Welcome back to Teaser Tuesday. Enjoy this piece from Legends of Windemere: Allure of the Gypsies!
“She tricked me again,” Trinity growls as she drags herself out of the river. She looks up at the top of the thirty-foot waterfall with a cold, angry stare. Trinity is still amazed at the detail of the landscape illusion that caused her to walk off the edge. The chaos elf thanks the gods that she landed in a deep part of the river instead of smashing into the rocks.
“I always thought chaos elves were the masters of tricks,” laughs a female voice from the trees.
“We are, but my experience with gypsy magic is rather limited,” Trinity begrudgingly admits. She begins walking toward the slippery cliff until a dagger strikes the ground in front of her. The chaos elf stops and looks around the trees for any sign of her prey.
“Then, let me warn you about my kind,” the gypsy announces, her voice echoing among the rocks and trees. “We don’t like being hunted. Following me is unhealthy. You already fell for my illusions and survived. You shouldn’t push your luck.”
Trinity gently claps her hands and keeps her eyes on the top of the waterfall. “As a fellow trickster and caster, I feel I should applaud your skills. I honestly thought that I was stepping onto a rope bridge instead of walking off a waterfall. Skill like yours is rare. Now, little girl, why don’t you come out of hiding and make this easy?”
Sari cautiously steps out from behind the trees at the top of the waterfall. Three throwing daggers are loosely held in her fist while she takes a seat on a large stone. Her brightly colored clothes make Trinity wonder why she was having such a hard time finding her among the browns and greens of the forest.
“That’s a good girl. Are you willing to come down here?” Trinity asks with a fake smile.
“You look smart, but you act stupid,” Sari bluntly replies.
“This coming from the child who revealed herself to her enemy,” the chaos elf points out. “How do you know I can’t kill you from down here?”
Sari grins impishly from her high perch. “How do you know this is the real me?”
“Damn gypsies. I can never see through their blasted magic,” Trinity mutters, the sound of rushing water masking her words.
“If you want to talk without yelling, I promise to let you climb up the other side of the waterfall,” Sari offers. The throwing daggers vanish into her skirts and she puts her hands behind her back.
Trinity watches the gypsy carefully as she walks toward the slick wall. Looking up, she can see enough handholds to easily get back to the top. With a delicate grunt, the chaos elf queen leaps onto the wall and begins to climb. From where she is climbing, Trinity can barely see Sari’s blue hair blowing in the wind. With a cunning smirk, Trinity grips a long vine when she gets halfway up the waterfall. Before she can attempt to swing to Sari’s side of the waterfall, a glint of metal flies through the air and severs the vine. Trinity flails wildly in the air until she can catch another crevice and return to climbing.
“Even if you did make it over to this side, I can disappear into the forest before you can reach the top. So, please stay on your side,” Sari requests with a yawn. She gets to her feet and fixes her skirts while she watches Trinity climb the last half of the waterfall. Trinity gracefully flips over the edge and lands in a crouch with a stiletto in her hand. She takes a small bow when the gypsy starts applauding, but quickly remembers why she ended up going over the waterfall in the first place.
“Hey! Don’t mock me,” Trinity snaps.
“I wasn’t mocking you. That was a good show,” Sari swears, juggling two of her daggers. “Now, leave me alone.”
Trinity doubles over with laughter. “You can’t honestly believe that I will do as you say.”
“There is no reason for you to be following me. Your friends destroyed my family and left me with nowhere to go. You have done enough damage to my life!” Sari shouts, a sudden surge of sadness running through her body. A tear begins to trickle down her face and she swiftly turns away from the chaos elf.
“I’d be lying if I said that I didn’t feel sorry for you, but you are an unfortunate loose end. I can’t let you run around Windemere and return to cause my master some unexpected trouble,” Trinity says, flexing her sore shoulders. “If it makes you feel better, I promise I won’t kill you.”
Sari turns to look at her doubtfully. “Would your friends stick to that promise?”
“You might as well have said no.”
“I’m surprised that you haven’t asked me why we attacked your clan.”
Trinity can see Sari bite her lower lip to halt her tears. A trickle of blood runs down Sari’s white skin before dripping off her chin into the churning river. Three river sharks risk going over the waterfall as they rush to the drops of blood. A fight breaks out between them until two are washed away by a sudden wave in the river. Trinity watches the pair of sharks twist in the air as they plummet to the rocks below. She can see more waves coming down the river and cautiously steps away from the rising water. The chaos elf can only assume that a nearby dam has burst, which means she has very little time to capture the gypsy.
“I don’t care why you did it,” Sari angrily blurts out.
“Then, I guess you weren’t really attached to your family,” Trinity coldly counters.