The tavernkeeper hemmed and hawed, tapping his fingers on the bar as he appeared to be in thought, a tongue darting to lick a toothless part of his gum as he performed a mental calculus of betrayals.
“It does depend on what ‘lowly bandits’ entail when it comes to my business,” The man made a vague gesture to his other customers, grinning mischievously, “And if you’re here for the bounty, then you likely have some sort of an idea already that you’ll be spitting in the face of the Rebels. Well. Some of them anyways. They’re not exactly a unified group, those fellas.”
“But,” he said, “The Daius does hold precedence. Even in this part of the city, so I suppose I’ll point you on your way.”
“However, I can’t say he’s an easy man to find, lady,” Fredericks said at last, “Else he’d be dead. Or maybe he already is.”
He wiped the mug clean and placed it among the array of shoddy scrap alloy wares below the bar table. Another dirty mug found its way into his hands, as it were. Like a storyteller baiting his audience, the elder gave an experimental smudge on the inside of the mug before he finally began.
“Word gets around fast, of course, with the Daius’ order. No doubt you’ll soon have competitors also coming for your man. It’s not every day that a high-profile bounty of a man not exactly known for his combat prowess shows up.”
“But somebody’s been trying to kill Redeye already. The gods know who ordered the hit, but a fight broke out in the Segvyre- that’s a casino- and I’ve heard words that it was your man who stirred up trouble. After the fires went out he poached a few of bouncers with his newfound fortune and disappeared. It’ll have to be one of the havens. Places like the Red Harpy, or even the Gorg- Godsdamn,” Fred swore suddenly.
Maybe it was the subtle shift in the ambient mana field that heralded the presence of a hedge wizard, the hush in the crowd, or his bouncer’s battle cry as they tried to throw off the two fighters ganging up on them, Fredericks suddenly realized he had unwelcome guests.
“You asked for something extra? There. That smug asshole behind the men trying to force their way in is your mark. Never was much of a keeper of low profiles, he is.”