arms were hung from the building.
Eventually the carriage and the escort of Dragovych guardsmen arrived to much cheering and trumpets. The guards stood to attention and the bride, Kateryna, dismounted the carriage, dressed in a regal purple, festooned with pearls and a golden tiara. The house servants carried into the house the numerous gifts and dowry, and the Dimiani family welcomed their soon to be new addition to the house. Darcey thought her a little snooty, but Darcey was something of a woman of the world.
As the wedding party prepared for the wedding itself, Eckert and Hurst took the time to look over the dowry gifts. There were all manner of things. Furniture, books, chests of gems, paintings, a music box, a collection of Oswinne Muir's plays.
In the courtyard as people were talking and conversing with the party from Umbrey, Hurst realized something was wrong, a stern looking man, a captain of the Umbrey guard, marched up to him. The captain accused him of stealing his family pocket watch. Hurst protested his innocence and handed the watch back, but the man was not happy. He still had an axe to grind, accusing Hurst and the Dimiani of insulting his family. Eckert stepped in to try and stop things, but the man still raged. Darcey stepped in, much to the annoyance of the fuming captain. Darcey, while dressed in a voluminous dress, still was able to face the man down. Gregore soon joined and looked him in the eye, dressed as he was in his own armour. Of course Vydori, the more jovial and trickster of Darcey's brother, caused a commotion, barging Gregore into the captain.
With the captain on his ass, the man jumped up and drew his sword, demanding a duello. Gregore was more than ready to meet his blade. Vydori had what he wanted, some fun, and explain to the others that the captain had in fact been engaged to Kateryna, but obviously things changed and he seemed to have taken things badly.
The fight started, as blades clashed across the courtyard. Each parry met a riposte and a parry. They were each equals, circling and lashing out. Darcey, annoyed with her brother, dragged him away, even as he protested that he had to see if his bet on Gregore would pay off. Darcey thought this was all a diversion, and sought to watch her brother, she loved him but knew too well what a schemer he was.
Gregore and the captain traded blows until the captain relented to the more skilled warrior.
An hour later the wedding was conducted, with bride and groom walking together towards the priest of Morrow, the Prelate of Rhydden. Vows were exchanged and violins played. Solemnly the married pair exited the manor chapel, followed by the wedding guests, and finally trumpets sounded and applause was unleashed.
Eckert and Hurst checked the dowery again, thinking they must have missed something, and found that the music box was gone. Eckert and Hurst started searching and checking the servants and guests, Gregore headed out to patrol, and Darcey rushed off to change into her leather armour, fearing her family were in danger.
Darcey, now dressed in her work attire, much to the shock of the guests, watched over the newly married bride. She listened to the young couple talk, and heard the young girl explain how she had learnt to sing a new song, one from the music box that was in the dowry.
Gregore was in the mansion gardens, and rounded a well groomed hedge to find the music box shattered on the ground, and he then felt the cold shock of a blade sliding into his back.