Chapter 19

The Party (Part 3)

“Your Imperial Majesty, I’d like to introduce you to Sage. A San’Dreki dancer for your guests on this special evening.” Alfran Goffil said as he introduced the dancer to his emperor.

The emperor just sat there dumbfounded. A memory entered his head of last night, or was it two nights ago, or ten? he thought to himself.

The girl walked forward, “We’ve met.” she said tersely as she extended her tail slowly and used it to close the emperor’s open jaw, giving it a subtle flick at the end to draw blood across Saarang’s cheek.

Alfran stepped forward with a dark look across his face.

“Relax Alfran, I think I deserved that.” He said, extending his arm to stop the man. “Let the girl dance at least before you throw her out.”

And so Alfran escorted the San’Dreki dancer by the name of Sage on to the stage, where an audience awaited. Alfran picked up the microphone.

“Ladies and gentlemen. Please welcome ahhhh…”

Sage started dancing, not even bothering to wait for Alfran to finish his introduction. He stood there, mouth agape staring at the woman as the dancer moved in perfect sync with the music. The steward was rewarded for his inaction when Sage swung around the pole and lashed out with her tail, delivering a swift, deep cut to his cheek.

The audience cheered as blood splattered on to the white marble tiles below his feet. He moved quickly after that, blood trickling down his face eager to get out of range of that deadly tail. He gave her one last look – not one of anger but of respect, and something else, before he disappeared to get his wound seen to.

“Now that was entertainment!” Emperor Saarang laughed.

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