It was a fine harness and reins. The leather was soft and well tooled. The bit was so shiney one thought it could be silver. It looked like no bit and bridle that he had ever seen. Yet, it seemed familiar, like he had heard stories about this before.
"There is something about the outside of a horse…that is good for the inside of a man."
A shape-shifter of some sort has taken up a post at the War College of an enemy realm, where he secretly picks off only the most promising officer cadets, arranging bizarre accidents that gradually debase the leadership of the hostile army. In the long run, this will improve his nation's chances when the inevitable conflict comes.
As a shape-shifter he can impersonate superiors and peers alike and send the target candidate to the cleverly-prepared site of his (or her?) execution. As long as he is successful, no-one will ever know about the deception--even necromancy will only implicate the one impersonated...