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The crypt III

I stepped into the dimly lit chamber, my eyes widening as I surveyed the unexpected gathering.

What’s happening here? I had no idea there was a little rebellion going on. I only expected to find the healer here. Rohan really hid this well.

A sly smile spread across the goblin’s face, revealing a row of jagged, yellow teeth. His eyes, like two glinting coins, shone with an unsettling cunning.

And a goblin? Seriously? Since when did these petty and treacherous creatures join any noble cause? Ah, look at him with that sly smile. I’ve never been a fan of goblins, be they civilized or wild. They’re all the same. The wild ones are even worse, always ready to devour anything that moves.

Rohan stepped forward, positioning himself between me and the peculiar assembly.

And there goes our fearless leader, entangled in dangerous plots.

As I approached the small group, Rohan introduced me to the red-haired male fairy standing beside him—Thistle. He offered a warm smile, his eyes reflecting genuine concern. “Princess,” he greeted me with a respectful bow.

Sylvenna, the white-haired healer, extended a welcoming hand, her eyes shining with kindness.”It’s good to see you again, Princess,” she said, her voice soothing. I couldn’t help but blush at the title; it still felt foreign and uncomfortable, as if I didn’t quite fit into this world of royalty.

My gaze shifted to the fey bound to the chair, a grimy sack covering his head. A wave of pity washed over me.

Who is he, and why is he bound like this?

Sylvenna’s voice cut through my thoughts, drawing my attention back to the small group. She gestured towards the  hunched figure standing beside her. The goblin.

“High Lord, Princess, allow me to present Grizpik,” she said, gesturing towards the goblin with a nod of her head. “He is a goblin merchant.” She added.  “Goblins can travel freely between regions and continents, even across worlds, gathering valuable information to sell.”

Rohan dipped his head in a curt nod, his expression guarded yet polite. “Grizpik.”

Grizpik, bowed with a flourish, his eyes gleaming with shrewd intelligence. “Indeed, you’ve got it right. The one and only Grizpik, a humble trader from the Whispering Trees Forest. Pleasure to meet you both.” He cast an assessing gaze over Rohan, recognizing the strength within him.

“A strong one, you are. I like strong, though maybe a bit too serious for my taste.” His words dripped sarcasm. “And you, my pretty,” he continued, turning his attention to me. “Aerin, lovely name. Now, this is a rare sight. A half-elf Half Fey, our little Starborn.” He reached out to touch a strand of my hair, twirling it between his fingers. “Golden brown, like melted gold. Beautiful. If I had my way, I’d love to add a bit of this to my collection.”


I shot him a sarcastic smile. “Sorry, my hair is not for sale. The only thing you’ll collect from me is a swift kick if you don’t step back.”

Rohan chuckled nervously, glancing between me and the goblin. “Well, we’re off to a great start,” he mumbled, trying to diffuse the tension.

The goblin cackled, rubbing his hands together. “Feisty, this one. I like it. Fae with fire in her veins. You’ve got fire in those pretty nostrils, Princess.”

A snort escaped my lips as the goblin spoke, and I crossed my arms tightly. I knew these types of civilized goblins all too well — always ambitious, always opportunistic. I’d encountered enough of them in Príbora to recognize the greed that glittered in their eyes, like Grizpik’s now. Payment? Oh, it could be anything they desired. Trinkets, jewels, nails even teeth or blood if they were feeling particularly gruesome. But their most prized possession, the one that truly ignited a disturbing hunger in their eyes, was hair. Not just a lock of hair, but a full head of it. The more luscious and abundant, the better.

Sylvenna’s hurried voice broke through the tense atmosphere. “I used an ancient magical amulet, a family relic,” she explained. “I called Grizpik. If there’s a way to break Absinthya’s magical crystal, he would know.”

Hope flickered in Rohan’s eyes, and I couldn’t help but feel a surge of anticipation.

Grizpik examined the symbols painted on my arms, his sharp eyes narrowing.  “Impressive drawings you’ve got there, Princess,” he remarked, the way he emphasized ‘Princess’ making my skin crawl. He traced a gnarled finger along the markings. “But be wary, Princess Starborn. These symbols, they’re powerful. They amplify the spell. And,” he added, a hint of menace in his tone, “this kind of magic comes at a cost.”

My heart quickened, and I exchanged a worried glance with Rohan. “What do you mean?” he demanded, irritation bleeding into his voice.

Grizpik’s grin widened, showing his sharp teeth. “To unleash the full power of the crystal, someone’s gotta pay the price. A life for a life. And the magic in these symbols,” he gestured at my arms, “it’s potent. Your little Starborn here would lose her life for sure.”

So that’s why the witch drew those symbols on my arms. To increase and use the crystal’s power to its fullest at the cost of my own life.

Dread crawled up my spine, and Rohan’s eyes narrowed with fury. “Tell us what needs to be done, goblin. Now!”

Grizpik cackled, rubbing his hands together. “Ah, it’s not that simple, you see. There’s a price. And your lovely Starborn here knows it well.” He gestured at me, his gaze fixated on my hair. “Payment first, then knowledge.”

I could feel the tension rising within me, a mixture of fear and frustration. “You want my hair? You won’t get a single strand, you wretched creature! Tell us what you know, or I swear I’ll—”

In the midst of our heated exchange with Grizpik, an unexpected noise echoed from the fey captive in the chair. A muffled plea reached our ears, disrupting the negotiations.”Rohan, please! Have mercy! Forgive me.”

My hand instinctively flew to my chest, not just from the startling sound but … I knew that voice. It couldn’t be… could it?

2 Comments on “The crypt III”

  1. Oh, the voice under the sack… now you really made me – and probably many others on dA – very curious :>
    Your writing as always stunning!

    1. Thank you so much, Lorian! 💜

      Oh, the voice under the sack… now you really made me – and probably many others on dA – very curious

      It will be revealed soon. ^^

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