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Murder and a Baby

Writers: Heather, Suzee
Date Posted: 31st May 2020

Characters: Nazli, Arion, Saedriel
Description: Nazli might have killed someone and Arion might have to cover it up.
Location: Amber Hills Hold
Date: month 2, day 2 of Turn 10


Nazli
Nazli

Nazli paced in her quarters, Benamil wouldn't be home for some time
and she just had to have some pickles and cream. She rubbed her
greatly expanded belly and shook her head. She couldn't wait so she
set off down the back stairs. She knew exactly where they were. She'd
worked her long enough to know precisely where Zelanka stored
everything.

Soon she was into the proper storage room looking for the exact ones
she wanted. The ones with lots of garlic. It wasn't like her husband
would be wanting to kiss her or she him. "Ahhh there you are," she
said to herself when she finally found the jar she wanted.

A pair of dark eyes glinted in the darkness. Saedriel had been
contemplating for months the best way to get Nazli alone. It was not
easy, sneaking into the Hold, making sure that she was not recognized
by any of the guards, and more importantly, making sure that she did
not accidentally bump into Lord Zathris.

**Zathris,** Saedriel nearly snorted out loud as she rolled her eyes,
but remembered herself and pressed a hand over her mouth. The Lord
Holder had been so sure that his threat would keep her silenced, but
she knew the truth about Lady Benani's brother. She had thought that
Zathris would pay her hush money the first time she had gone to him
with the information, but he hadn't, had he? No, he had forbade her
presence at the Hold instead, and then conveniently, Benamil had
become engaged and then married to some random woman by the next Hold
Gather.

**Too convenient.** Saedriel thought with narrowed eyes as she watched
Nazli reaching for a jar. If she couldn't get the Lord Holder to take
her seriously, then frightening Benamil's wife a little with the
information would be sure to do the trick. After all, Nazli wouldn't
want her scandalous marriage to her man-loving husband to go public,
would she? Saedriel's lips quirked into a smug grin.

Saedriel stepped out of the shadows, between Nazli and the door, a
short dagger glinting in her left hand. She had brought it mainly just
for show because this time she was determined that someone would take
her seriously. "Lady Nazli, I've been hoping we could talk," she said
in her throaty voice.

Startled, Nazli stepped back, eyes wide. "W-what?" she stammered. Her
eyes flicked to the dagger and then the woman's face. "W-w-who are
you? What do you want?" Her throat tightened with the old familiar
fear and visions of an assault whimpered in her mind. She held the jar
of pickles protectively in front of her rather pregnant belly and
began to sidle toward the door.

"I know all about your husband and his... preferences," Saedriel's
voice took on a suggestive tone as she side stepped to prevent Nazli
from leaving, the blade still balanced in her hand threateningly. "I
tried to go about this the nice way with Lord Zathris," her teeth
flashed in the dim lighting. "Now we will have to go about this the
hard way." Saedriel reached for Nazli's wrist. All she needed to do
was scare the girl a little more, make Nazli believe she would tell,
and then ask for a nice tidy sum to guarantee her silence.

Nazli flinched away from the woman. "My husband is a loving and gentle
man." She frowned a bit puzzled, "You talked to Lord Zathris about
him?" All sorts of thoughts dashed around in her head and then she
reacted in panic and used the jar of pickles to slam the knife hand
away. Unfortunately it was stopped by a shelving unit and the knife
clanged on the floor, "Help," Nazli screamed with the shattered pickle
jar falling into the pool on the floor. She scrambled away from the
woman still trying frantically to reach the door. "Help," she screamed
again.

Saedriel hissed in pain as her wrist was crushed against the shelf by
the jar of pickles. "Get back here," she growled, lunging and catching
a fistful of the back of Nazli's dress with her left hand.

"No," Nazli screamed and kicked at the other woman as panic overcame
her reason and she simply struggled to get away from the attack and
back to her room and safety. Benamil had taught her to yell 'no' if
someone, anyone, tried anything with her. She fell to the floor and
wrapped herself into a ball of protection around her baby. "No! No!
No!" she screamed again. "Get away from me."

