by Stealthcat

The tower on one of the keeps curtain walls offered a great view to the south, but Zack was more interested in something on the desk.

She stashed it away when Cope entered.

"You don't need to be here." She said without looking.

"I know but I want to thank you for the extra hours you've been putting in." He replied walking over to the table. In addition to a stack of parchment and tombs it held some maps and reports.

"We're short on personnel and I'm short on coin so it works out."

"Still it's a lot to ask, I can relive you, we all have to put the work in." He scanned the table’s contents. It's good to multi task so long as it doesn't distract from watch duties, not that he can complain about that.

"That's okay, copper, it's grown on me, but don't forget we still need the numbers on the north wall."

"I haven't, Zack, I was just there, just don't forget to take time off or I'll come back up here and drag you out."

"Bah, I'm not going to challenge you to another game of pool." She countered without looking away from the papers on the table.

"Just think about what I said." He turned and left the room, heading back down the steps.

The lush green grass made the golden spotted fur of the cheetah stick out, it just wasn't the same as running through a field of dry grass as would be more common in the south.

Stealth was humming a tune, although it sounded more like he was chirping, but still the big cat managing well enough. '"An-thro-morphs, ro-bots, I mean, kee-pers in dis-guise!" Yeah, that's how it went; Madog sure says some strange things sometimes'.

Sitting on a ledge a lone figure was watching the cheetah running in the distance, he was anxious about letting the opportunity go. Grabbing onto the ledge with hoof like hands he flipped over and went in through the window into the very room where the two guards had just spoken, one of them was still there and he was in full view of her.

"If you want to steal components of a spell before they spoil then by all means go ahead."

Itch took another look back at the courier before he disappeared from view and was well out of range. He turned again to his employer, she was looking through a list that had been hastily scribbled from memory during her watch at the gate. It had been compiled with the help of an associate, as such some of the listings were in clear print while others were barley more than scribbles, the affect of writing without thumbs? Ha! It would have been no different trying to read them before Three Gates.

Of course they didn't even check the carriages for what was going out or coming in and many of the guards had trouble reading anyway.

But as for that little spotted courier, seeing as chirps from a lithe quadruped didn't suffice as papers they could stop him to check the bag, it's not like he used a seal from the duke or they had orders to let him through regardless. That's how she found out about the mithril and far, far less valuable items, like the sort of thing the client insisted was valuable but only sentimentally so.

But, no, he had nothing good right now. Zack was looking at more traditional targets and focussing on the sort of raids she had been masterminding in the south.

"One thing though, Itch, if you do go after him again only wound him if you have to but don't kill him."

"No promises." His ears swiveled a bit in dismissal.

"If you do there will be no more deliveries and we will lose a good opportunity." It was the first time she looked up from the parchment.

"I'll try."

"One other thing." She reached to something near the table, "I believe this belongs to you." The guard held up the cross bow and handed it to the wart hog who was happy to have it returned. She laughed inwardly at the brief tension with the watch over doing their job in regard to that small detail, even if they could have gone out that far to take a thief back they would have been too busy with the recent infighting, she may be making some coin on the side but at least there is no bigotry among the guards.

He taped it, recalling some memory, "You know I heard some guy from that job a few weeks back got stuck in a cave." He grunted in amusement and turned to look at the list. "What about that one? It should have broken down by now just south of the keep." The wart hog mentioned and made a cutting motion with his hands.

"They're just moving blankets and some moldy old tombs, I was thinking more of this one, the inventory is vague but from what I'm told they're poorly guarded."

"Could be worth a look..."

"Aye, I want you to get the boys together and check it out."

"Yes Sir. We'll leave tonight."