The Strigoi Longsword

∴ A Biting Chill ∴

The fire leaps in its ornate grate, but a shiver struggles free regardless. You breathe on your hands and fold your arms for warmth, casting your eyes warily around you. You feel uncommonly small in the echoing hall, dwarfed by the heavy crimson curtains, drawn despite the early hour.

Comparatively, the vampire somehow fills the space. He rests one hand on the stone mantle, a vision in crumpled shirtsleeves, red wine staining the lace at his throat. There is a dominance to his easy stance – a clear message that he owns this place. Not just the bones of it, the red velvet and glossy stone, but the space itself. The vastness is his. The emptiness is his. And the silence is his to break.

“You have brought me the piece?”

You nod, words sticking in your throat, and open the case. The vampire’s eyes flash as they take in the silver flame of the blade, the blood red hide of the grip, the clawlike curl of the black crossguard.

“Yes,” he whispers, long fingers stroking the leather. “It has been too long… Much too long. You have done a good thing to return this sword to my care. You shall be amply… rewarded.”

You flinch and suddenly the sword is in the vampire’s hands, his pale lips parted in a peal of silent laughter.

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The Glossa Sacra Rapier and Dagger

∴ A Tongue of Flame ∴

Divorced from its source, the moonlight hangs heavy, yet somehow insubstantial. It is as if the entire cathedral is composed of blue-tinged light and shadow: the cool gloom of the pews, the patterns burned in brilliant white onto the tomb-strewn floor.

You glance up at the immense rose window filtering the light, all tapering triskeles in an endless round. Then your gaze is drawn downward, to the cloaked figure you knew would be waiting at the altar rail. You wonder what he prays for – victory? Or forgiveness?

The figure turns, heavy cowl falling away from his face, and you see that his hands were folded not in prayer, but around the hilt of a slender, serpentine sword.

In the dappled moonlight, the flamberge blade looks like a tongue of silver flame, alarming and otherworldly. Entranced, you move closer, hand fluttering toward your own hilt.

So consumed are you by the rapier’s cold fire, you don’t notice the dagger until it’s too late.

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