Arion had been passing down the corridor with a crate of wine in his
arms when he heard the first yell. The note of panic in the voice made
it impossible to be mistaken for kids playing. Setting the crate down,
Arion moved hurriedly toward the voice, but what was unprepared for
the sight that greeted him. Nazli curled on the ground, and a dark
haired woman lying not far from her, face down, with blood pooling
around her torso.

"Nazli?!" He crouched down beside of her. "Are you hurt? What happened?"

"She's going to hurt me," Nazli gasped as she recognized Arion. She
grasped at the vintner with a still panicked look. "She has a knife."

"Nazli, Nazli," he said, trying to calm her down. "Look at her,"
Arion's voice lowered into a harsh whisper.

"What," she said in a low voice and looked around at the prone form
and the pool of blood. She scrambled closer to Arion. Somehow he was
safe in this crazy room. "Take me home," she whimpered and tried to
get to her feet but she couldn't, she was too awkward. "Please,
Arion," her eyes clouded with tears. "Help me," she got out around the
huge lump in her throat.

"I will, I will," he promised, even as he pried himself away from her.
"But I have to check on this woman." Arion reached out tentatively,
sweeping dark hair away from the woman's face. **Saedriel!** He
recognized the woman immediately as one of the frequent tavern goers
at the Vintner Hall, the very same that had threatened to tell about
Benamil. Pressing his fingers to her still warm neck, the back of his
neck tingled as he realized that there was no pulse. "Nazli," he
turned back to his lover's wife, grabbing her, not ungently, by the
arms. "She's dead."

She turned her head away and just repeating "no, no, no," Her mind
refused to work and her heart pounded. Then she felt a huge cramp
clamp like a vise on her belly. "Ohhhhhh," she cried out.

Arion had sisters, he'd heard that type of "Ohhhh" before, and it was
not what he wanted to hear in this moment. Nazli going into labor was
the last thing they needed. What had happened here? Had Nazli killed
Saedriel? Had she stabbed her? In... self-defense? In... anger? What
were they going to do with the body? Should they just leave it? He
needed time to think. "Let me just... move her...." He said to Nazli,
even though he wasn't sure that she was even hearing him at this
point.

Moving Saedriel's body wasn't easy, especially since so much blood had
pooled around her. He dumped her behind the last storage shelf and
slide a few of the large, round barrels in front of her. It would have
to do until he came back. **For what?** he asked himself. Going back
to Nazli, his eyes zeroed in on the obvious pool left on the floor. He
didn't have time to clean that up, not with Nazli sounding as though
she were in serious labor. **The wine!** Arion remembered the crate of
wine he had been carrying. Dashing into the hallway, he retrieved the
crate, and then without hesitation smashed each bottle of red wine on
the floor, right over the pool of blood. Last, he tossed the crate
down onto its side in the midst of the mess.

**There, now at least if someone sees this mess before I get back, it
will look like someone just dropped the wine.** Arion bent and grabbed
Nazli by the elbows. "Can you walk?" he asked, hoisting her to her
feet.

She was between contractions so she nodded and pushed herself up with
his help then she hung on his arm as they left the room. "Healers,"
she gasped as she felt another contraction start and leaned against
the wall for a moment. She pointed down the corridor toward the
healers rooms. "There, take me there," she ground out.

Arion made an executive decision, bending to sweep Nazli into his
arms, and then hurry her to the infirmary. He wasn't about to let
Benamil's baby be born in the hall! "Baby on the way," the vintner
called as he walked into the infirmary, which immediately set a couple
of healers scurrying into action.

A healer directed him to a delivery bed where he careful deposited his
lover's wife. "I am going to go get Benamil," he said to her.

"And Benani," she called just before another contraction whisked her
away on a wave of pain.

Arion gave a sharp nod of his head as he left the infirmary. He needed
to go get Benamil so that he could be there for the birth of his
child. **His child.** The thought stung a little. Something new for
Benamil to love, something that he shared exclusively with Nazli,
something that permanently bound the two of them together. While Nazli
and Benamil were celebrating a birth, Arion needed to figure out what
to do with the death.

Last updated on the May 31st 2020


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