Chapter 9

A low, grey tower came into view as Sheil dropped out of the brisk western wind and descended towards her destination. She breathed deeply of Shadowdale's night air and landed at the front door of the old tower. Glancing behind her at the cracked flagstone path, the wind elf noticed several glyphs of warding. Shrugging disconcertedly, she knocked upon the wooden door and waited.

After a few moments the door opened and a middle-aged human stands there rubbing his eyes of sleep.

"Lhaeo, I must speak with Elminster as soon as possible. Tis a matter of life or death." Sheil stated as he reluctantly allowed her to enter.

"Ahhhh, Life or Death. I have those forms around here somewhere." Lhaeo shuffled through huge stacks of papers and books and, after an hour, finally smiled. "Here they are." He carried over a stack of papers one foot thick and placed it upon her lap. "All of these forms must be filled out and then you will be placed upon the one year waiting list. You are lucky. The less pressing cases go onto the five year waiting list." Lhaeo grinned at the wind elf and walked back to his desk. "Just let me know when you finish those and I have another stack for you."

A glimmer of mischief lighted her eyes as a gust of wind whirled about the room. The stack of papers upon her lap vanished in the whirling cyclone.

"All done. Shall we go wake Elminster now?"

Lhaeo slapped his forehead as he frantically tried to catch the flow of paper leaving through a small window. Muttering something about disrespectful wind elves, Lhaeo gave up and sat in a nearby chair.

Elminster shimmered into the center of the room and gazed about. "Trouble Lhaeo?" Glancing at the giggling wind elf, Elminster sighed deeply. "Aye, trouble indeed." The elder mage pulled a scroll case from his cloak and handed it to Sheil. "Here is a recipe for the antidote to the poison which afflicts Brisid. I trust ye will take it in exchange for a quick departure and an end to your paper cyclone."

The wind elf nodded affirmatively and winked. She darted out the open window as the cyclone subsided, depositing the papers in a neat stack at Lhaeo's feet.

Sheil flew up into a nearby tree and sat on a branch. Sliding the scroll from it's case, the wind elf read the intricate writing:

"The antidote is a standard healing potion mixed with Stoneroot and snake venom."

The wind elf leapt into the air and flew towards the only place she knew where Stoneroots could be found. Shadow Gap came into view after a brief trip on the wind and Sheil dropped silently onto the path.

Hearing the snap of a twig in the forest behind her, the raven-haired elf twirled about to see three brigands moving towards her with daggers in hand. Leaping back into the air, she pulled a throwing knife from each of her boots and hurled them into the chests of the nearest attackers. As the remaining brigand pulled out a longbow and prepared to fire on her, Sheil grabbed the round form of her chictah from her belt and flung it. The chictah whirled through the air and passed through the man's neck. The throwing blade returned to Sheil's hand as the brigand's head dropped to the ground.

After retrieving her throwing knives, the wind elf walked out into the forest. It took her an hour to locate and dig up a Stoneroot, which she dropped into a pouch on her belt. She leapt into the air and scanned the region for a place to find a suitable venomous serpent.

Sheil flew a good distance back towards the west and finally spotted a small swamp. The wind elf hovered slowly through the marsh until she spied a green snake wrapped around the branch of a nearby tree. Once again pulling a throwing knife from one of her boots, Sheil tossed the blade and impaled the snake just below the head. She pulled a small empty vial from her belt pouch and extracted the venom from the dead snake. Upon pulling her blade free, the snake's corpse dropped into the marsh, providing food for a group of small hungry fish.

The wind elf leapt back into the sky and rode a strong eastern breeze back to the Rankled Boar Inn. As she dropped out of the wind and landed silently in the deserted city street, Sheil spotted her kitten curled up on the roof and staring into the sky. The female elf gazed up into the sky and took notice of the strange winged creature above.

"Hmmmm. Wonder what that thing is?"

Sheil entered the Inn and waited for the elf who left the note on the board outside.

Continue to Chapter 10