The three began their trek, in circuitous fashion through the underbelly of the city. It wended thru winding ways and narrow alleys, travelling over bridges spanning canals, and wide boulevards that were filled with throngs of people even at this lat hour.
Radd never slept.
They continued past ornate temples and through broken down and rambling, ruined shells of buildings that were once prosperous and now dangerously unsafe and fraught with peril. Past sellers of the Black that sold their wares from shadowy alcoves and the powderhead women that brazenly beckoned from the balconies of the red houses. There were footpads and cutpurses afoot as well. Seasoned toughs that would slice a man head to toe as soon as glance at him, all for a bit of copper or a percieved slight. Most knew Cobb and gave him a wide berth. Not for fear of fighting prowess but the reputation he had earned in his twenty seasons drawing breath as not being right in the head.
Being crazy, or at least thought of as being crazy, had it's benifits.
They were entering Fishtown, the part of the city that was infamous for its seedy and unsavory reputation which was saying much in Radd which was known as the city of thieves. They would not have to fear the Watch here, not because they were paid to look the other way as in other sections of the city, but because they feared to step foot here.
This was Cobb's home. The iodine smell of the ocean close by filled his nostils even over the smell of the rain. The darkness of the ocean sky yawned to the east as a counterpoint to the myriad lanterns and torches that painted the clapboard buildings that grew, in haphazard fashion from the roughly fashioned cobblestone streets. He smiled as a fight involving about twenty youths erupted into a chaotic whirl of frenzied motion across the street from the alley leading to his house.
Dalia was opening the door before he had a chance to knock, ushering him and the other two inside. Cobb chuckled before kissing her. She must have seen his coming in the cards. She nodded at Haya as she swept into the darkness of the hallway. She opened the door at the far end that revealed a room that was comfortable and tastefully furnished and a contrast to the wild urban sprawl outside.
The light that came from the many candles revealed Dalia's features. She was beautiful, with flowing curly hair and slightly slanted almond eyes that hinted of fey blood. The colorful shawl and scarves she wore failed to conceal the feminine curves that Cobb often joked he would one day die protecting.
Dalia was more than capable of protecting herself. Especially when angered.
She was angry.
Her eyes, the color of violets, flashed as she looked at Tinnius, her lips pressed tight in a scowl.
"Why do you bring death to my house Cobb?"
"What?" Cobb wasn't taking her seriously. He shed his cloak and walked to the pantry to rummage for strong drink. Dalia held Tinnius with her gaze as she would a poisonous asp.
Haya motioned to the sitting table that occupied the corner of the room. "Cards don' lie." Cobb returned from the pantry with a flask of Elvish wine and three mugs. He scowled at his cousin, "Don't encourage her." She responded by smacking Cobb, hard. "Wench.." he made as if to hit her back. Dalia didn't flinch. He hid his smile by turning. "Don't show out cause we've guests." He poured drinks for Tinnius and Haya. "Do the cards if you fear." and to Tinnius after a long swallow of wine, "Do you mind letting her do a reading on you? Won't get any sleep elsewise, wot?"...